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Duties
This law is codified in Chapter 4 of Title 19 of the U.S. Code, with the rest of the Tariff Act of 1930. Note however that most of the provisions identified with that act had predecessors in earlier statutes, nearly all have been significantly modified by numerous laws enacted since 1930, and several were not enacted until well after 1930.  

 

 


See also the CENTRAL guide to Trade Laws of the United States.

 

Other topics in the Tariff Act of 1930 include (in rough order of importance): 

Note that this is not an exhaustive listing. Some items in the Tariff Act of 1930 are not included here due to their obscurity, declining relevance, or because they have been superseded in law or practice by other provisions of trade law.

 

 


Part III—Ascertainment, Collection, and Recovery of Duties

§1481. Invoice; contents

(a) In general

All invoices of merchandise to be imported into the United States and any electronic equivalent thereof considered acceptable by the Secretary in regulations prescribed under this section shall set forth, in written, electronic, or such other form as the Secretary shall prescribe, the following:

(1) The port of entry to which the merchandise is destined;

(2) The time when, the place where, and the person by whom and the person to whom the merchandise is sold or agreed to be sold, or if to be imported otherwise than in pursuance of a purchase, the place from which shipped, the time when and the person to whom and the person by whom it is shipped;

(3) A detailed description of the merchandise, including the commercial name by which each item is known, the grade or quality, and the marks, numbers, or symbols under which sold by the seller or manufacturer in the country of exportation, together with the marks and numbers of the packages in which the merchandise is packed;

(4) The quantities in the weights and measures of the country or place from which the merchandise is shipped, or in the weights and measures of the United States;

(5) The purchase price of each item in the currency of the purchase, if the merchandise is shipped in pursuance of a purchase or an agreement to purchase;

(6) If the merchandise is shipped otherwise than in pursuance of a purchase or an agreement to purchase, the value for each item, in the currency in which the transactions are usually made, or, in the absence of such value, the price in such currency that the manufacturer, seller, shipper, or owner would have received, or was willing to receive, for such merchandise if sold in the ordinary course of trade and in the usual wholesale quantities in the country of exportation;

(7) The kind of currency, whether gold, silver, or paper;

(8) All charges upon the merchandise, itemized by name and amount when known to the seller or shipper; or all charges by name (including commissions, insurance, freight, cases, containers, coverings, and cost of packing) included in the invoice prices when the amounts for such charges are unknown to the seller or shipper;

(9) All rebates, drawbacks, and bounties, separately itemized, allowed upon the exportation of the merchandise; and

(10) Any other fact that the Secretary may by regulation require as being necessary to a proper appraisement, examination and classification of the merchandise.

(b) Shipments not purchased and not shipped by manufacturer

If the merchandise is shipped to a person in the United States by a person other than the manufacturer, otherwise than by purchase, such person shall state on the invoice the time when, the place where, the person from whom such merchandise was purchased, and the price paid therefor in the currency of the purchase, stating whether gold, silver, or paper.

(c) Importer provision of information

Any information required to be set forth on an invoice may alternatively be provided by any of the parties qualifying as an “importer of record” under section 1484(a)(2)(B) of this title by such means, in such form or manner, and within such time as the Secretary shall by regulation prescribe.

(d) Exceptions by regulations

The Secretary of the Treasury may by regulations provide for such exceptions from the requirements of this section as he deems advisable and may allow for the submission or electronic transmission of partial invoices, electronic equivalents of invoices, bills, or other documents or parts thereof, required under this section.

 

§1482. Repealed. Pub. L. 103–182, title VI, §690(b)(8), Dec. 8, 1993, 107 Stat. 2223

 

§1483. Repealed. Pub. L. 97–446, title II, §201(c), Jan. 12, 1983, 96 Stat. 2349

  

§1484. Entry of merchandise

(a) Requirement and time

(1) Except as provided in sections 1490, 1498, 1552, and 1553 of this title, one of the parties qualifying as “importer of record” under paragraph (2)(B), either in person or by an agent authorized by the party in writing, shall, using reasonable care—

(A) make entry therefor by filing with the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection such documentation or, pursuant to an authorized electronic data interchange system, such information as is necessary to enable the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection to determine whether the merchandise may be released from custody of the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection; 1

(B) complete the entry, or substitute 1 or more reconfigured entries on an import activity summary statement, by filing with the Customs Service the declared value, classification and rate of duty applicable to the merchandise, and such other documentation or, pursuant to an electronic data interchange system, such other information as is necessary to enable the Customs Service to—

(i) properly assess duties on the merchandise,

(ii) collect accurate statistics with respect to the merchandise, and

(iii) determine whether any other applicable requirement of law (other than a requirement relating to release from customs custody) is met.

(2)(A) The documentation or information required under paragraph (1) with respect to any imported merchandise shall be filed or transmitted in such manner and within such time periods as the Secretary shall by regulation prescribe. Such regulations shall provide for the filing of import activity summary statements, and permit the filing of reconfigured entries, covering merchandise released under a special delivery permit pursuant to section 1448(b) of this title and entries or warehouse withdrawals made during a calendar month, within such time period as is prescribed in regulations but not to exceed the 20th day following such calendar month. Entries filed under paragraph (1)(A) shall not be liquidated if covered by an import activity summary statement, but instead each reconfigured entry in the import activity summary statement shall be subject to liquidation or reliquidation pursuant to section 1500, 1501, or 1504 of this title.

(B) When an entry of merchandise is made under this section, the required documentation or information shall be filed or electronically transmitted either by the owner or purchaser of the merchandise or, when appropriately designated by the owner, purchaser, or consignee of the merchandise, a person holding a valid license under section 1641 of this title. When a consignee declares on entry that he is the owner or purchaser of merchandise the Customs Service may, without liability, accept the declaration. For the purposes of this chapter, the importer of record must be one of the parties who is eligible to file the documentation or information required by this section.

(C) The Secretary, in prescribing regulations to carry out this subsection, shall establish procedures which insure the accuracy and timeliness of import statistics, particularly statistics relevant to the classification and valuation of imports. Corrections of errors in such statistical data shall be transmitted immediately to the Director of the Bureau of the Census, who shall make corrections in the statistics maintained by the Bureau. The Secretary shall also provide, to the maximum extent practicable, for the protection of the revenue, the enforcement of laws governing the importation and exportation of merchandise, the facilitation of the commerce of the United States, and the equal treatment of all importers of record of imported merchandise.

(b) Reconciliation

(1) In general

A party may elect to file a reconciliation with regard to such entry elements as are identified by the party pursuant to regulations prescribed by the Secretary. If the party so elects, the party shall declare that a reconciliation will be filed. The declaration shall be made in such manner as the Secretary shall prescribe and at the time the documentation or information required by subsection (a)(1)(B) of this section or the import activity summary statement is filed with, or transmitted to, the Customs Service, or at such later time as the Customs Service may, in its discretion, permit. The reconciliation shall be filed by the importer of record at such time and in such manner as the Secretary prescribes but not later than 21 months after the date the importer declares his intent to file the reconciliation. In the case of reconciling issues relating to the assessment of antidumping and countervailing duties, the reconciliation shall be filed not later than 90 days after the date the Customs Service advises the importer that the period of review for antidumping or countervailing duty purposes has been completed. Before filing a reconciliation, an importer of record shall post bond or other security pursuant to such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe.

(2) Regulations regarding AD/CV duties

The Secretary shall prescribe, in consultation with the Secretary of Commerce, such regulations as are necessary to adapt the reconciliation process for use in the collection of antidumping and countervailing duties.

(c) Release of merchandise

The Customs Service may permit the entry and release of merchandise from customs custody in accordance with such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe. No officer of the Customs Service shall be liable to any person with respect to the delivery of merchandise released from customs custody in accordance with such regulations.

(d) Signing and contents

(1) Entries shall be signed by the importer of record, or his agent, unless filed pursuant to an electronic data interchange system. If electronically filed, each transmission of data shall be certified by an importer of record or his agent, one of whom shall be resident in the United States for purposes of receiving service of process, as being true and correct to the best of his knowledge and belief, and such transmission shall be binding in the same manner and to the same extent as a signed document. The entry shall set forth such facts in regard to the importation as the Secretary may require and shall be accompanied by such invoices, bills of lading, certificates, and documents, or their electronically submitted equivalents, as are required by regulation.

(2) The Secretary, in prescribing regulations governing the content of entry documentation, shall require that entry documentation contain such information as may be necessary to determine whether the imported merchandise bears an infringing trademark in violation of section 1124 of title 15 or any other applicable law, including a trademark appearing on the goods or packaging.

(e) Production of invoice

The Secretary may provide by regulation for the production of an invoice, parts thereof, or the electronic equivalents thereof, in such manner and form, and under such terms and conditions, as the Secretary considers necessary.

(f) Statistical enumeration

The Secretary, the Secretary of Commerce, and the United States International Trade Commission shall establish from time to time for statistical purposes an enumeration of articles in such detail as in their judgment may be necessary, comprehending all merchandise imported into the United States and exported from the United States, and shall seek, in conjunction with statistical programs for domestic production and programs for achieving international harmonization of trade statistics, to establish the comparability thereof with such enumeration of articles. All import entries and export declarations shall include or have attached thereto an accurate statement specifying, in terms of such detailed enumeration, the kinds and quantities of all merchandise imported and exported and the value of the total quantity of each kind of article.

(g) Statement of cost of production

Under such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe, the Customs Service may require a verified statement from the manufacturer or producer showing the cost of producing the imported merchandise, if the Customs Service considers such verification necessary for the appraisement of such merchandise.

(h) Admissibility of data electronically transmitted

Any entry or other information transmitted by means of an authorized electronic data interchange system shall be admissible in any and all administrative and judicial proceedings as evidence of such entry or information.

(i) Special rule for foreign trade zone operations

(1) In general

Notwithstanding any other provision of law and except as provided in paragraph (3), all merchandise (including merchandise of different classes, types, and categories), withdrawn from a foreign trade zone during any 7-day period, shall, at the option of the operator or user of the zone, be the subject of a single estimated entry or release filed on or before the first day of the 7-day period in which the merchandise is to be withdrawn from the zone. The estimated entry or release shall be treated as a single entry and a single release of merchandise for purposes of section 58c(a)(9)(A) of this title and all fee exclusions and limitations of such section 58c of this title shall apply, including the maximum and minimum fee amounts provided for under subsection (b)(8)(A)(i) of such section. The entry summary for the estimated entry or release shall cover only the merchandise actually withdrawn from the foreign trade zone during the 7-day period.

(2) Other requirements

The Secretary of the Treasury may require that the operator or user of the zone—

(A) use an electronic data interchange approved by the Customs Service—

(i) to file the entries described in paragraph (1); and

(ii) to pay the applicable duties, fees, and taxes with respect to the entries; and

(B) satisfy the Customs Service that accounting, transportation, and other controls over the merchandise are adequate to protect the revenue and meet the requirements of other Federal agencies.

