Custom/Duty/HS CodeImport duty and import taxes are far and away one of the most confusing subjects for importers to master. Import duty refers to the tax an importer must pay to the US Government in order to bring foreign products into the commerce of the United States. Import duty can be calculated in a variety of ways, but most import duties are figured as a percentage of the declared value of the commodity. Import duty differs from product to product and is dependent on the commodity being imported, its declared value, its country of origin, and other factors like anti-dumping legislation and quota controls. Import duty values can be as low as zero or as high as 100% (or more) of the product’s declared value.
When is import duty due?Import duty is due for payment when the goods arrive in the United States at a US Customs port with the intent to unload the goods and enter them into the commerce of the United States. Who is responsible for paying the import duty? Paying the import duty is the responsibility of the importer, who is indebted to the Government of the United States for the importation of their goods. Making a payment to a third part (an agent or Customs broker) is not in itself sufficient for repayment. Importers are charged with the responsibility of ensuring that the debt is settled.
How do I pay import duty?Import duty payments can be made in two ways:
- Through a licensed Customs Broker (usually by check or bank draft made out to the broker, or separate checks to US Customs and the broker).
- Or directly via check or bank draft to US Customs.