Avoid Paying Penalties By Following Reasonable Care Guidelines


Under the Customs Modernization Act, two new concepts emerge. The “Informed Compliance” and “Share Responsibility,”, which are premised on the idea that to maximize voluntary compliance, the importers need to be clearly and completely informed of their legal obligations.

Under this act, the importer of record is responsible for using reasonable care to enter, classify and determine the value of the imported merchandise and to provide any other information necessary to enable CBP to properly assess duties, collect accurate statistics, and determine whether other applicable legal requirements, if any, have been met. An importer of record’s failure to exercise reasonable care could delay the release of the merchandise and, in some cases, could result in the imposition of penalties or, in certain instances, referral to criminal enforcement.

So what is Reasonable care?

Reasonable care implies an effort has been made in good faith to provide CBP with the most accurate information possible. In short, it is your responsibility as an importer to give CBP the correct information that confirms and verifies by your identity.

As a suggestion and to begin to develop guidelines to address the Reasonable Care:

  • Develop a checklist;
  • Check your Customs Brokers work;
  • Stay informed by visiting CBP.GOV under the trade tab look for informed compliance publications;
  • For tariff, classifications visit CBP CROSS Rulings.

By no means this is a comprehensive list on developing a reasonable care program, but it’s a good start to develop a plan based on your needs.

If you need any help with this, or any other customs related service, let us know and we’ll guide you through the process.

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