For the longest time, Import/Export has been intimately attached with documentation. A business looking to import goods into the US must be prepared with the sudden requirement of documentation and paperwork, from widely known forms to the most unknown papers. Here are some of the major documents to keep track of when importing goods:
- Importer Security Filing (ISF)
The Importer Security Filing (ISF), also known as the 10+2 filing, is essential to the functions of US Customs. This is a critical and mandated document that details everything about the cargo being shipped. These details help the authorities understand if the product is safe to be imported. Timely submission of the ISF helps in quick clearance.
- Commercial Invoice
This invoice outlines details of the import process, from the description of goods and unit prices to total value and terms of sale. Here, accuracy is valued above all as this data is used to calculate duties and taxes.
- Bill of Lading
The Bill of Lading (BOL) is a crucial document that serves as a receipt of goods, a contract of carriage, and a document of title. It outlines the details of the shipment, including the type and quantity of goods, their destination, and the terms of transportation. For ocean shipments, the Bill of Lading is a vital document, having the power to decide if your goods are released at the destination port or not.
- Permits / PGAs Upon Request
Certain goods may require specific permits or be subject to Partner Government Agency (PGA) regulations. These permits are crucial for compliance with regulatory authorities and may include certificates, licenses, or approvals.
Import/Export requires expertise, patience, and an eye for detail. In this regard, following the Clearit USA customs compliance guide can help you navigate this process with ease!
In each area, an online customs broker can help your business figure out and understand the required documentations. This involves determining what documents are actually required, preparing them, and editing according to any regulatory changes. The best part – online customs broker have a digital solution to documentation. With the use of e-sign technology, the document can be submitted to the authorities on your behalf with the touch of a button!
Import/Export is intricate, but that doesn’t mean it has to be restrictive! Partner with an online customs broker and help your business scale new heights today.