Customs bond

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How to Get a Customs Bond

Customs bonds

Customs bonds are a requirement when importing items into the country. The federal government has strict rules and regulations in place to carefully monitor and track everything that comes into the U.S. With that in mind, if you will be importing goods, you will need to secure a customs bond.

The First Step

It is important to understand upfront that the government wont actually provide you a customs bond directly. You have to go through a company called a surety. The surety has to be licensed by the Treasury department. This is essential to understand because you cant get a valid bond anywhere else, and you could face potential issues if you try to use a nonvalid bond.

Securing the Bond

Once you know where to get a bond, you will then have to follow whatever process the company has designed for obtaining a bond. Typically, this will include completing an application that will provide your company information and information about what you are importing. Many times, you will need to grant power of attorney to the company so it can file the bond for you. There will also be fees involved, which include taxes.

Once you have a valid customs bond, you can then begin importing your goods. It is important to remember that you cannot import without a bond, so you will have to make sure you go through the process to secure a legally valid bond.

What Is a Customs Bond

Customs bond

A customs bond is an agreement that ensures companies adhere to customs procedures and allows Customs and Border Protection to collect fees if the deal is not upheld. These bonds are typically held through insurance and surety companies.

Who’s Involved in a Customs Bond?

There are three parties involved with these agreements:

  • Company issuing the bond
  • Principal (the persons required to file the bond)
  • Customs and Border Protection (CBP)

The principal is responsible for initiating the bond and finding the issuing company. Should the principal not fulfill their obligations, the company will be responsible for covering CBP fees.

Are There Different Kinds of Bonds?

There are a number of bond options available depending on the needs of the situation. Commonly used bonds include:

  • Import bond
  • Drawback bond
  • Custodian bond
  • Intl carrier
  • Foreign trade zone

Many of these are dependent on what kind of transport and shipments you will be bringing into the country.

Customs bonds ensure that if the principal does not pay the appropriate taxes and fees for imports, the CBP can collect what is legally due to them. However, should the principal fail to comply they may be responsible for repaying the bond to the issuing company. Check with your local bond professional to learn more about the process.