Marisol International Transportation & Logistics Blog

Importer Security Filings: 4 Facts to Know Before Importing

Posted by Chelsea Mitchell on Apr 28, 2015 8:49:00 AM

On January 26, 2009, the Importer Security Filing and Additional Carrier Requirements (commonly known as ISF or '10+2') went into effect, changing the rules for U.S. cargo arriving by vessel. The new rule required U.S. importers to submit shipment information to a CBP-approved electronic data interchange system. The required information provided CBP with the ability to identify high-risk shipments in an effort to prevent smuggling, ensuring cargo safety and security. Failure to comply with ISF requirements could result in monetary penalties, increased inspections and delay of cargo. So what do U.S. importers need to know about ISF '10+2' requirements prior to importing? 


What is an Importer Security Filing? 

The Importer Security Filing (ISF) is advance cargo information which is electronically transmitted to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. 

Who is responsible for the filing?

The ISF Importer is required to submit the ISF. Typically, the ISF Importer is the goods' owner, purchaser, consignee, or agent such as a licensed customs broker (LCB). However, for foreign cargo remaining on board, the ISF Importer is the ocean carrier. 

What information must be submitted?

Importers, or their LCB, must provide eight data elements, no later than 24 hours before the cargo is laden aboard a vessel destined for the United States. Those data element include:

  1. Seller
  2. Buyer
  3. Import of Record Number / FTZ Applicant Identification Number
  4. Consignee Number(s)
  5. Manufacturer (or supplier)
  6. Ship to Party
  7. Country of Origin
  8. Commodity Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) Number 

Two additional data elements must be submitted as early as possible, but no later than 24 hours prior to the ship's arrival at a U.S. port. These data elements are:

  • Container Stuffing Location
  • Consolidator 

What are the penalties of non-compliance? 

CBP may issue liquidated damages ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 per violation for the submission of an inaccurate, incomplete or untimely filing. If goods arrive in the U.S. without an ISF of file, CBP may withhold the release or transfer of the cargo. Additionally, CBP may refuse to grant a permit to unlad for the merchandise; and if such cargo is unladen without permission, it may be subject to seizure. Furthermore, noncompliant cargo could be subject to "do not load" orders at origin or could be flagged for further inspection on arrival. 

Compliance with government rules and regulations is the foundation to a successful import program. However, these rules and regulations are constantly evolving and changing scope, creating a dynamic situation for shippers. Licensed customs brokers can help importers understand laws in order to comply with government agencies such as U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, as well as other agencies involved with the importation of goods into the United States. 

Allow Marisol International to file ISF information on your behalf, reducing cargo delays while streamlining the import process. Marisol's logistics professionals work diligently with origin agents to gather mandatory ISF information prior to deadlines. Contact us today for more information regarding Importer Security Filings, customs brokerage, cargo insurance or customs bonds

Importer Checklist: Save Time and Money 

Topics: Importing, Compliance

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