Posts Tagged ‘Transportation’


 

How ACI eManifest Affects Importers and Carriers

whitetruck_trailer-300Beginning May 1, 2013,  ACI eManifest regulations and requirements for shipments into Canada will be mandatory. There will be no exceptions and any carrier arriving at the border without providing prior eManifest information to CBSA could be subject to Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS) penalties and/or turned around.  Importers – it is very important that you discuss this with your carriers to ensure that they will be compliant and your shipments will not be affected come May 1, 2013.

At Pacific Customs Brokers, we are very aware of how ACI eManifest changes will affect the importing community and as such are taking a proactive approach to ensure our clients and carrier partners are kept up-to-date with the most current information.

Canada Border Services Agency recently outlined four (4) different transportation scenarios that will affect how your goods are imported into Canada. It is very important that you understand how your goods are being carried so that you know which scenario will apply to your importations.

Transportation Scenarios:

Scenario # 1: Carrier picks up at one Shipper and delivers to one Consignee in Canada on one Bill of Lading

  • The CBSA would expect one ACI cargo transmission as per the single contract of carriage or bill of lading.
  • The Carrier is required to submit a single CCN for this scenario.
  • One PARS would be submitted by the importer/broker quoting the single CCN.

For example:

When a carrier picks up 960 cases of bananas and delivers to one location in Vancouver, the carrier is required to provide CBSA with one eManifest cargo transmission, one Cargo Control Number (CCN) and one PARS release package to obtain release of the goods.

Scenario # 2: Carrier picks up from multiple Shippers and delivers to one Consignee in Canada

  • The CBSA would expect multiple ACI cargo transmissions as per the multiple contracts of carriage or bills of lading.
  • The Carrier is required to submit a multiple CCNs for this scenario even though the cargo is consigned to a single consignee.
  • Multiple PARS would be submitted by the importer/broker quoting the multiple CCNs.

For example:

When a carrier has four or five pickups from different shippers being delivered to one location in Vancouver, which results in multiple bills of lading, the carrier is required to provide CBSA with multiple eManifest cargo transmissions and multiple CCNs. In this scenario multiple PARS release packages, based on the number of CCNs submitted by the carrier, would be submitted to CBSA to obtain release of the goods.

Scenario # 3: Carrier picks up from one Shippers and delivers to multiple Consignees in Canada

  • The CBSA would expect multiple ACI cargo transmissions as per the multiple contracts of carriage or bills of lading.
  • The Carrier is required to submit a multiple CCNs for this scenario even though the cargo is shipped from a single shipper..
  • Multiple PARS would be submitted by the importer/broker quoting the multiple CCNs.

For example:

Where a Non-Resident Importer has sales to a number of different retail outlets in Canada. As each sale is a separate transaction and separate bill of lading, the carrier is required to provide CBSA with multiple eManifest cargo transmissions and multiple CCNs. In this scenario multiple PARS release packages, based on the number of CCNs submitted by the carrier, would be submitted to CBSA to obtain release of the goods.

*Important Note: Prior to implementation of the highway carrier phase of ACI eManifest, when there were multiple bills of lading on one truck, it was possible in most cases, to obtain release of the goods with one PARS release package being presented to CBSA. Under the new regulations, there is no option available at this time that will allow for multiple eManifest cargo transmissions and multiple CCNs (multiple bills of lading) to be cleared on one PARS release package.

 

Scenario # 4: Multiple shippers transport their goods to one common location in the country of export. The location consolidates the shipments on to one new bill of lading for transportation from the consolidation location to the consignee in Canada.

  • The CBSA would expect one ACI cargo transmission as per the single contract of carriage or bill of lading.
  • The Carrier is required to submit a single CCN for this scenario even though the cargo is originally shipped from multiple shippers..
  • One PARS would be submitted by the importer/broker quoting the single CCN.