(3) Exception

The provisions of paragraph (1) shall not apply to merchandise the entry of which is prohibited by law or merchandise for which the filing of an entry summary is required before the merchandise is released from customs custody.

(4) Foreign trade zone; zone

In this subsection, the terms “foreign trade zone” and “zone” mean a zone established pursuant to the Act of June 18, 1934, commonly known as the Foreign Trade Zones Act (19 U.S.C. 81a et seq.).

(j) Treatment of multiple entries of merchandise as single transaction

In the case of merchandise that is purchased and invoiced as a single entity but—

(1) is shipped in an unassembled or disassembled condition in separate shipments due to the size or nature of the merchandise, or

(2) is shipped in separate shipments due to the inability of the carrier to include all of the merchandise in a single shipment (at the instruction of the carrier),

the Customs Service may, upon application by an importer in advance, treat such separate shipments for entry purposes as a single transaction.

 

§1484a. Articles returned from space not to be construed as importation

The return of articles from space shall not be considered an importation, and an entry of such articles shall not be required, if:

(1) such articles were previously launched into space from the customs territory of the United States aboard a spacecraft operated by, or under the control of, United States persons and owned—

(A) wholly by United States persons, or

(B) in substantial part by United States persons, or

(C) by the United States;

(2) such articles were maintained or utilized while in space solely on board such spacecraft or aboard another spacecraft which meets the requirements of paragraph (1)(A) through (C) of this section; and

(3) such articles were returned to the customs territory directly from space aboard such spacecraft or aboard another spacecraft which meets the requirements of paragraph (1)(A) through (C) of this section;

without regard to whether such articles have been advanced in value or improved in condition by any process of manufacture or other means while in space.

 

§1484b. Deferral of duty on large yachts imported for sale at United States boat shows

(a) In general

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any vessel meeting the definition of a large yacht as provided in subsection (b) of this section and which is otherwise dutiable may be imported without the payment of duty if imported with the intention to offer for sale at a boat show in the United States. Payment of duty shall be deferred, in accordance with this section, until such large yacht is sold.

(b) Definition

As used in this section, the term “large yacht” means a vessel that exceeds 79 feet in length, is used primarily for recreation or pleasure, and has been previously sold by a manufacturer or dealer to a retail consumer.

(c) Deferral of duty

At the time of importation of any large yacht, if such large yacht is imported for sale at a boat show in the United States and is otherwise dutiable, duties shall not be assessed and collected if the importer of record—

(1) certifies to the Customs Service that the large yacht is imported pursuant to this section for sale at a boat show in the United States; and

(2) posts a bond, which shall have a duration of 6 months after the date of importation, in an amount equal to twice the amount of duty on the large yacht that would otherwise be imposed under subheading 8903.91.00 or 8903.92.00 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States.

(d) Procedures upon sale

(1) Deposit of duty

If any large yacht (which has been imported for sale at a boat show in the United States with the deferral of duties as provided in this section) is sold within the 6-month period after importation—

(A) entry shall be completed and duty (calculated at the applicable rates provided for under subheading 8903.91.00 or 8903.92.00 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States and based upon the value of the large yacht at the time of importation) shall be deposited with the Customs Service; and

(B) the bond posted as required by subsection (c)(2) of this section shall be returned to the importer.

(e) Procedures upon expiration of bond period

(1) In general

If the large yacht entered with deferral of duties is neither sold nor exported within the 6-month period after importation—

(A) entry shall be completed and duty (calculated at the applicable rates provided for under subheading 8903.91.00 or 8903.92.00 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States and based upon the value of the large yacht at the time of importation) shall be deposited with the Customs Service; and

(B) the bond posted as required by subsection (c)(2) of this section shall be returned to the importer.

(2) Additional requirements

No extensions of the bond period shall be allowed. Any large yacht exported in compliance with the bond period may not be reentered for purposes of sale at a boat show in the United States (in order to receive duty deferral benefits) for a period of 3 months after such exportation.

(f) Regulations

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to make such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.

 

§1485. Declaration

(a) Requirement; form and contents

Every importer of record making an entry under the provisions of section 1484 of this title shall make and file or transmit electronically therewith, in a form and manner to be prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury, a declaration under oath, stating—

(1) Whether the merchandise is imported in pursuance of a purchase or an agreement to purchase, or whether it is imported otherwise than in pursuance of a purchase or agreement to purchase;

(2) That the prices set forth in the invoice are true, in the case of merchandise purchased or agreed to be purchased; or in the case of merchandise secured otherwise than by purchase or agreement to purchase, that the statements in such invoice as to value or price are true to the best of his knowledge and belief;

(3) That all other statements in the invoice or other documents filed with the entry, or in the entry itself, are true and correct; and

(4) That he will produce at once to the appropriate customs officer any invoice, paper, letter, document, or information received showing that any such prices or statements are not true or correct.

(b) Books and periodicals

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to prescribe regulations for one declaration in the case of books, magazines, newspapers, and periodicals published and imported in successive parts, numbers, or volumes, and entitled to free entry.

(c) Agents

In the event that an entry is made by an agent under the provisions of section 1484 of this title and such agent is not in possession of such declaration of the importer of record, such agent shall give a bond to produce such declaration.

(d) Liability of importer of record for increased duties

An importer of record shall not be liable for any additional or increased duties if (1) he declares at the time of entry that he is not the actual owner of the merchandise, (2) he furnishes the name and address of such owner, and (3) within ninety days from the date of entry he produces a declaration of such owner conditioned that he will pay all additional and increased duties, under such regulations as the Secretary of the Treasury may prescribe. Such owner shall possess all the rights of an importer of record.

(e) Separate forms for purchase and nonpurchase importations

The Secretary of the Treasury shall prescribe separate forms for the declaration in the case of merchandise which is imported in pursuance of a purchase or agreement to purchase and merchandise which is imported otherwise than in pursuance of a purchase or agreement to purchase.

(f) Deceased or insolvent persons; partnerships and corporations

Whenever such merchandise is consigned to a deceased person, or to an insolvent person who has assigned the same for the benefit of his creditors, the executor or administrator, or the assignee of such person or trustee in a case under title 11, shall be considered as the importer of record; when consigned to a partnership the declaration of one of the partners only shall be required, and when consigned to a corporation such declaration may be made by any officer of such corporation. Whether the importer of record is an individual, a partnership, or a corporation, the declaration may be made by any person who has knowledge of the facts and who is specifically authorized by such individual, a member of such partnership, or an officer of such corporation to make such declaration.

(g) Exported merchandise returned as undeliverable

With respect to any importation of merchandise to which General Headnote 4(e) of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States applies, any person who gained any benefit from, or met any obligation to, the United States as a result of the prior exportation of such merchandise shall, in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary, within a reasonable time inform the Customs Service of the return of the merchandise.

 

§1486. Administration of oaths

(a) Customs officers

The following officers and employees may administer any oaths required or authorized by law or regulations promulgated thereunder in respect of any matter coming before such officers or employees in the performance of their official duties: (1) Any customs officer appointed by the President; (2) the chief assistant of any such officer, or any officer or employee of the customs field service designated for the purpose by such officer or by the Secretary of the Treasury; and (3) any officer or employee of the United States Customs Service designated for the purpose by the Secretary of the Treasury.

(b) Postmasters

The postmaster or assistant postmaster of the United States at any post office where customs officers are not stationed, is authorized to administer any oaths required to be made to statements in customs documents by importers of merchandise, not exceeding $100 in value, through the mails.

(c) No compensation

No compensation or fee shall be demanded or accepted for administering any oath under the provisions of this section.

(d) Verification in lieu of oath

The Secretary of the Treasury may by regulation prescribe that any document required by any law administered by the Customs Service to be under oath may be verified by a written declaration in such form as he shall prescribe, such declaration to be in lieu of the oath otherwise required.

 

§1487. Value in entry; amendment

The importer of record or his agent may, under such regulations as the Secretary of the Treasury may prescribe, at the time entry is made, make in the entry such additions to or deductions from the cost or value given in the invoice as, in his opinion, may raise or lower the same to the value of such merchandise.

 

§1488. Repealed. Pub. L. 91–271, title II, §204(b), June 2, 1970, 84 Stat. 283

 

§1489. Repealed. Pub. L. 87–456, title III, §301(a), May 24, 1962, 76 Stat. 75

 

§1490. General orders

(a) Incomplete entry

(1) Whenever—

(A) the entry of any imported merchandise is not made within the time provided by law or by regulation prescribed by the Secretary;

(B) the entry of imported merchandise is incomplete because of failure to pay the estimated duties, fees, or interest;

(C) in the opinion of the Customs Service, the entry of imported merchandise cannot be made for want of proper documents or other cause; or

(D) the Customs Service believes that any merchandise is not correctly and legally invoiced;

the carrier (unless subject to subsection (c) of this section) shall notify the bonded warehouse of such unentered merchandise.

(2) After notification under paragraph (1), the bonded warehouse shall arrange for the transportation and storage of the merchandise at the risk and expense of the consignee. The merchandise shall remain in the bonded warehouse until—

(A) entry is made or completed and the proper documents are produced;

(B) the information and data necessary for entry are transmitted to the Customs Service pursuant to an authorized electronic data interchange system; or

(C) a bond is given for the production of documents or the transmittal of data.

(b) Request for possession by Customs

At the request of the consignee of any merchandise, or of the owner or master of the vessel or the person in charge of the vehicle in which the same is imported, any merchandise may be taken possession of by the Customs Service after the expiration of one day after the entry of the vessel or report of the vehicle and may be unladen and held at the risk and expense of the consignee until entry thereof is made.

(c) Government merchandise

Any imported merchandise that—

(1) is described in any of subparagraphs (A) through (D) of subsection (a)(1) of this section; and

(2) is consigned to, or owned by, the United States Government;

shall be stored and disposed of in accordance with such rules and procedures as the Secretary shall by regulation prescribe.

 

§1491. Unclaimed merchandise; disposition of forfeited distilled spirits, wines and malt liquor

(a) Appraisal and sale of unclaimed merchandise

Any entered or unentered merchandise (except merchandise entered under section 1557 of this title, but including merchandise entered for transportation in bond or for exportation) which shall remain in a bonded warehouse pursuant to section 1490 of this title for 6 months from the date of importation thereof, without all estimated duties, taxes, fees, interest, storage, or other charges thereon having been paid, shall be considered unclaimed and abandoned to the Government and shall be appraised and sold by the Customs Service at public auction under such regulations as the Secretary of the Treasury shall prescribe. All gunpowder and other explosive substances and merchandise liable to depreciation in value by damage, leakage, or other cause to such extent that the proceeds of sale thereof may be insufficient to pay the duties, taxes, fees, interest, storage, and other charges, if permitted to remain in 1 pursuant to section 1490 of this title in a bonded warehouse for 6 months, may be sold forthwith, under such regulations as the Secretary of the Treasury may prescribe. Merchandise subject to sale hereunder or under section 1559 of this title may be entered or withdrawn for consumption at any time prior to such sale upon payment of all duties, taxes, fees, interest, storage, and other charges, and expenses that may have accrued thereon, but such merchandise after becoming subject to sale may not be exported prior to sale without the payment of such duties, taxes, fees, interest, charges, and expenses nor may it be entered for warehouse. The computation of duties, taxes, interest, and fees for the purposes of this section and sections 1493 and 1559 of this title shall be at the rate or rates applicable at the time the merchandise becomes subject to sale.

