Classification of imported articles under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) and the determination of the correct value of the imported merchandise are two of the most important compliance issues confronting companies that import goods into the United States. The correct tariff classification may have a significant impact on duties and the eligibility of the product for preferential duty treatment. The value of imported merchandise must include all statutory additions to the value and must account for all payments to the vendor. For intercompany transactions, the value must meet both the IRS’s standards for transfer pricing and CBP’s standards for value. Thompson Coburn regularly works with clients in handling customs rulings, audits and penalties, and in developing documented customs compliance systems.
Security also is an important part of any import compliance operation. Companies must understand their supply chain as well as the requirements of the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism and the World Customs Organization Framework of Standards to Secure and Facilitate Global Trade in order to assure minimal interruptions in their import operations.