 

ACI eManifest Forum with CBSA – Wednesday, February 6, 2013

To help assist industry stakeholders, carriers, shippers and cross-border truckers in final preparation for the pending ACI eManifest enforcement deadline of May 1, 2013, The Canada Border Services Agency in cooperation with Pacific Customs Brokers and ABC Customs Brokers, are hosting an ACI eManifest Forum on Wednesday, February 6th, 2013. Concerns related to shipments containing multiple bills of lading and how these are to be handled will be addressed by CBSA as one of the key topics at the forum.  This forum will be held in a “town hall” format, offering attendees the opportunity to ask senior officials of CBSA and CFIA questions. Please submit your ACI eManifest questions to Pacific Customs Brokers prior to Monday, February 4th, 2013.

Who Should Attend:

  • Produce Importers
  • Floral Importers
  • Nursery Importers
  • Grocery Importers
  • Seafood Importers
  • Importers of Multi-Shippers & Mixed Loads
  • U.S. Non-Resident Importers Shipping to Multiple Consignees
  • Trucking Companies
  • Customs Brokers
  • 3PL’s & Freight Forwarders

Topics To Be Addressed:

  • Cargo Requirements & Related Release Options
  • eManifest Readiness
  • Shipments Containing Multiple Bills of Lading
  • Consolidations
  • AMPS
  • Industry Expert Panel Questions
  • Audience Questions

Keynote Speaker:

  • James J. Spina, eManifest Directorate, Senior Program Advisor, Canada Border Services Agency

Expert Panelists:

  • James J. Spina, eManifest Directorate, Senior Program Advisor,
    Canada Border Services Agency
  • Jan Brock, Chief of Commercial Operations, Pacific Highway District,
    Canada Border Services Agency
  • Representative – to be announced
    Canadian Food Inspection Agency

Date, Time & Location:

Wednesday, February 6, 2013
9:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.
Eaglequest Coyote Creek Golf Course
Grandview Room
7778 152nd Street, Surrey

Registration:

The cost to attend is $25 CAD plus tax.

Registration & Question Submission Deadline:

Monday, February 4, 2013

Question Submission:

CBSA is interested in your questions. We kindly request you to submit your eManifest questions in advance to Pacific Customs Brokers by Monday, February 4, 2013.

How to Register:

Complete the registration form and email or fax with payment to the below contact information.

Contact Information:

Pacific Customs Brokers – Yvette Fox
Phone 604.538.1566
Toll Free 888.538.1566
Fax 604.531.3120
Email events@pcb.ca

Download Registration Form >>

 

Do you have questions regarding ACI eManifest and its implementation or the ACI eManifest Forum? Please share yours in the comment section below or contact Pacific Customs Brokers for more information.

 

The Importance of a Bill of Lading

What is a Bill of Lading (BOL):

A bill of lading is a legal document between the shipper of particular goods and the carrier detailing the type, quantity, date of direct shipment and destination of the goods being carried. The bill of lading also serves as a receipt of shipment when the goods are delivered to the predetermined destination. This document must accompany the shipped goods, no matter the form of transportation, and must be signed by an authorized representative from the carrier, shipper and receiver. The carrier or the shipper can complete it, but the driver of the transport company is to sign and date it once the goods are on-board.

What does Customs look for on a Bill of Lading?

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) requires to know:

  • the number of pieces
  • total weight and
  • date of direct shipment for each shipment on board

The number of pieces, total weight and date of direct shipment is a requirement for the declaration made by the importer of record/customs broker. It is highly recommended that you provide a copy of the bill of lading to the importer of record/customs broker so that the information can be confirmed against the corresponding invoice(s) being declared. If a bill of lading is not provided to the customs broker, the carrier must still advise by other means, the number of pieces, total weight and date if direct shipment.

A carrier must always make the bill of lading available to a CBSA officer in the event it is requested.

 

Do you have questions on a Bill of Lading? Please share yours in the comments section below or contact Pacific Customs Brokers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bill of Lading: Top 4 Reasons You Need One

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) needs and wants to know exactly what’s on your truck. To help make sure all goods on your truck are accounted for and declared, you must supply a bill of lading or pick up receipt when faxing your Pre-Arrival Review System (PARS) entry to your customs broker.