(b) Notice of title vesting in United States

At the end of the 6-month period referred to in subsection (a) of this section, the Customs Service may, in lieu of sale of the merchandise, provide notice to all known interested parties that the title to such merchandise shall be considered to vest in the United States free and clear of any liens or encumbrances, on the 30th day after the date of the notice unless, before such 30th day—

(1) the subject merchandise is entered or withdrawn for consumption; and

(2) payment is made of all duties, taxes, fees, transfer and storage charges, and other expenses that may have accrued thereon.

(c) Retention, transfer, destruction, or other disposition

If title to any merchandise vests in the United States by operation of subsection (b) of this section, such merchandise may be retained by the Customs Service for official use, transferred to any other Federal agency or to any State or local agency, destroyed, or otherwise disposed of in accordance with such regulations as the Secretary shall prescribe. All transfer and storage charges or expenses accruing on retained or transferred merchandise shall be paid by the receiving agency.

(d) Petition

Whenever any party, having lost a substantial interest in merchandise by virtue of title vesting in the United States under subsection (b) of this section, can establish such title or interest to the satisfaction of the Secretary within 30 days after the day on which title vests in the United States under subsection (b) of this section, or can establish to the satisfaction of the Secretary that the party did not receive notice under subsection (b) of this section, the Secretary may, upon receipt of a timely and proper petition and upon finding that the facts and circumstances warrant, pay such party out of the Treasury of the United States the amount the Secretary believes the party would have received under section 1493 of this title had the merchandise been sold and a proper claim filed. The decision of the Secretary with respect to any such petition is final and conclusive on all parties.

(e) Appraisal and sale or other disposition of forfeited distilled spirits, wines, and malt liquor

All distilled spirits, wines, and malt liquor forfeited to the Government summarily or by order of court, under any provision of law administered by the United States Customs Service, shall be appraised and disposed of by—

(1) delivery to such Government agencies, as in the opinion of the Secretary have a need for such distilled spirits, wines, and malt liquor for medical, scientific, or mechanical purposes, or for any other official purpose for which appropriated funds may be expended by a Government agency:

(2) gifts to such eleemosynary institutions as, in the opinion of the Secretary, have a need for such distilled spirits, wines, and malt liquor for medical purposes;

(3) sale by Customs Service at public auction under such regulations as the Secretary shall prescribe, except that before making any such sale the Secretary shall determine that no Government agency or eleemosynary institution has established a need for such spirits, wines, and malt liquor under paragraph (1) or (2); or

(4) destruction.

 

§1492. Destruction of abandoned or forfeited merchandise

Except as provided in R.S. §3369 (relating to tobacco and snuff), and in section 901 of the Revenue Act of 1926 (relating to distilled spirits), any merchandise abandoned or forfeited to the Government under the preceding or any other provision of the customs laws, which is subject to internal revenue tax and which the Customs Service shall be satisfied will not sell for a sufficient amount to pay such taxes, shall be forthwith destroyed, retained for official use, or otherwise disposed of under regulations to be prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury, instead of being sold at auction.

 

§1493. Proceeds of sale

The surplus of the proceeds of sales under section 1491 of this title, after the payment of storage charges, expenses, duties, taxes, and fees, and the satisfaction of any lien for freight, charges, or contribution in general average, shall be deposited in the Treasury of the United States, if claim therefor shall not be filed with the Customs Service within ten days from the date of sale, and the sale of such merchandise shall exonerate the master of any vessel in which the merchandise was imported from all claims of the owner thereof, who shall, nevertheless, on due proof of his interest, be entitled to receive from the Treasury the amount of any surplus of the proceeds of sale.

 

§1494. Expense of weighing and measuring

In all cases in which the invoice or entry does not state the weight, quantity, or measure of the merchandise, the expense of ascertaining the same shall be collected from the importer of record before its release from customs custody.

 

§1495. Partnership bond

When any bond is required by law or regulations to be executed by any partnership for any purpose connected with the transaction of business at any customhouse, the execution of such bond by any member of such partnership shall bind the other partners in like manner and to the same extent as if such other partners had personally joined in the execution, and an action or suit may be instituted on such bond against all partners as if all had executed the same.

 

§1496. Examination of baggage

The appropriate customs officer may cause an examination to be made of the baggage of any person arriving in the United States in order to ascertain what articles are contained therein and whether subject to duty, free of duty, or prohibited notwithstanding a declaration and entry therefor has been made.

 

§1496a. Clearance restrictions of individuals returning from abroad; special circumstances; “baggage and effects” defined

Except as otherwise provided by law, no individual returning to the United States from abroad shall be—

(1) entitled to the admission of his or her baggage and effects free of duty without entry; or

(2) entitled to expedited customs examination and clearance of his or her baggage and effects.

Paragraph (2) shall not apply to individuals in special circumstances (including being seriously ill or infirm, having been summoned by news of affliction or disaster, and accompanying the body of a deceased relative). For purposes of this section, the term “baggage and effects” means any article which was in the possession of the individual while abroad and is being imported in connection with his or her arrival and is intended for his or her bona fide personal or household use. Such term does not include any article imported as an accommodation to others or for sale or other commercial use.

 

§1497. Penalties for failure to declare

(a) In general

(1) Any article which—

(A) is not included in the declaration and entry as made or transmitted; and

(B) is not mentioned before examination of the baggage begins—

(i) in writing by such person, if written declaration and entry was required, or

(ii) orally, if written declaration and entry was not required;

shall be subject to forfeiture and such person shall be liable for a penalty determined under paragraph (2) with respect to such article.

(2) The amount of the penalty imposed under paragraph (1) with respect to any article is equal to—

(A) if the article is a controlled substance, either $500 or an amount equal to 1,000 percent of the value of the article, whichever amount is greater; and

(B) if the article is not a controlled substance, the value of the article.

(b) Value of controlled substances

(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, the value of any controlled substance shall, for purposes of this section, be equal to the amount determined by the Secretary in consultation with the Attorney General of the United States, to be equal to the price at which such controlled substance is likely to be illegally sold to the consumer of such controlled substance.

(2) The Secretary and the Attorney General of the United States shall establish a method of determining the price at which each controlled substance is likely to be illegally sold to the consumer of such controlled substance.

 

§1498. Entry under regulations

(a) Authorized for certain merchandise

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to prescribe rules and regulations for the declaration and entry of—

(1) Merchandise, when—

(A) the aggregate value of the shipment does not exceed an amount specified by the Secretary by regulation, but not more than $2,500; or

(B) different commercial facilitation and risk considerations that may vary for different classes or kinds of merchandise or different classes of transactions may dictate;

(2) Products of the United States, when the aggregate value of the shipment does not exceed such amounts as the Secretary may prescribe and the products are imported.

(A) for the purposes of repair or alteration prior to reexportation, or

(B) after having been either rejected or returned by the foreign purchaser to the United States for credit;

(3) Merchandise damaged on the voyage of importation, by fire or through marine casualty or any other cause, without fault on the part of the shipper;

(4) Merchandise recovered from a wrecked or stranded vessel;

(5) Household effects used abroad and personal effects, not imported in pursuance of a purchase or agreement for purchase and not intended for sale;

(6) Articles sent by persons in foreign countries as gifts to persons in the United States;

(7) Articles carried on the person or contained in the baggage of a person arriving in the United States;

(8) Tools of trade of a person arriving in the United States;

(9) Personal effects of citizens of the United States who have died in a foreign country;

(10) Merchandise within the provisions of sections 1465 1 and 1466 of this title (relating to supplies, repairs, and equipment on vessels and railway cars) at the first port of arrival;

(11) Merchandise when in the opinion of the Secretary of the Treasury the value thereof cannot be declared; and

(12) Merchandise within the provisions of paragraph 1631 of section 1201 of this title.

(b) Application of general provisions

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to include in such rules and regulations any of the provisions of section 1484 or 1485 of this title (relating, respectively, to entry and to declaration of merchandise generally).

 

§1499. Examination of merchandise

(a) Entry examination

(1) In general

Imported merchandise that is required by law or regulation to be inspected, examined, or appraised shall not be delivered from customs custody (except under such bond or other security as may be prescribed by the Secretary to assure compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, and instructions which the Secretary or the Customs Service is authorized to enforce) until the merchandise has been inspected, appraised, or examined and is reported by the Customs Service to have been truly and correctly invoiced and found to comply with the requirements of the laws of the United States.

(2) Examination

The Customs Service—

(A) shall designate the packages or quantities of merchandise covered by any invoice or entry which are to be opened and examined for the purpose of appraisement or otherwise;

(B) shall order such packages or quantities to be sent to such place as is designated by the Secretary by regulation for such purpose;

(C) may require such additional packages or quantities as the Secretary considers necessary for such purpose; and

(D) shall inspect a sufficient number of shipments, and shall examine a sufficient number of entries, to ensure compliance with the laws enforced by the Customs Service.

(3) Unspecified articles

If any package contains any article not specified in the invoice or entry and, in the opinion of the Customs Service, the article was omitted from the invoice or entry—

(A) with fraudulent intent on the part of the seller, shipper, owner, agent, importer of record, or entry filer, the contents of the entire package in which such article is found shall be subject to seizure; or

(B) without fraudulent intent, the value of the article shall be added to the entry and the duties, fees, and taxes thereon paid accordingly.

(4) Deficiency

If a deficiency is found in quantity, weight, or measure in the examination of any package, the person finding the deficiency shall make a report thereof to the Customs Service. The Customs Service shall make allowance for the deficiency in the liquidation of duties.

(5) Information required for release

If an examination is conducted, any information required for release shall be provided, either electronically or in paper form, to the Customs Service at the port of examination. The absence of such information does not limit the authority of the Customs Service to conduct an examination.

