n occasion, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) may require additional information on goods after they are imported and accounted for. After all, the Agency’s primary role is to ensure businesses are compliant with Canada’s import rules and regulations.
If you have imported your goods and paid the duties owing, you may still receive a notification from CBSA – anywhere from 90 days onwards – requesting additional information about your shipment. We understand that it can be a confusing moment for you.
This article will provide an overview of the two main types of requests for information you may receive from CBSA, why you may have received the request, and what you need to do when you receive it.
Why CBSA requests additional information
CBSA requests information to review, confirm, and/or verify import information on goods previously accounted for. There are various circumstances under which CBSA may contact importers or their customs broker(s) to request information about the imported goods.
Examples of requests can include but are not limited to valuation, tariff classification, Free Trade Agreements, anti-dump and countervailing subjectivity, and amendments to supporting documentation.
Types of Requests for Information
There are 2 main types of requests for information: email requests for information and trade verification audit letters. Let us go through them briefly.
Email Requests for Information
Email requests for information are usually sent to the customs broker directly and include the importer where possible. The most common email Requests for Information are related to Anti-Dumping and Countervailing (AD/CV) Duties.
Although your shipment may not be subject to AD/CV Duties, the goods may be classified under the same tariff classification as goods that are subject to these duties. CBSA may request additional information to review these goods and ensure that all duties are assessed correctly and paid.
From time to time, a Request for Information may come from other government departments or agencies such as the Canadian Food Inspection Agency or Health Canada. These requests are usually specific to one shipment, requesting missing or further information.
Trade Verification Audit Letters
You might also receive a request for a Trade Verification Audit Letter from CBSA. A request for a trade verification audit is communicated via a Notification Letter that is sent to the importer only.
Trade verifications are completed on Free Trade Agreements/Origin, tariff classification, valuation, and drawback.
What to Do When you Receive a Request for Information via Email
There are 3 main steps in the process for this form of Request for Information.
- Step 1: Ensure you understand what is being requested of you and note when the information is due to the requestor.
- Step 2: Gather the information required or contact your customs broker to work together on compiling it.
- Step 3: Share the requested information with CBSA directly or through your customs broker.
What to Do When you Receive a Request for Information via a Letter?
There are 6 main steps in the process for this form of Request for Information.
Whether you receive a Request for Information email or Trade Verification Audit letter, the Global Trade Services (GTS) team at GHY can help you avoid getting caught up in the paperwork and red tape that usually surround these situations.