There are a number of proven and legitimate ways to avoid or reduce the additional tariffs the U.S. has levied on hundreds of billions of dollars' worth of imported goods. ST&R attorneys have extensive experience implementing the below programs. Contact us for a complimentary consultation to determine if one of the below strategies could reduce your company's duty burden.
TARIFF ENGINEERING / REVIEW
Because U.S. courts have continually affirmed that CBP can only levy tariffs on goods in their condition as imported, importers in a variety of industries where high duties prevail may import products in unfinished or embellished forms to legally take advantage of classification provisions carrying a lower or free rate of duty.
Special HTSUS Chapter 98 provisions may enable importers to partially or fully avoid the additional tariffs on numerous types of products based on article use or condition.
Importers should examine whether certain amounts typically included in the price, such as buying commissions, shipping-related charges, inspection fees, and post-importation assembly changes, can be excluded from dutiable value, thereby reducing the amount of additional tariffs.
The first sale rule allows duty to be based on the sale of goods from the manufacturer to a middleman/vendor in qualifying multi-tiered transactions rather than the sale from the middleman/vendor to the importer. It is a highly effective method for legitimately lowering import tariffs and one that is increasingly utilized to mitigate the impact of Section 201, 232, and 301 tariffs.
Importers may use bonded facilities or specific movements of goods to avoid or delay duty payment,including tariff payment. Depending on the final use of the good, options include temporary importation bonds, bonded warehouses, foreign-trade zones.
Drawback allows for a refund of 99 percent of the duties, taxes and fees paid on goods imported into the United States that are subsequently exported or destroyed.
E-COMMERCE AND SECTION 321 DE MINIMIS
CBP laws and regulations provide for a duty exemption for goods manifested at less than $800 fair retail value in the country of shipment if imported by one person on one day. CBP has confirmed that this exemption does apply for section 301 tariffs.
LEGISLATIVE AND REGULATORY ADVOCACY
Lobbying efforts aimed at Congress or the Administration may mitigate the effects of tariffs. The focus of an effort can be to protect or create benefits in new FTAs, maintain trade preference programs, get a specific tariff suspended, or to promote legislative efforts aimed at targeted tariff reductions.