(b) Testing laboratories

(1) Accreditation of private testing laboratories

The Customs Service shall establish and implement a procedure, under regulations promulgated by the Secretary, for accrediting private laboratories within the United States which may be used to perform tests (that would otherwise be performed by Customs Service laboratories) to establish the characteristics, quantities, or composition of imported merchandise. Such regulations—

(A) shall establish the conditions required for the laboratories to receive and maintain accreditation for purposes of this subsection;

(B) shall establish the conditions regarding the suspension and revocation of accreditation, which may include the imposition of a monetary penalty not to exceed $100,000 and such penalty is in addition to the recovery, from a gauger or laboratory accredited under paragraph (1), of any loss of revenue that may have occurred, but the Customs Service—

(i) may seek to recover lost revenue only in cases where the gauger or laboratory intentionally falsified the analysis or gauging report in collusion with the importer; and

(ii) shall neither assess penalties nor seek to recover lost revenue because of a good faith difference of professional opinion; and

(C) may provide for the imposition of a reasonable charge for accreditation and periodic reaccreditation.

The collection of any charge for accreditation and reaccreditation under this section is not prohibited by section 58c(e)(6) of this title.

(2) Appeal of adverse accreditation decisions

A laboratory applying for accreditation, or that is accredited, under this section may contest any decision or order of the Customs Service denying, suspending, or revoking accreditation, or imposing a monetary penalty, by commencing an action in accordance with chapter 169 of title 28 in the Court of International Trade within 60 days after issuance of the decision or order.

(3) Testing by accredited laboratories

When requested by an importer of record of merchandise, the Customs Service shall authorize the release to the importer of a representative sample of the merchandise for testing, at the expense of the importer, by a laboratory accredited under paragraph (1). The testing results from a laboratory accredited under paragraph (1) that are submitted by an importer of record with respect to merchandise in an entry shall, in the absence of testing results obtained from a Customs Service laboratory, be accepted by the Customs Service if the importer of record certifies that the sample tested was taken from the merchandise in the entry. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to limit in any way or preclude the authority of the Customs Service to test or analyze any sample or merchandise independently.

(4) Availability of testing procedure, methodologies, and information

Testing procedures and methodologies used by the Customs Service, and information resulting from any testing conducted by the Customs Service, shall be made available as follows:

(A) Testing procedures and methodologies shall be made available upon request to any person unless the procedures or methodologies are—

(i) proprietary to the holder of a copyright or patent related to such procedures or methodologies, or

(ii) developed by the Customs Service for enforcement purposes.

(B) Information resulting from testing shall be made available upon request to the importer of record and any agent thereof unless the information reveals information which is—

(i) proprietary to the holder of a copyright or patent; or

(ii) developed by the Customs Service for enforcement purposes.

(5) Miscellaneous provisions

For purposes of this subsection—

(A) any reference to a private laboratory includes a reference to a private gauger; and

(B) accreditation of private laboratories extends only to the performance of functions by such laboratories that are within the scope of those responsibilities for determinations of the elements relating to admissibility, quantity, composition, or characteristics of imported merchandise that are vested in, or delegated to, the Customs Service.

(c) Detentions

Except in the case of merchandise with respect to which the determination of admissibility is vested in an agency other than the Customs Service, the following apply:

(1) In general

Within the 5-day period (excluding weekends and holidays) following the date on which merchandise is presented for customs examination, the Customs Service shall decide whether to release or detain the merchandise. Merchandise which is not released within such 5-day period shall be considered to be detained merchandise.

(2) Notice of detention

The Customs Service shall issue a notice to the importer or other party having an interest in detained merchandise no later than 5 days, excluding weekends and holidays, after the decision to detain the merchandise is made. The notice shall advise the importer or other interested party of—

(A) the initiation of the detention;

(B) the specific reason for the detention;

(C) the anticipated length of the detention;

(D) the nature of the tests or inquiries to be conducted; and

(E) the nature of any information which, if supplied to the Customs Service, may accelerate the disposition of the detention.

(3) Testing results

Upon request by the importer or other party having an interest in detained merchandise, the Customs Service shall provide the party with copies of the results of any testing conducted by the Customs Service on the merchandise and a description of the testing procedures and methodologies (unless such procedures or methodologies are proprietary to the holder of a copyright or patent or were developed by the Customs Service for enforcement purposes). The results and test description shall be in sufficient detail to permit the duplication and analysis of the testing and the results.

(4) Seizure and forfeiture

If otherwise provided by law, detained merchandise may be seized and forfeited.

(5) Effect of failure to make determination

(A) The failure by the Customs Service to make a final determination with respect to the admissibility of detained merchandise within 30 days after the merchandise has been presented for customs examination, or such longer period if specifically authorized by law, shall be treated as a decision of the Customs Service to exclude the merchandise for purposes of section 1514(a)(4) of this title.

(B) For purposes of section 1581 of title 28, a protest against the decision to exclude the merchandise which has not been allowed or denied in whole or in part before the 30th day after the day on which the protest was filed shall be treated as having been denied on such 30th day.

(C) Notwithstanding section 2639 of title 28, once an action respecting a detention is commenced, unless the Customs Service establishes by a preponderance of the evidence that an admissibility decision has not been reached for good cause, the court shall grant the appropriate relief which may include, but is not limited to, an order to cancel the detention and release the merchandise.

 

§1500. Appraisement, classification, and liquidation procedure

The Customs Service shall, under rules and regulations prescribed by the Secretary—

(a) fix the final appraisement of merchandise by ascertaining or estimating the value thereof, under section 1401a of this title, by all reasonable ways and means in his power, any statement of cost or costs of production in any invoice, affidavit, declaration, other document to the contrary notwithstanding;

(b) fix the final classification and rate of duty applicable to such merchandise;

(c) fix the final amount of duty to be paid on such merchandise and determine any increased or additional duties, taxes, and fees due or any excess of duties, taxes, and fees deposited;

(d) liquidate the entry and reconciliation, if any, of such merchandise; and

(e) give or transmit, pursuant to an electronic data interchange system, notice of such liquidation to the importer, his consignee, or agent in such form and manner as the Secretary shall by regulation prescribe.

 

§1501. Voluntary reliquidations by Customs Service

A liquidation made in accordance with section 1500 or 1504 of this title or any reliquidation thereof made in accordance with this section may be reliquidated in any respect by the Customs Service, notwithstanding the filing of a protest, within ninety days from the date on which notice of the original liquidation is given or transmitted to the importer, his consignee or agent. Notice of such reliquidation shall be given or transmitted in the manner prescribed with respect to original liquidations under section 1500(e) of this title.

 

§1502. Regulations for appraisement and classification

(a) Powers of Secretary of the Treasury

The Secretary of the Treasury shall establish and promulgate such rules and regulations not inconsistent with the law (including regulations establishing procedures for the issuance of binding rulings prior to the entry of the merchandise concerned), and may disseminate such information as may be necessary to secure a just, impartial, and uniform appraisement of imported merchandise and the classification and assessment of duties thereon at the various ports of entry. The Secretary may direct any customs officer to go from one port of entry to another for the purpose of appraising or classifying or assisting in appraising or classifying merchandise imported at any port, and may direct any customs officer at any port to review entries of merchandise filed at any other port.

(b) Duties of customs officers

It shall be the duty of all officers of the customs to execute and carry into effect all instructions of the Secretary of the Treasury relative to the execution of the revenue laws; and in case any difficulty arises as to the true construction or meaning of any part of the revenue laws, the decision of the Secretary shall be binding upon all officers of the customs.

 

§1503. Dutiable value

Except as provided in section 1520(c) of this title (relating to reliquidations on the basis of authorized corrections of errors) or section 1562 of this title (relating to withdrawal from manipulating warehouses), the basis for the assessment of duties on imported merchandise subject to ad valorem rates of duty or rates based upon or regulated in any manner by the value of the merchandise, shall be the appraised value determined upon liquidation, in accordance with section 1500 of this title or any adjustment thereof made pursuant to section 1501 of this title. Provided, however, That if reliquidation is required pursuant to a final judgment or order of the United States Court of International Trade which includes a reappraisement of imported merchandise, the basis for such assessment shall be the final appraised value determined by such court.

 

§1503a. Repealed. Aug. 8, 1953, ch. 397, §18(e), 67 Stat. 518

 

§1504. Limitation on liquidation

(a) Liquidation

(1) Entries for consumption

Unless an entry of merchandise for consumption is extended under subsection (b) of this section or suspended as required by statute or court order, except as provided in section 1675(a)(3) of this title, an entry of merchandise for consumption not liquidated within 1 year from—

(A) the date of entry of such merchandise,

(B) the date of the final withdrawal of all such merchandise covered by a warehouse entry,

(C) the date of withdrawal from warehouse of such merchandise for consumption if, pursuant to regulations issued under section 1505(a) of this title, duties may be deposited after the filing of any entry or withdrawal from warehouse,

(D) if a reconciliation is filed, or should have been filed, the date of the filing under section 1484 of this title or the date the reconciliation should have been filed, whichever is earlier; or

(E) if a reconfigured entry is filed under an import activity summary statement, the date the import activity summary statement is filed or should have been filed, whichever is earlier;

shall be deemed liquidated at the rate of duty, value, quantity, and amount of duties asserted by the importer of record. Notwithstanding section 1500(e) of this title, notice of liquidation need not be given of an entry deemed liquidated.

(2) Entries or claims for drawback

(A) In general

Except as provided in subparagraph (B) or (C), unless an entry or claim for drawback is extended under subsection (b) of this section or suspended as required by statute or court order, an entry or claim for drawback not liquidated within 1 year from the date of entry or claim shall be deemed liquidated at the drawback amount asserted by the claimant or claim. Notwithstanding section 1500(e) of this title, notice of liquidation need not be given of an entry deemed liquidated.

(B) Unliquidated imports

An entry or claim for drawback whose designated or identified import entries have not been liquidated and become final within the 1-year period described in subparagraph (A), or within the 1-year period described in subparagraph (C), shall be deemed liquidated upon the deposit of estimated duties on the unliquidated imported merchandise, and upon the filing with the Customs Service of a written request for the liquidation of the drawback entry or claim. Such a request must include a waiver of any right to payment or refund under other provisions of law. The Secretary of the Treasury shall prescribe any necessary regulations for the purpose of administering this subparagraph.

(C) Exception

An entry or claim for drawback filed before December 3, 2004, the liquidation of which is not final as of December 3, 2004, shall be deemed liquidated on the date that is 1 year after December 3, 2004, at the drawback amount asserted by the claimant at the time of the entry or claim.

(3) Payments or refunds

Payment or refund of duties owed pursuant to paragraph (1) or (2) shall be made to the importer of record or drawback claimant, as the case may be, not later than 90 days after liquidation.

(b) Extension

The Secretary of the Treasury may extend the period in which to liquidate an entry if—

(1) the information needed for the proper appraisement or classification of the imported or withdrawn merchandise, or for determining the correct drawback amount, or for ensuring compliance with applicable law, is not available to the Customs Service; or

(2) the importer of record or drawback claimant, as the case may be, requests such extension and shows good cause therefor.

