Publication Sample

The following is a segment copied directly from Chapter 2 of our material.
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ENTRY : “Entry” refers to the documentation required to be filed with the appropriate Customs officer to secure the release of imported merchandise.

: "Entry Summary" refers to the documentation necessary to enable Customs to assess duties, collect statistics, and determine whether other requirements of law have been met.

SUBMISSION : "Submission" means the voluntary delivery to Customs of entry, entry/summary documentation for preliminary review or entry documentation for any other purpose.


The delivery of entry documentation to Customs in order to obtain the release of
the merchandise.

The delivery to Customs, together with the deposit of estimated duties, of the entry summary and any other documentation required to assess duties, collect statistics, and determine if other requirements of law and regulations are met.

The delivery to Customs, together with the deposit of estimated duties, of the entry summary documentation which shall serve as both the entry and entry summary.

PRESENTATION : "Presentation" is used in connection with quota class merchandise. It is the delivery in proper form to the appropriate Customs office of:

  • An entry summary for consumption, which shall serve as both entry and entry summary with estimated duties attached; or
  • A withdrawal for consumption, with estimated duties attached.

ENTERED FOR CONSUMPTION : "Entered for Consumption" means that a form 7501 entry summary for consumption has been filed with Customs in proper form, with estimated duties attached. This allows the imported merchandise to be sold (consumed) in the United States.


When imported merchandise enters the Customs territory of the United States it is under the control of U.S. Customs. The importer may gain control of the goods only after complying with certain regulations. As a general rule, the entry process has five requirements:

  1. Evidence of Right to Make Entry
  2. Filing of Entry
  3. Filing of Entry Summary
  4. Evidence of Surety (Bond)
  5. Compliance with Other Government Agency (OGA) Regulations


Goods may be entered only by the owner, purchaser, or a licensed Customhouse Broker. The only persons who are authorized by the tariff laws of the United States to act as agents for the importers in the transaction of their Customs business are Customhouse Brokers who are private individuals or firms licensed by the Customs Service. Customs brokers will prepare and file the necessary Customs entries, arrange for the payment of the duties, secure the release of the merchandise in Customs custody, and represent their clients in other Customs related matters.

Every entry must be supported by evidence of right to make entry. Some documents that evidence the right to make entry are:

  • Original bills of lading that are properly endorsed;
  • An extract of the bill of lading certified to be genuine by the carrier; and
  • A carrier's certificate on Customs form CF 7529.
It should be noted that the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended, provides that the "importer of record" has the right to make entry. Again, "importer of record" is defined as the owner, the purchaser or consignee, or a licensed Customhouse Broker. In the situation where a consignee designates a Customs Broker to make entry on his behalf, the broker must be listed as the importer of record (both on the entry and the entry summary) and the broker's bond would, therefore, be liable for subsequent filing of the entry summary and payment of estimated duties. The broker may later transfer any subsequent liability to the owner by filing a superseding bond in the name of the actual owner. This procedure and bonds will be discussed in later chapters.


The actual entry of merchandise is a two-part process consisting of (1) filing the documents necessary to determine whether merchandise may be released from Customs custody, and (2) filing the documents which contain information for duty assessment and statistical purposes. In certain instances, such as the entry of merchandise subject to quotas, all documents must be filed and accepted by Customs prior to the release of the goods.

Within 15 calendar days of the date of arrival of a shipment at a U.S. port of entry, entry documents must be filed at a location specified by the Port Director. These documents consist of:

  • Customs Entry form CF 3461;
  • Evidence of right to make entry;
  • Commercial invoice, or a pro forma invoice when the commercial invoice cannot be produced; and
  • Any other documents and other government agency (OGA) or Customs documents necessary to determine merchandise admissibility.
  • A packing list (for examination purposes).

It is important to remember that the entry must be filed within 15 calendar days. If no entry has been filed within that time, unless the requirement has been extended by the Port Director, the merchandise is then removed to a government warehouse and placed in general order storage (GO). The charges for removal and storage are excessive and provide an incentive to timely filing. General order storage is limited to six (6) months only, and cannot be extended. After one year the merchandise will be destroyed or auctioned.


If the goods are released from Customs custody on entry documents, an entry summary must be filed and estimated duties deposited within 10 working days from the time of entry.

Following presentation of the entry, the shipment may be examined or examination may be waived. The shipment is then released, provided no legal or regulatory violations have occurred. Entry summary documentation is filed and estimated duties are deposited within 10 working days of the release of the merchandise. Entry summary documentation consists of:
  • The previous entry package (CF 3461) used to secure the “release” of
    the merchandise;
  • Entry Summary Customs form CF 7501 with duty payment attached; and
  • Other invoices and documents necessary for the assessment of duties and verification that all import requirements have been met.

The importer has the option to present both the entry and the entry summary simultaneously. This is referred to as filing an entry/entry summary.


The entry must be accompanied by evidence that a bond is posted with Customs to cover any potential duties, taxes, and penalties which may accrue. Bonds may be secured through a U.S. surety company but may also be posted in the form of United States money. In the event a Customs Broker is employed for the purpose of making entry, the broker may permit the use of his bond to provide the required coverage. Bonds will be examined in detail in a later chapter.

Many importers are not aware that an entry is required on every importation, whether the merchandise will be duty free or dutiable, regardless of value, unless exempted specifically by law. We will examine these exceptions in a later chapter.


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