Why is a Bill of Lading used?

1. The main purpose of the standard straight bill of lading is that it is a contract of carriage.

Other useful purposes include:

2. It may incorporate the full terms of the contract between the consignor and the carrier by reference.
3. It is a receipt signed by the carrier confirming whether goods matching the contract description have been received in good condition.
4. When completed in full, it helps the customs broker match up commercial clearance paperwork to ensure they are able to make a complete declaration for all goods aboard that truck.

The carrier or the shipper can complete it, but the driver of the transport company is to sign and date it once the goods are onboard his/her truck.

Important information on a bill of lading:

For Customs purposes, some of the most important details on the bill of lading are:

  1. Piece count (total skids, boxes, pallets)
  2. Weight (total weight of the goods listed)
  3. Description of goods
  4. Date (the date of pick up/export is used to establish the date for exchange rate)

If there is only one (1) location you have picked up goods from, then only one (1) bill of lading or pick up receipt is required. If you are picking up from multiple locations, then you need to have a bill of lading or pick up receipt for each location you’ve picked up from.

Commercial Documents

When picking up freight from the shipper, they may give commercial documents to you. If they do, please send them to the customs broker with the bill of lading or pick up receipt. It is important that you send the customs broker all documents you have. It helps ensure that all required documents are in place to declare those goods to Customs.

If the shipper does not supply you with commercial documents, please let the customs broker know as soon as you know, so that they can work on getting the documents in order.

Other Documents

Often, a commercial invoice and bill of lading are sufficient for the customs broker and CBSA to process your load. There are many instances where special documentation will be required. Some examples of goods that need additional documents are:

  • CFIA regulated goods (fresh fruits & vegetables, fresh cut flowers)
  • Transport Canada regulated goods (vehicles) – which require another government agency (in addition to CBSA) to review the import

When faxing your PARS to the customs broker (at least five hours in advance), simply affix your barcode label to the bill of lading, making sure you are not covering up any important information. Be sure to clearly indicate which port you’re crossing at and on what date and time. Please also include your phone number so that you can be contacted in the case there are any documentation issues.

Remember to ALWAYS confirm that your load has been set up before you get to the border.

Be accountable for the goods you are transporting and your cross border experience. Providing all the appropriate paperwork and allowing the customs broker time to do their part, will truly ease your journey.

 

Do you have questions on a Bill of Lading? Share them in our comments section below.

 

 

Mis-reporting Arrival Times Slows Down Processing of Clearances

Many carriers “mis-represent” the arrival times of their trucks in an effort to make sure that the shipment is set up for clearance by the time they arrive at the border. Not only is it not nice to mis-report arrival times to your customs broker, it really does not help your cause.

“If my truck is due Sunday at noon, I’ll tell the customs broker that it’s due Saturday at noon. That way I know for sure that my load will be set up by the time I arrive”.

In theory, this sounds like a great plan. In reality, it causes the whole system to break down and results in many delays. The most common time for this to occur is on Friday afternoons. Every carrier wants to make sure that all of their shipments are set up to clear before they leave for the day so they mis-report the arrival times. This creates a trickle-down effect that causes problems for customs brokers, carriers and even the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).

Most customs brokers have a “triage” system for handling PARS clearance requests. When documents are received they are placed in priority sequence based on arrival times. This works great until 20 carriers all say they will be there at 8:00 PM Friday. The customs broker has no way to know if these times are valid or not and works furiously to get all of these set up by the stated arrival time. Invariably, some shipments will not be set up in time. If you are one of the people who has mis-reported your arrival time, no big deal. However, if you are one of the honest ones and arrive on schedule, you could find that your shipment is not set up yet because the customs broker was busy setting up shipments that are not due for hours, or possibly days.