The Secretary shall give notice of an extension under this subsection to the importer of record or drawback claimant, as the case may be, and the surety of such importer of record or drawback claimant. Notice shall be in such form and manner (which may include electronic transmittal) as the Secretary shall by regulation prescribe. Any entry the liquidation of which is extended under this subsection shall be treated as having been liquidated at the rate of duty, value, quantity, and amount of duty asserted by the importer of record, or the drawback amount asserted by the drawback claimant, at the expiration of 4 years from the applicable date specified in subsection (a) of this section.

(c) Notice of suspension

If the liquidation of any entry is suspended, the Secretary shall by regulation require that notice of the suspension be provided, in such manner as the Secretary considers appropriate, to the importer of record or drawback claimant, as the case may be, and to any authorized agent and surety of such importer of record or drawback claimant.

(d) Removal of suspension

Except as provided in section 1675(a)(3) of this title, when a suspension required by statute or court order is removed, the Customs Service shall liquidate the entry, unless liquidation is extended under subsection (b) of this section, within 6 months after receiving notice of the removal from the Department of Commerce, other agency, or a court with jurisdiction over the entry. Any entry (other than an entry with respect to which liquidation has been extended under subsection (b) of this section) not liquidated by the Customs Service within 6 months after receiving such notice shall be treated as having been liquidated at the rate of duty, value, quantity, and amount of duty asserted by the importer of record or (in the case of a drawback entry or claim) at the drawback amount asserted by the drawback claimant.

 

§1505. Payment of duties and fees

(a) Deposit of estimated duties and fees

Unless the entry is subject to a periodic payment referred to in this subsection or the merchandise is entered for warehouse or transportation, or under bond, the importer of record shall deposit with the Customs Service at the time of entry, or at such later time as the Secretary may prescribe by regulation (but not later than 12 working days after entry or release) the amount of duties and fees estimated to be payable on such merchandise. As soon as a periodic payment module of the Automated Commercial Environment is developed, but no later than October 1, 2004, the Secretary shall promulgate regulations, after testing the module, permitting a participating importer of record to deposit estimated duties and fees for entries of merchandise, other than merchandise entered for warehouse, transportation, or under bond, no later than the 15 working days following the month in which the merchandise is entered or released, whichever comes first.

(b) Collection or refund of duties, fees, and interest due upon liquidation or reliquidation

The Customs Service shall collect any increased or additional duties and fees due, together with interest thereon, or refund any excess moneys deposited, together with interest thereon, as determined on a liquidation or reliquidation. Duties, fees, and interest determined to be due upon liquidation or reliquidation are due 30 days after issuance of the bill for such payment. Refunds of excess moneys deposited, together with interest thereon, shall be paid within 30 days of liquidation or reliquidation.

(c) Interest

Interest assessed due to an underpayment of duties, fees, or interest shall accrue, at a rate determined by the Secretary, from the date the importer of record is required to deposit estimated duties, fees, and interest to the date of liquidation or reliquidation of the applicable entry or reconciliation. Interest on excess moneys deposited shall accrue, at a rate determined by the Secretary, from the date the importer of record deposits estimated duties, fees, and interest or, in a case in which a claim is made under section 1520(d) of this title, from the date on which such claim is made, to the date of liquidation or reliquidation of the applicable entry or reconciliation. The Secretary may prescribe an alternative mid-point interest accounting methodology, which may be employed by the importer, based upon aggregate data in lieu of accounting for such interest from each deposit data provided in this subsection.

(d) Delinquency

If duties, fees, and interest determined to be due or refunded are not paid in full within the 30-day period specified in subsection (b) of this section, any unpaid balance shall be considered delinquent and bear interest by 30-day periods, at a rate determined by the Secretary, from the date of liquidation or reliquidation until the full balance is paid. No interest shall accrue during the 30-day period in which payment is actually made.

 

§1506. Allowance for abandonment and damage

Allowance shall be made in the estimation and liquidation of duties under regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury in the following cases:

(1) Abandonment within thirty days

Where the importer abandons to the United States, within thirty days after entry in the case of merchandise released without an examination, or within thirty days after the release in the case of merchandise sent to the Customs Service for examination, any imported merchandise representing 5 per centum or more of the total value of all the merchandise of the same class or kind entered in the invoice or entry in which the item appears, and delivers, within the applicable thirty-day period, the portion so abandoned to such place as the Customs Service directs unless the Customs Service is satisfied that the merchandise is so far destroyed as to be nondeliverable;

(2) Perishable merchandise, condemned

Where fruit or other perishable merchandise has been condemned at the port of entry, within ten days after landing, by the health officers or other legally constituted authorities, and the consignee, within five days after such condemnation, files, electronically or otherwise, with the Customs Service notice thereof, an invoiced description and the location thereof, and the name of the vessel or vehicle in which imported.

 

§1507. Tare and draft

(a) In general

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to prescribe and issue regulations for the ascertainment of tare upon imported merchandise, including the establishment of reasonable and just schedule tares therefor, but (except as otherwise provided in this section) there shall not be any allowance for draft or for impurities, other than excessive moisture and impurities not usually found in or upon such or similar merchandise.

(b) Crude oil and petroleum products

In ascertaining tare on imports of crude oil, and on imports of petroleum products, allowance shall be made for all detectable moisture and impurities present in, or upon, the imported crude oil or petroleum products.

 

§1508. Recordkeeping

(a) Requirements

Any—

(1) owner, importer, consignee, importer of record, entry filer, or other party who—

(A) imports merchandise into the customs territory of the United States, files a drawback claim, or transports or stores merchandise carried or held under bond, or

(B) knowingly causes the importation or transportation or storage of merchandise carried or held under bond into or from the customs territory of the United States;

(2) agent of any party described in paragraph (1); or

(3) person whose activities require the filing of a declaration or entry, or both;

shall make, keep, and render for examination and inspection records (which for purposes of this section include, but are not limited to, statements, declarations, documents and electronically generated or machine readable data) which—

(A) pertain to any such activity, or to the information contained in the records required by this chapter in connection with any such activity; and

(B) are normally kept in the ordinary course of business.

(b) Exportations to NAFTA countries

(1) Definitions

As used in this subsection—

(A) The term “associated records” means, in regard to an exported good under paragraph (2), records associated with—

(i) the purchase of, cost of, value of, and payment for, the good;

(ii) the purchase of, cost of, value of, and payment for, all material, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and

(iii) the production of the good.

For purposes of this subparagraph, the terms “indirect material”, “material”, “preferential tariff treatment”, “used”, and “value” have the respective meanings given them in articles 415 and 514 of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

(B) The term “NAFTA Certificate of Origin” means the certification, established under article 501 of the North American Free Trade Agreement, that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2) Exports to NAFTA countries

(A) In general

Any person who completes and signs a NAFTA Certificate of Origin for a good for which preferential treatment under the North American Free Trade Agreement is claimed shall make, keep, and render for examination and inspection all records relating to the origin of the good (including the Certificate or copies thereof) and the associated records.

(B) Claims for certain waivers, reductions, or refunds of duties or for credit against bonds

(i) In general

Any person that claims with respect to an article—

(I) a waiver or reduction of duty under the eleventh paragraph of section 1311 of this title, section 1312(b)(1) or (4) of this title, section 1562(2) of this title, or the proviso preceding the last proviso to section 81c(a) of this title;

(II) a credit against a bond under section 1312(d) of this title; or

(III) a refund, waiver, or reduction of duty under section 1313(n)(2) or (o)(1) of this title;

 must disclose to the Customs Service the information described in clause (ii).

(ii) Information required

Within 30 days after making a claim described in clause (i) with respect to an article, the person making the claim must disclose to the Customs Service whether that person has prepared, or has knowledge that another person has prepared, a NAFTA Certificate of Origin for the article. If after such 30-day period the person making the claim either—

(I) prepares a NAFTA Certificate of Origin for the article; or

(II) learns of the existence of such a Certificate for the article;

 that person, within 30 days after the occurrence described in subclause (I) or (II), must disclose the occurrence to the Customs Service.

(iii) Action on claim

If the Customs Service determines that a NAFTA Certificate of Origin has been prepared with respect to an article for which a claim described in clause (i) is made, the Customs Service may make such adjustments regarding the previous customs treatment of the article as may be warranted.

(3) Exports under the Canadian agreement

Any person who exports, or who knowingly causes to be exported, any merchandise to Canada during such time as the United States-Canada Free-Trade Agreement is in force with respect to, and the United States applies that Agreement to, Canada shall make, keep, and render for examination and inspection such records (including certifications of origin or copies thereof) which pertain to the exportations.

(c) Period of time

The records required by subsections (a) and (b) of this section shall be kept for such periods of time as the Secretary shall prescribe; except that—

(1) no period of time for the retention of the records required under subsection (a) or (b)(3) of this section may exceed 5 years from the date of entry, filing of a reconciliation, or exportation, as appropriate;

(2) the period of time for the retention of the records required under subsection (b)(2) of this section shall be at least 5 years from the date of signature of the NAFTA Certificate of Origin; and

(3) records for any drawback claim shall be kept until the 3rd anniversary of the date of payment of the claim.

(d) Limitation

For the purposes of this section and section 1509 of this title, a person ordering merchandise from an importer in a domestic transaction does not knowingly cause merchandise to be imported unless—

(1) the terms and conditions of the importation are controlled by the person placing the order; or

(2) technical data, molds, equipment, other production assistance, material, components, or parts are furnished by the person placing the order with knowledge that they will be used in the manufacture or production of the imported merchandise.

(e) Subsection (b) penalties

(1) Relating to NAFTA exports

Any person who fails to retain records required by paragraph (2) of subsection (b) of this section or the regulations issued to implement that paragraph shall be liable for—

(A) a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000; or

(B) the general recordkeeping penalty that applies under the customs laws;

whichever penalty is higher.

(2) Relating to Canadian agreement exports

Any person who fails to retain the records required by paragraph (3) of subsection (b) of this section or the regulations issued to implement that paragraph shall be liable for a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000.

(f) Certificates of Origin for goods exported under the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement

(1) Definitions

In this subsection:

(A) Records and supporting documents

The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—

(i) the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;

(ii) if applicable, the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including recovered goods, used in the production of the good; and

(iii) if applicable, the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.

(B) Chile FTA Certificate of Origin

The term “Chile FTA Certificate of Origin” means the certification, established under article 4.13 of the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement, that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2) Exports to Chile

Any person who completes and issues a Chile FTA Certificate of Origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the Certificate or copies thereof).

(3) Retention period

Records and supporting documents shall be kept by the person who issued a Chile FTA Certificate of Origin for at least 5 years after the date on which the certificate was issued.

(g) Certifications of origin for goods exported under the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement

(1) Definitions

In this subsection:

(A) Records and supporting documents

The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—

(i) the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;

(ii) the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and

(iii) the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.

(B) CAFTA–DR certification of origin

The term “CAFTA–DR certification of origin” means the certification established under article 4.16 of the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2) Exports to CAFTA–DR countries

Any person who completes and issues a CAFTA–DR certification of origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof).

