Successful Exporting - United States

1. Customs Documentation Requirements 
As a company selling to the US, in most cases, you are considered the exporter of the goods. It is the exporter's responsibility to complete and provide the required documents to the carrier when sending goods to the US. 

When exporting the key document for customs purposes is the US Customs Invoice. A US Customs Invoice or Commercial Invoice is the prime document required for all shipments to the US.

You need a NAFTA Certificate of Origin for all shipments that qualify under the NAFTA Rules of Origin. Qualifying goods with a valid certificate of origin may enter the country duty free. 

Additional Documentation (that may be required) 
Depending on the carrier selected a Bill of Landing may also be required. The carrier supplies this document.

Packing List 
Forms required by other government agencies 

Radiation articles: A Radiation Declaration Form FD2877 is required. 

Food: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) strictly monitor food items for consumption by humans or animals. The FDA requires that you have a US agent acting on your behalf, and that you or your US broker send prior notification to the FDA before shipping the goods. 

Clothing and textiles: Check the appropriate quota for these. A completed textile declaration is required. 

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) articles: a completed FCC form 740 is required. 
Some goods may be prohibited. The prohibited goods list will detail these items.

2. Customs Compliance 
Exporters play an important role in ensuring their US customers maintain a good compliance record. This means faster release times and avoiding needless import penalties. Completing your export documentation accurately creates goodwill towards your customers.

It is essential to have fully completed and accurate certificates on file to ensure compliance with US Customs regulations. Invalid NAFTA certificates of origin are one of the largest areas of concern for non-compliance. To claim the duty free status, a valid certificate must be on file.

"The importer is responsible for having a fully completed and valid NAFTA certificate on file for any goods claiming the duty free rate of duty under NAFTA. Exporters, producers or manufacturers are responsible for determining qualification under NAFTA and completing an accurate certificate. Only importers who possess a valid NAFTA certificate of origin can claim preferred tariff treatment."

3. Working with a Customs Broker
Consulting with a professional US customs broker ensures that you are compliant with customs regulations and accurately determines if your product qualifies under NAFTA. 

Establish an account with a US Customs Broker
Depending on the terms detailed in the purchase agreement with the US purchaser, the seller would be responsible for the export of goods and, in many cases, is also responsible for the import process. Please note that it is the importer's responsibility to arrange for the commercial import process and account for applicable duty and/or taxes while ensuring compliance with customs regulations. 

A licensed US customs broker partners with you to act on your behalf, carrying out customs-related responsibilities. This ensures the compliance and quick release of your product through US Customs. 

Establish an account with MCH "Merchants Custom House Brokerage Co. Inc.", by requesting a free customs quote.

For further help or information on how MCH Brokerage can help you successfully manage your import requirements, contact us at [email protected] or request a free quote.

US Export

US Exporting Clearance ​