With the mandatory implementation date for ACI eManifest looming, carriers will need to review how they report arrival times. One of the requirements for reporting electronic pre-arrival info is the inclusion of an “accurate” arrival time. While we are not entirely sure how CBSA plans to deal with mis-reported arrival times, one of the proposed pre-arrival AMPS penalties is for “failing to provide true, accurate and complete information”.

Read more: ACI eManifest: Pre-arrival/ Pre-load Commercial Information AMPS

Regardless of how ACI eManifest affects the clearance process, it just makes good sense to report your arrival times accurately. Most customs brokers offer the ability to go onto their website to confirm that a shipment has been set up. See an example of Pacific Customs Brokers PARS Lookup and SCN Lookup. Pacific Customs Brokers also offers a free iPhone app, Border Pro iPhone App for Carriers,  that allows drivers and dispatchers to check PARS (shipments to Canada) and/or SCN (shipments to the USA) entries while in-transit at any time with an option of sending you an email or text message to alert you of your shipment status.

Download: the free Border Pro iPhone App for Carriers from the  iTunes App Store.

If you find that you are accurately reporting arrival times and that your shipments are consistently not set up when you arrive at the border, you should take it up with the customs broker(s) in question.

Carriers and customs brokers both work towards a common goal – getting the shipment to the customer as quickly and efficiently as possible. Open, honest communication can only help to make that goal more attainable.

 

Have you had a similar experience? Share your thoughts in our comments sections below.

 

ACI eManifest Implementation Updates – Now What?

Canada Border Services Agency(CBSA) Updates Implementation Timelines

Here is what we know:

CBSA issued the following statement late last week:

As you are aware, on November 1, 2011, an 18-month implementation timeline began, providing highway carriers 12 months to incorporate eManifest requirements into their business processes.

As part of our ongoing project analysis, the eManifest implementation timeline has been reviewed taking into account several factors. Based on the review, on November 1, 2012, an informed compliance period will begin during which carriers will not be turned around or issued zero-rated penalties for non-compliance but will be informed of the requirement to transmit advance highway and cargo and conveyance data. Throughout the informed compliance period, the CBSA will continue to assist clients in becoming eManifest-compliant through communication, outreach, compliance monitoring and other support activities. In May 2013, when eManifest-enabling regulations are expected to be in place, requirements will be mandatory and non-compliant carriers could be subject to penalties.

 

What does that mean to you as a carrier:

  • If you are fully set up and registered as an eManifest participant – you can begin filing eManifest conveyance and cargo data immediately.
  • If you are one of the many carriers that are not yet registered – it means that you can continue to conduct cross-border business without fear of penalty, or being denied entry.

What Pacific Customs Brokers recommends:

  • Carriers that have not yet registered – to make the most of this short reprieve and begin the registration process immediately. We all know how quickly time slips by and it will be May 1, 2013 before we know it and then carriers who are non-compliant will run the huge risk of incurring monetary penalties and / or being denied entry.
  • Carriers that have registered - with a third party service provider, or who plan to use the CBSA web portal, may want to consider having a backup plan in the event of system failures, power outages, internet connectivity issues, etc. There is no cost to carriers to register with Pacific Customs Brokers as your secondary service provider as it gives you a viable and instantly available alternative in the event that you cannot file your ACI eManifest for some reason.

How Pacific Customs Brokers can help:

Pacific Customs Brokers is fully aware of just how intimidating this whole program can seem. If you are just getting on board with eManifest and are a little unsure of how the program works and how it will affect your business, we recommend attending one of our ACI eManifest Information Sessions on October 16th, 2012.  In these sessions we will explain in-depth how the program works and answer all of your questions.

In our ongoing effort to provide a wide variety of carrier-related services, Pacific Customs Brokers offers both self and full service eManifest filing. We also provide ACE e-Manifest filing services for shipments into the USA.

For more information, questions you may have or to request an ACI eManifest setup package please contact us at 855.542.6644 or email us at emanifest@borderpro.ca.