(3) Retention period

Records and supporting documents shall be kept by the person who issued a CAFTA–DR certification of origin for at least 5 years after the date on which the certification was issued.

(h) Certifications of origin for goods exported under the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement

(1) Definitions

In this subsection:

(A) Records and supporting documents

The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—

(i) the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;

(ii) the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and

(iii) the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.

(B) PTPA certification of origin

The term “PTPA certification of origin” means the certification established under article 4.15 of the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2) Exports to Peru

Any person who completes and issues a PTPA certification of origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof).

(3) Retention period

The person who issues a PTPA certification of origin shall keep the records and supporting documents relating to that certification of origin for a period of at least 5 years after the date on which the certification is issued.

(i) Penalties

Any person who fails to retain records and supporting documents required by subsection (f), (g), or (h) of this section or the regulations issued to implement any such subsection shall be liable for the greater of—

(1) a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000; or

(2) the general record keeping penalty that applies under the customs laws of the United States.

 

§1509. Examination of books and witnesses

(a) Authority

In any investigation or inquiry conducted for the purpose of ascertaining the correctness of any entry, for determining the liability of any person for duty, fees and taxes due or duties, fees and taxes which may be due the United States, for determining liability for fines and penalties, or for insuring compliance with the laws of the United States administered by the United States Customs Service, the Secretary (but no delegate of the Secretary below the rank of district director or special agent in charge) may—

(1) examine, or cause to be examined, upon reasonable notice, any record (which for purposes of this section, includes, but is not limited to, any statement, declaration, document, or electronically generated or machine readable data) described in the notice with reasonable specificity, which may be relevant to such investigation or inquiry, except that—

(A) if such record is required by law or regulation for the entry of the merchandise (whether or not the Customs Service required its presentation at the time of entry) it shall be provided to the Customs Service within a reasonable time after demand for its production is made, taking into consideration the number, type, and age of the item demanded; and

(B) if a person of whom demand is made under subparagraph (A) fails to comply with the demand, the person may be subject to penalty under subsection (g) of this section;

(2) summon, upon reasonable notice—

(A) the person who—

(i) imported, or knowingly caused to be imported, merchandise into the customs territory of the United States,

(ii) exported merchandise, or knowingly caused merchandise to be exported, to a NAFTA country (as defined in section 3301(4) of this title) or to Canada during such time as the United States-Canada Free-Trade Agreement is in force with respect to, and the United States applies that Agreement to, Canada,

(iii) transported or stored merchandise that was or is carried or held under customs bond, or knowingly caused such transportation or storage, or

(iv) filed a declaration, entry, or drawback claim with the Customs Service;

(B) any officer, employee, or agent of any person described in subparagraph (A);

(C) any person having possession, custody or care of records relating to the importation or other activity described in subparagraph (A); or

(D) any other person he may deem proper;

to appear before the appropriate customs officer at the time and place within the customs territory of the United States specified in the summons (except that no witness may be required to appear at any place more than one hundred miles distant from the place where he was served with the summons), to produce records, as defined in subsection (d)(1)(A) of this section, and to give such testimony, under oath, as may be relevant to such investigation or inquiry; and

(3) take, or cause to be taken, such testimony of the person concerned, under oath, as may be relevant to such investigation or inquiry.

(b) Regulatory audit procedures

(1) In conducting a regulatory audit under this section (which does not include a quantity verification for a customs bonded warehouse or general purpose foreign trade zone), the Customs Service auditor shall provide the person being audited, in advance of the audit, with a reasonable estimate of the time to be required for the audit. If in the course of an audit it becomes apparent that additional time will be required, the Customs Service auditor shall immediately provide a further estimate of such additional time.

(2) Before commencing an audit, the Customs Service auditor shall inform the party to be audited of his right to an entry conference at which time the purpose will be explained and an estimated termination date set. Upon completion of on-site audit activities, the Customs Service auditor shall schedule a closing conference to explain the preliminary results of the audit.

(3) Except as provided in paragraph (5), if the estimated or actual termination date for an audit passes without the Customs Service auditor providing a closing conference to explain the results of the audit, the person being audited may petition in writing for such a conference to the officer designated pursuant to regulations, who, upon receipt of such a request, shall provide for such a conference to be held within 15 days after the date of receipt.

(4) Except as provided in paragraph (5), the Customs Service auditor shall complete the formal written audit report within 90 days following the closing conference unless the officer designated pursuant to regulations provides written notice to the person being audited of the reason for any delay and the anticipated completion date. After application of any exemption contained in section 552 of title 5, a copy of the formal written audit report shall be sent to the person audited no later than 30 days following completion of the report.

(5) Paragraphs (3) and (4) shall not apply after the Customs Service commences a formal investigation with respect to the issue involved.

(6)(A) If during the course of any audit concluded under this subsection, the Customs Service identifies overpayments of duties or fees or over-declarations of quantities or values that are within the time period and scope of the audit that the Customs Service has defined, then in calculating the loss of revenue or monetary penalties under section 1592 of this title, the Customs Service shall treat the overpayments or over-declarations on finally liquidated entries as an offset to any underpayments or underdeclarations also identified on finally liquidated entries, if such overpayments or over-declarations were not made by the person being audited for the purpose of violating any provision of law.

(B) Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to authorize a refund not otherwise authorized under section 1520 of this title.

(c) Service of summons

A summons issued pursuant to this section may be served by any person designated in the summons to serve it. Service upon a natural person may be made by personal delivery of the summons to him. Service may be made upon a domestic or foreign corporation or upon a partnership or other unincorporated association which is subject to suit under a common name, by delivering the summons to an officer, or managing or general agent, or to any other agent authorized by appointment or by law to receive service of process. The certificate of service signed by the person serving the summons is prima facie evidence of the facts it states on the hearing of an application for the enforcement of the summons. When the summons requires the production of records, such records shall be described in the summons with reasonable specificity.

(d) Special procedures for third-party summonses

(1) For purposes of this subsection—

(A) The term “records” includes those—

(i) required to be kept under section 1508 of this title; or

(ii) regarding which there is probable cause to believe that they pertain to merchandise the importation of which into the United States is prohibited.

(B) The term “summons” means any summons issued under subsection (a) of this section which requires the production of records or the giving of testimony relating to records. Such term does not mean any summons issued to aid in the collection of the liability of any person against whom an assessment has been made or judgment rendered.

(C) The term “third-party recordkeeper” means—

(i) any customhouse broker, unless such customhouse broker is the importer of record on an entry;

(ii) any attorney; and

(iii) any accountant.

(2) If—

(A) any summons is served on any person who is a third-party recordkeeper; and

(B) the summons requires the production of, or the giving of testimony relating to, any portion of records made or kept of the transactions described in section 1508 of this title of any person (other than the person summoned) who is identified in the description of the records contained in such summons;

then notice of such summons shall be given to any persons so identified within a reasonable time before the day fixed in the summons as the day upon which such records are to be examined or testimony given. Such notice shall be accompanied by a copy of the summons which has been served and shall contain directions for staying compliance with the summons under paragraph (5)(B) of this subsection.

(3) Any notice required under paragraph (2) of this subsection shall be sufficient if such notice is served in the manner provided in subsection (b) of this section upon the person entitled to notice, or is mailed by certified or registered mail to the last known address of such person.

(4) Paragraph (2) of this subsection shall not apply to any summons—

(A) served on the person with respect to whose liability for duties, fees, or taxes the summons is issued, or any officer or employee of such person; or

(B) to determine whether or not records of the transactions described in section 1508 of this title of an identified person have been made or kept.

(5) Notwithstanding any other law or rule of law, any person who is entitled to notice of a summons under paragraph (2) of this subsection shall have the right—

(A) to intervene in any proceeding with respect to the enforcement of such summons under section 1510 of this title; and

(B) to stay compliance with the summons if, not later than the day before the day fixed in the summons as the day upon which the records are to be examined or testimony given—

(i) notice in writing is given to the person summoned not to comply with the summons; and

(ii) a copy of such notice not to comply with the summons is mailed by registered or certified mail to such person and to such office as the Secretary may direct in the notice referred to in paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(6) No examination of any records required to be produced under a summons as to which notice is required under paragraph (2) of this subsection may be made—

(A) before the expiration of the period allowed for the notice not to comply under paragraph (5)(B) of this subsection, or

(B) if the requirements of such paragraph (5)(B) have been met, except in accordance with an order issued by a court of competent jurisdiction authorizing examination of such records or with the consent of the person staying compliance.

(7) The provisions of paragraphs (2) and (5) of this subsection shall not apply with respect to any summons if, upon petition by the Secretary, the court determines, on the basis of the facts and circumstances alleged, that there is reasonable cause to believe the giving of notice may lead to attempts to conceal, destroy, or alter records relevant to the examination, to prevent the communication of information from other persons through intimidation, bribery, or collusion, or to flee to avoid prosecution, testifying, or production of records.

(e) List of records and information

The Customs Service shall identify and publish a list of the records or entry information that is required to be maintained and produced under subsection (a)(1)(A) of this section.

(f) Recordkeeping compliance program

(1) In general

After consultation with the importing community, the Customs Service shall by regulation establish a recordkeeping compliance program which the parties listed in section 1508(a) of this title may participate in after being certified by the Customs Service under paragraph (2). Participation in the recordkeeping compliance program by recordkeepers is voluntary.

(2) Certification

A recordkeeper may be certified as a participant in the recordkeeping compliance program after meeting the general recordkeeping requirements established under the program or after negotiating an alternative program suited to the needs of the recordkeeper and the Customs Service. Certification requirements shall take into account the size and nature of the importing business and the volume of imports. In order to be certified, the recordkeeper must be able to demonstrate that it—

(A) understands the legal requirements for recordkeeping, including the nature of the records required to be maintained and produced and the time periods involved;

(B) has in place procedures to explain the recordkeeping requirements to those employees who are involved in the preparation, maintenance, and production of required records;

(C) has in place procedures regarding the preparation and maintenance of required records, and the production of such records to the Customs Service;

(D) has designated a dependable individual or individuals to be responsible for recordkeeping compliance under the program and whose duties include maintaining familiarity with the recordkeeping requirements of the Customs Service;

(E) has a record maintenance procedure approved by the Customs Service for original records, or, if approved by the Customs Service, for alternative records or recordkeeping formats other than the original records; and

(F) has procedures for notifying the Customs Service of occurrences of variances to, and violations of, the requirements of the recordkeeping compliance program or the negotiated alternative programs, and for taking corrective action when notified by the Customs Service of violations or problems regarding such program.

(g) Penalties

(1) “Information” defined

For purposes of this subsection, the term “information” means any record, statement, declaration, document, or electronically stored or transmitted information or data referred to in subsection (a)(1)(A) of this section.

