U.S. Customs and Border Protection has announced that on April 1 it began advising entry filers when their shipments have vague noncompliant cargo descriptions.

CBP regulations require a precise, or specific, description of the merchandise being imported. Carriers and other parties electing to file electronic cargo information data must provide a precise description of the cargo. Brokers and freight forwarders who self-file house bills are held to the same standard as carriers and are expected to screen data for compliance with cargo declaration regulations. Entry filers are expected to review cargo messages for compliance when concerns are identified. 

However, CBP is concerned that it continues to receive vague cargo descriptions like “gift,” “daily necessities,” “accessories,” “parts,” and “consolidated” (which is only acceptable at the master bill level).

In response, CBP is sending messages that in most cases will be sent via ACE Cargo Release after release of the cargo. Brokers and importers are expected to process these messages and work to correct the issue with the shipper and bill of lading issuer for compliance on future shipments.

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