Seasoned importers are well versed in the requirements of the Customs form 7501, but for those dipping their toes into the complicated world of importing into the U.S., understanding and familiarizing themselves with these requirements is essential. In short, importers answer to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) – the federal law enforcement agency of the U.S. to ensure a smooth release of their goods from customs. Here is a springboard to acquaint yourself with Customs Form 7501.
What is the link between Form 7501 & customs clearance?
The Customs Form 7501 – also known as the Entry Summary, states that every shipment entering the U.S. must pass the customs clearance process, and to do so, must file the Entry Summary. However, many importers are still unsure what Form 7501 entails or why it is so essential in the first place. The government did not dream it up to be a stumbling block for importers, but as a critical CBP tool to:
- Safeguard, and boost the country’s profits by assessing imported merchandise and then collecting duties, taxes, and fees.
- Determine all pertinent information regarding the imported commodity, including classification, appraisement, origin, and more.
- Protect the U.S. from illegal arms trafficking, fraud, copyright infringements, illegal substances like Rohypnol and absinthe, and more (complete list accessible on CBP website).
Who Handles the Form?
Importers can hire a customs broker to handle customs clearance. Their job is to pay shipment fees, prepare and submit import documents to the CBP office, and ensure the release of goods from customs. However, in the age of digitalization, importers are saving time and costs by exploring options to avoid using intermediaries by becoming self-filers.
What Does Form 7501 Entail?
The CBP form 7501 is probably the most important document to file. Besides the reasons above for having the document in place, it helps the CBP decide if the importer has met all legal requirements.
Note that certain products, such as food and drugs, may need special permits from the relevant national agencies (e.g., the FDA). Your local commercial customs office will be able to advise you.
This Form 7501 must accurately describe the package’s contents, quantity, weight, buying price, and country of origin. Here are the first few sections to be filled out on the Form:
- Block 1 – Entry Number
Filer fills in an 11-digit number on the entry and corresponding Entry Summary. The format is ‘XXX-NNNNNNN-N’: ‘XXX’ is an entry filer code assigned by CBP; ‘NNNNNNN’ is the unique number assigned by the broker/importer, and ‘N’ is a check digit computed from the first ten characters based on a formula provided by CBP.
- Block 2 – Entry Type
A two-digit code indicating the type of entry being filed. The first digit identifies the general category, while the second determines the entry type within that category.
- Block 5 – Bond Type
A compulsory 1-digit code that records the bond type being used for the entry:
- 0 – U.S. Government or entry types not requiring a bond
- 8 – Continuous Customs Bond
- 9 – Single Transaction Bond
- Block 7 – Entry Date
Generally, the date goods are released from CBP custody. Date format: MM/DD/YYYY.
- Block 10 – Country of Origin
An item’s country of production, manufacture, or growth. If the product comprises material manufactured in various countries, its origin will be where it last underwent a significant alteration.
- Block 23 – Importer Number
Importer’s unique identifying code used by CBP for importing purposes.
DIY 7501 filing
Becoming a self-filer is a particularly beneficial solution, especially for SMBs. By filing your own Customs Form 7501, you can easily navigate the system and save costs. By doing so, you will increase profits and enhance your competitive edge.
eezyimport offers a DIY Self Entry (7501) online platform that enables exactly this. Within minutes, the eezyflow™ system guides importers through the process. Besides time, resources, and cost-saving, you have complete autonomy and visibility and can access the system anytime, anywhere (phone, desktop, tablet). If you need help with our DIY Broker Entry (7501) solution, a broker will review your entry and ensure you are aligned with all regulations and ready to file.
Our company aims to empower importers with pioneering solutions that remove obstacles and ensure growth and success!
Get in touch with eezyimport today, and let us discuss your success!