(2) Effects of failure to comply with demand

Except as provided in paragraph (4), if a person fails to comply with a lawful demand for information under subsection (a)(1)(A) of this section the following provisions apply:

(A) If the failure to comply is a result of the willful failure of the person to maintain, store, or retrieve the demanded information, such person shall be subject to a penalty, for each release of merchandise, not to exceed $100,000, or an amount equal to 75 percent of the appraised value of the merchandise, whichever amount is less.

(B) If the failure to comply is a result of the negligence of the person in maintaining, storing, or retrieving the demanded information, such person shall be subject to a penalty, for each release of merchandise, not to exceed $10,000, or an amount equal to 40 percent of the appraised value of the merchandise, whichever amount is less.

(C) In addition to any penalty imposed under subparagraph (A) or (B) regarding demanded information, if such information related to the eligibility of merchandise for a column 1 special rate of duty under title I, the entry of such merchandise—

(i) if unliquidated, shall be liquidated at the applicable column 1 general rate of duty; or

(ii) if liquidated within the 2-year period preceding the date of the demand, shall be reliquidated, notwithstanding the time limitation in section 1514 or 1520 of this title, at the applicable column 1 general rate of duty;

except that any liquidation or reliquidation under clause (i) or (ii) shall be at the applicable column 2 rate of duty if the Customs Service demonstrates that the merchandise should be dutiable at such rate.

(3) Avoidance of penalty

No penalty may be assessed under this subsection if the person can show—

(A) that the loss of the demanded information was the result of an act of God or other natural casualty or disaster beyond the fault of such person or an agent of the person;

(B) on the basis of other evidence satisfactory to the Customs Service, that the demand was substantially complied with; or

(C) the information demanded was presented to and retained by the Customs Service at the time of entry or submitted in response to an earlier demand.

(4) Penalties not exclusive

Any penalty imposed under this subsection shall be in addition to any other penalty provided by law except for—

(A) a penalty imposed under section 1592 of this title for a material omission of the demanded information, or

(B) disciplinary action taken under section 1641 of this title.

(5) Remission or mitigation

A penalty imposed under this section may be remitted or mitigated under section 1618 of this title.

(6) Customs summons

Nothing in this subsection shall limit or preclude the Customs Service from issuing, or seeking the enforcement of, a customs summons.

(7) Alternatives to penalties

(A) In general

When a recordkeeper who—

(i) has been certified as a participant in the recordkeeping compliance program under subsection (f) of this section; and

(ii) is generally in compliance with the appropriate procedures and requirements of the program;

does not produce a demanded record or information for a specific release or provide the information by acceptable alternative means, the Customs Service, in the absence of willfulness or repeated violations, shall issue a written notice of the violation to the recordkeeper in lieu of a monetary penalty. Repeated violations by the recordkeeper may result in the issuance of penalties and removal of certification under the program until corrective action, satisfactory to the Customs Service, is taken.

(B) Contents of notice

A notice of violation issued under subparagraph (A) shall—

(i) state that the recordkeeper has violated the recordkeeping requirements;

(ii) indicate the record or information which was demanded; and

(iii) warn the recordkeeper that future failures to produce demanded records or information may result in the imposition of monetary penalties.

(C) Response to notice

Within a reasonable time after receiving written notice under subparagraph (A), the recordkeeper shall notify the Customs Service of the steps it has taken to prevent a recurrence of the violation.

(D) Regulations

The Secretary shall promulgate regulations to implement this paragraph. Such regulations may specify the time periods for compliance with a demand for information and provide guidelines which define repeated violations for purposes of this paragraph. Any penalty issued for a recordkeeping violation shall take into account the degree of compliance compared to the total number of importations, the nature of the demanded records and the recordkeeper's cooperation.

 

§1510. Judicial enforcement

(a) Order of court

If any person summoned under section 1509 of this title does not comply with the summons, the district court of the United States for any district in which such person is found or resides or is doing business, upon application and after notice to any such person and hearing, shall have jurisdiction to issue an order requiring such person to comply with the summons. Failure to obey such order of the court may be punished by such court as a contempt thereof and such court may assess a monetary penalty.

(b) Sanctions

(1) For so long as any person, after being adjudged guilty of contempt for neglecting or refusing to obey a lawful summons issued under section 1509 of this title and for refusing to obey the order of the court, remains in contempt, the Secretary may—

(A) prohibit that person from importing merchandise into the customs territory of the United States directly or indirectly or for his account, and

(B) instruct the appropriate customs officers to withhold delivery of merchandise imported directly or indirectly by that person or for his account.

(2) If any person remains in contempt for more than one year after the date on which the Secretary issues instructions under paragraph (1)(B) with respect to that person, the appropriate customs officers shall cause all merchandise held in customs custody pursuant to such instructions to be sold at public auction or otherwise disposed of under the customs laws.

(3) The sanctions which may be imposed under paragraphs (1) and (2) are in addition to any punishment which may be imposed by the court for contempt.

 

§1511. Repealed. Pub. L. 95–410, title I, §107, Oct. 3, 1978, 92 Stat. 892

 

§1512. Deposit of duty receipts

All moneys paid to any customs officer for unascertained duties or for duties paid under protest against the rate or amount of duties charged shall be deposited to the credit of the Treasurer of the United States and shall not be held by the customs officers to await any ascertainment of duties or the result of any litigation in relation to the rate or amount of duties legally chargeable and collectible in any case where money is so paid.

 

§1513. Customs officer's immunity

No customs officer shall be liable in any way to any person for or on account of—

(1) any ruling or decision regarding the appraisement or the classification of any imported merchandise or regarding the duties, fees, and taxes charged thereon,

(2) the collection of any dues, charges, duties, fees, and taxes on or on account of any imported merchandise, or

(3) any other matter or thing as to which any person might under this chapter be entitled to protest or appeal from the decision of such officer.

 

§1514. Protest against decisions of Customs Service

(a) Finality of decisions; return of papers

Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, section 1501 of this title (relating to voluntary reliquidations), section 1516 of this title (relating to petitions by domestic interested parties), section 1520 of this title (relating to refunds), and section 6501 of title 26 (but only with respect to taxes imposed under chapters 51 and 52 of such title), any clerical error, mistake of fact, or other inadvertence, whether or not resulting from or contained in an electronic transmission, adverse to the importer, in any entry, liquidation, or reliquidation, and, decisions of the Customs Service, including the legality of all orders and findings entering into the same, as to—

(1) the appraised value of merchandise;

(2) the classification and rate and amount of duties chargeable;

(3) all charges or exactions of whatever character within the jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Treasury;

(4) the exclusion of merchandise from entry or delivery or a demand for redelivery to customs custody under any provision of the customs laws, except a determination appealable under section 1337 of this title;

(5) the liquidation or reliquidation of an entry, or reconciliation as to the issues contained therein, or any modification thereof, including the liquidation of an entry, pursuant to either section 1500 of this title or section 1504 of this title;

(6) the refusal to pay a claim for drawback; or

(7) the refusal to reliquidate an entry under subsection (d) of section 1520 of this title;

shall be final and conclusive upon all persons (including the United States and any officer thereof) unless a protest is filed in accordance with this section, or unless a civil action contesting the denial of a protest, in whole or in part, is commenced in the United States Court of International Trade in accordance with chapter 169 of title 28 within the time prescribed by section 2636 of that title. When a judgment or order of the United States Court of International Trade has become final, the papers transmitted shall be returned, together with a copy of the judgment or order to the Customs Service, which shall take action accordingly.

(b) Finality of determinations

With respect to determinations made under section 1303 1 of this title or subtitle IV of this chapter which are reviewable under section 1516a of this title, determinations of the Customs Service are final and conclusive upon all persons (including the United States and any officer thereof) unless a civil action contesting a determination listed in section 1516a of this title is commenced in the United States Court of International Trade, or review by a binational panel of a determination to which section 1516a(g)(2) of this title applies is commenced pursuant to section 1516a(g) of this title and article 1904 of the North American Free Trade Agreement or the United States-Canada Free-Trade Agreement.

(c) Form, number, and amendment of protest; filing of protest

(1) A protest of a decision made under subsection (a) of this section shall be filed in writing, or transmitted electronically pursuant to an electronic data interchange system, in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary. A protest must set forth distinctly and specifically—

(A) each decision described in subsection (a) of this section as to which protest is made;

(B) each category of merchandise affected by each decision set forth under paragraph (1);

(C) the nature of each objection and the reasons therefor; and

(D) any other matter required by the Secretary by regulation.

Only one protest may be filed for each entry of merchandise, except that where the entry covers merchandise of different categories, a separate protest may be filed for each category. In addition, separate protests filed by different authorized persons with respect to any one category of merchandise, or with respect to a determination of origin under section 3332 of this title, that is the subject of a protest are deemed to be part of a single protest. Unless a request for accelerated disposition is filed under section 1515(b) of this title, a protest may be amended, under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, to set forth objections as to a decision or decisions described in subsection (a) of this section which were not the subject of the original protest, in the form and manner prescribed for a protest, any time prior to the expiration of the time in which such protest could have been filed under this section. New grounds in support of objections raised by a valid protest or amendment thereto may be presented for consideration in connection with the review of such protest pursuant to section 1515 of this title at any time prior to the disposition of the protest in accordance with that section.

(2) Except as provided in sections 1485(d) and 1557(b) of this title, protests may be filed with respect to merchandise which is the subject of a decision specified in subsection (a) of this section by—

(A) the importers or consignees shown on the entry papers, or their sureties;

(B) any person paying any charge or exaction;

(C) any person seeking entry or delivery;

(D) any person filing a claim for drawback;

(E) with respect to a determination of origin under section 3332 of this title, any exporter or producer of the merchandise subject to that determination, if the exporter or producer completed and signed a NAFTA Certificate of Origin covering the merchandise; or

(F) any authorized agent of any of the persons described in clauses (A) through (E).

(3) A protest of a decision, order, or finding described in subsection (a) of this section shall be filed with the Customs Service within 180 days after but not before—

(A) date of liquidation or reliquidation, or

(B) in circumstances where subparagraph (A) is inapplicable, the date of the decision as to which protest is made.

A protest by a surety which has an unsatisfied legal claim under its bond may be filed within 180 days from the date of mailing of notice of demand for payment against its bond. If another party has not filed a timely protest, the surety's protest shall certify that it is not being filed collusively to extend another authorized person's time to protest as specified in this subsection.

(d) Limitation on protest of reliquidation

The reliquidation of an entry shall not open such entry so that a protest may be filed against the decision of the Customs Service upon any question not involved in such reliquidation.

(e) Advance notice of certain determinations

Except as provided in subsection (f) of this section, an exporter or producer referred to in subsection (c)(2)(E) of this section shall be provided notice in advance of an adverse determination of origin under section 3332 of this title. The Secretary may, by regulations, prescribe the time period in which such advance notice shall be issued and authorize the Customs Service to provide in the notice the entry number and any other entry information considered necessary to allow the exporter or producer to exercise the rights provided by this section.

(f) Denial of preferential treatment

If the Customs Service finds indications of a pattern of conduct by an exporter or producer of false or unsupported representations that goods qualify under the rules of origin set out in section 3332 of this title—

(1) the Customs Service, in accordance with regulations issued by the Secretary, may deny preferential tariff treatment to entries of identical goods exported or produced by that person; and

(2) the advance notice requirement in subsection (e) of this section shall not apply to that person;

until the person establishes to the satisfaction of the Customs Service that its representations are in conformity with section 3332 of this title.

(g) Denial of preferential tariff treatment under United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement

If the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection or the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement finds indications of a pattern of conduct by an importer of false or unsupported representations that goods qualify under the rules of origin set out in section 202 of the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection, in accordance with regulations issued by the Secretary of the Treasury, may deny preferential tariff treatment under the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement to entries of identical goods imported by that person until the person establishes to the satisfaction of the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection that representations of that person are in conformity with such section 202.

(h) Denial of preferential tariff treatment under the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement

If the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection or the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement finds indications of a pattern of conduct by an importer, exporter, or producer of false or unsupported representations that goods qualify under the rules of origin set out in section 4033 of this title, the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection, in accordance with regulations issued by the Secretary of the Treasury, may suspend preferential tariff treatment under the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement to entries of identical goods covered by subsequent representations by that importer, exporter, or producer until the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection determines that representations of that person are in conformity with such section 4033 of this title.

(i) Denial of preferential tariff treatment under the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement

If U.S. Customs and Border Protection or U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement of the Department of Homeland Security finds indications of a pattern of conduct by an importer, exporter, or producer of false or unsupported representations that goods qualify under the rules of origin provided for in section 203 of the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, in accordance with regulations issued by the Secretary of the Treasury, may suspend preferential tariff treatment under the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement to entries of identical goods covered by subsequent representations by that importer, exporter, or producer until U.S. Customs and Border Protection determines that representations of that person are in conformity with such section 203.

 

§1515. Review of protests

(a) Administrative review and modification of decisions

Unless a request for an accelerated disposition of a protest is filed in accordance with subsection (b) of this section the appropriate customs officer, within two years from the date a protest was filed in accordance with section 1514 of this title, shall review the protest and shall allow or deny such protest in whole or in part. Thereafter, any duties, charge, or exaction found to have been assessed or collected in excess shall be remitted or refunded and any drawback found due shall be paid. Upon the request of the protesting party, filed within the time allowed for the filing of a protest under section 1514 of this title, a protest may be subject to further review by another appropriate customs officer, under the circumstances and in the form and manner that may be prescribed by the Secretary in regulations, but subject to the two-year limitation prescribed in the first sentence of this subsection. Within 30 days from the date an application for further review is filed, the appropriate customs officer shall allow or deny the application and, if allowed, the protest shall be forwarded to the customs officer who will be conducting the further review. Notice of the denial of any protest shall be mailed in the form and manner prescribed by the Secretary. Such notice shall include a statement of the reasons for the denial, as well as a statement informing the protesting party of his right to file a civil action contesting the denial of a protest under section 1514 of this title.

(b) Request for accelerated disposition of protest

A request for accelerated disposition of a protest filed in accordance with section 1514 of this title may be mailed by certified or registered mail to the appropriate customs officer any time concurrent with or following the filing of such protest. For purposes of section 1581 of title 28, a protest which has not been allowed or denied in whole or in part within thirty days following the date of mailing by certified or registered mail of a request for accelerated disposition shall be deemed denied on the thirtieth day following mailing of such request.

(c) Request for set aside of denial of further review

If a protesting party believes that an application for further review was erroneously or improperly denied or was denied without authority for such action, it may file with the Commissioner of Customs a written request that the denial of the application for further review be set aside. Such request must be filed within 60 days after the date of the notice of the denial. The Commissioner of Customs may review such request and, based solely on the information before the Customs Service at the time the application for further review was denied, may set aside the denial of the application for further review and void the denial of protest, if appropriate. If the Commissioner of Customs fails to act within 60 days after the date of the request, the request shall be considered denied. All denials of protests are effective from the date of original denial for purposes of section 2636 of title 28. If an action is commenced in the Court of International Trade that arises out of a protest or an application for further review, all administrative action pertaining to such protest or application shall terminate and any administrative action taken subsequent to the commencement of the action is null and void.

(d) Voiding denial of protest

If a protest is timely and properly filed, but is denied contrary to proper instructions, the Customs Service may on its own initiative, or pursuant to a written request by the protesting party filed with the appropriate port director within 90 days after the date of the protest denial, void the denial of the protest.

 

§1516. Petitions by domestic interested parties

(a) Request for classification and rate of duty; petition

(1) The Secretary shall, upon written request by an interested party furnish the classification and the rate of duty imposed upon designated imported merchandise of a class or kind manufactured, produced, or sold at wholesale by such interested party. If the interested party believes that the appraised value, the classification, or rate of duty is not correct, it may file a petition with the Secretary setting forth—

(A) a description of the merchandise,

(B) the appraised value, the classification, or the rate of duty that it believes proper, and

(C) the reasons for its belief.

(2) As used in this section, the term “interested party” means a person who is—

(A) a manufacturer, producer, or wholesaler in the United States;

(B) a certified union or recognized union or group of workers which is representative of an industry engaged in the manufacture, production, or wholesale in the United States; or

(C) a trade or business association a majority of whose members are manufacturers, producers, or wholesalers in the United States,

of goods of the same class or kind as the designated imported merchandise. Such term includes an association, a majority of whose members is composed of persons described in subparagraph (A), (B), or (C).

(3) Any producer of a raw agricultural product who is considered under section 1677(4)(E) of this title to be part of the industry producing a processed agricultural product of the same class or kind as the designated imported merchandise shall, for purposes of this section, be treated as an interested party producing such processed agricultural product.

(b) Determination on petition

If, after receipt and consideration of a petition filed by such an interested party, the Secretary determines that the appraised value, the classification, or rate of duty is not correct, he shall determine the proper appraised value, classification, or rate of duty and shall notify the petitioner of his determination. All such merchandise entered for consumption or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption more than thirty days after the date such notice to the petitioner is published in the weekly Customs Bulletin shall be appraised, classified, or assessed as to the rate of duty in accordance with the Secretary's determination.

(c) Contest by petitioner of appraised value, classification, or rate of duty

If the Secretary determines that the appraised value, classification, or rate of duty with respect to which a petition was filed pursuant to subsection (a) of this section is correct, he shall notify the petitioner. If dissatisfied with the determination of the Secretary, the petitioner may file with the Secretary, not later than thirty days after the date of the notification, notice that it desires to contest the appraised value, classification, or rate of duty. Upon receipt of notice from the petitioner, the Secretary shall cause publication to be made of his determination as to the proper appraised value, classification, or rate of duty and of the petitioner's desire to contest, and shall thereafter furnish the petitioner with such information as to the entries and consignees of such merchandise, entered after the publication of the determination of the Secretary, at such ports of entry designated by the petitioner in his notice of desire to contest, as will enable the petitioner to contest the appraised value, classification, or rate of duty imposed upon such merchandise in the liquidation of one such entry at such port. The Secretary shall direct the appropriate customs officer at such ports to immediately notify the petitioner by mail when the first of such entries is liquidated.

(d) Appraisal, classification, and liquidation of entries of merchandise covered by published decisions of Secretary

Notwithstanding the filing of an action pursuant to chapter 169 of title 28, merchandise of the character covered by the published decision of the Secretary (when entered for consumption or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption on or before the date of publication of a decision of the United States Court of International Trade or of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, not in harmony with the published decision of the Secretary) shall be appraised or classified, or both, and the entries liquidated, in accordance with the decision of the Secretary and, except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the final liquidations of these entries shall be conclusive upon all parties.

(e) Consignee or his agent as party in interest before the Court of International Trade

The consignee or his agent shall have the right to appear and to be heard as a party in interest before the United States Court of International Trade.

(f) Appraisement, classification, and assessment of duty of merchandise covered by published decision of Secretary in accordance with final judicial decision of Court of International Trade or Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit sustaining cause of action in whole or in part; suspension of liquidation of entries; publication

If the cause of action is sustained in whole or in part by a decision of the United States Court of International Trade or of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, merchandise of the character covered by the published decision of the Secretary, which is entered for consumption or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption after the date of publication in the Federal Register by the Secretary or the administering authority of a notice of the court decision, shall be subject to appraisement, classification, and assessment of duty in accordance with the final judicial decision in the action, and the liquidation of entries covering the merchandise so entered or withdrawn shall be suspended until final disposition is made of the action, whereupon the entries shall be liquidated, or if necessary, reliquidated in accordance with the final decision. Such notice of the court decision shall be published within ten days from the date of the issuance of the court decision.

(g) Regulations implementing required procedures

Regulations shall be prescribed by the Secretary to implement the procedures required under this section.

[...]

§1520. Refunds and errors

(a) Cases in which refunds authorized

The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to refund duties or other receipts in the following cases:

(1) Excess deposits.—Whenever it is ascertained on liquidation or reliquidation of an entry or reconciliation that more money has been deposited or paid as duties than was required by law to be so deposited or paid.

(2) Fees, charges, and exactions.—Whenever it is determined in the manner required by law that any fees, charges, or exactions, other than duties and taxes, have been erroneously or excessively collected.

(3) Fines, penalties, and forfeitures.—Whenever money has been deposited in the Treasury on account of a fine, penalty, or forfeiture which did not accrue, or which is finally determined to have accrued in an amount less than that so deposited, or which is mitigated to an amount less than that so deposited or is remitted.

(4) Prior to liquidation.—Prior to the liquidation of an entry or reconciliation, whenever an importer of record declares or it is ascertained that excess duties, fees, charges, or exactions have been deposited or paid.

(b) Authorization of appropriations

The necessary moneys to make such refunds are authorized to be appropriated annually from the general fund of the Treasury.

(c) Repealed. Pub. L. 108–429, title II, §2105, Dec. 3, 2004, 118 Stat. 2598

(d) Goods qualifying under free trade agreement rules of origin

Notwithstanding the fact that a valid protest was not filed, the Customs Service may, in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary, reliquidate an entry to refund any excess duties (including any merchandise processing fees) paid on a good qualifying under the rules of origin set out in section 3332 of this title, section 202 of the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, section 4033 of this title, section 202 of the United States-Oman Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, or section 203 of the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act for which no claim for preferential tariff treatment was made at the time of importation if the importer, within 1 year after the date of importation, files, in accordance with those regulations, a claim that includes—

(1) a written declaration that the good qualified under the applicable rules at the time of importation;

(2) copies of all applicable NAFTA Certificates of Origin (as defined in section 1508(b)(1) of this title), or other certificates or certifications of origin, as the case may be; and

(3) such other documentation and information relating to the importation of the goods as the Customs Service may require.