The world’s largest economy can be a vital shipping destination for businesses of all sizes. If you’re looking to ship goods into the U.S. our fast and reliable service helps you get your shipment where it needs to be on time.
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If you’re shipping to the U.S. you’ll need to include a commercial invoice with your shipping documents. Here are a few things to remember when completing them:
All shipments must contain a commercial invoice. You can download a template for one, here. This needs to be completed in English.
Make sure you include a full and accurate description of your goods on your commercial invoice. Try to avoid generic descriptions.
On your commercial invoice, you should list your goods’ country of origin. This is where your goods were manufactured and not where you’re sending them from.
Either the shipper, customs agent or recipient needs to provide the importer's EIN on the commercial invoice. If you’re using our template, write this within the ‘Additional Information’ box at the bottom - if the EIN number is known. This will help speed up the importation process.
Remember to include your shipment’s HS code on the commercial invoice. You can learn more about HS codes, here. Also try to include the receiver's contact details - this saves a lot of time if we have any questions later on.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the importation of a huge range of goods. Each FDA-regulated product needs to be electronically screened before it enters the U.S.
With the exception of most meat and poultry, the following items need to be approved by the FDA.
For more details, please visit the FDA's import page. You can do that here.
Shipments need to be electronically processed before the import process can begin.
This starts by submitting the details of FDA-regulated products via the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBS) system.
Upon entry, each product’s HS code will determine the next steps required to comply with all importation requirements.
As an authorised U.S. customs broker, we can manage the whole process on your behalf – meaning you don’t need to worry about FDA regulations.
Let our experts help your shipment arrive safely and on time to the U.S.
Let us handle the customs regulations while you focus on your business.
Some products require you to provide us (and the U.S. customs) with a few more details.
Unless you require an additional permit or certificate, simply include this information on your commercial invoice. If you run out of space on your invoice, create a separate worksheet and attach it to your shipping documents.
If your shipment includes any of the items below, click on the bold text to reveal more information.
If you’re shipping these items, you’ll need to be registered with the FDA.
You’ll also need to include a ‘Drop Ball Certificate’ with your shipping documents.
This certificate confirms the lenses are adequately impact resistant. Learn more about this here.
If you’re importing a motor vehicle or any related equipment (such as child restraint systems or headlamps) into the U.S., you’ll need to include a HS7 form with your shipping documents.
You can obtain a HS7 form here.
Depending on the vehicle (and engine, if shipped separately), you may require additional documentation. Please visit the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) website for more information.
Non-U.S. clothing and textile items with a value in excess of $5 must be labeled with the following:
Additional information is required for watches valued in excess of $800.
If you’re shipping printed circuit boards (PCB), bearings or integrated circuits, you need to provide additional details to help calculate the correct duty rates. These include:
Please note: we do not ship any form of firearms.
We also have stringent restrictions on the shipment of alcohol and tobacco.
If you’d like to ship either of these goods to the U.S. please get in contact with our Special Services team. Find out more here.
If the value of your footwear shipment is in excess of $800, you’ll need an Interim Footwear Invoice.
You can get this invoice here (via FedEx).
Exceptions for providing an invoice include:
If you’re shipping an antique or original work of art, you can claim preferential duty rates for non-U.S. goods worth in excess of $2000.
Most electrical equipment doesn’t require additional documentation. However, if you’re shipping equipment capable of causing harm, you’ll need to include a statement with your shipment.
If you’re shipping DVDs or motion picture films, product descriptions need to include the format and content details.
You’re additionally required to include a signed statement declaring the following:
The imported film(s) contains no obscene or immoral matter, nor any matter advocating or urging treason or insurrection against the United States.
If you’re shipping chemicals, mixtures or articles that contain a chemical substance, you must confirm your shipment complies with the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).
To do so, you must complete a TSCA form confirming your shipment either complies with all applicable rules or that the chemicals are not subject to guidelines.
You can find this form here (via FedEx).
Examples of goods that require complicity with TSCA include:
Owners, operators, or agents in charge of domestic or foreign facilities that manufacture/process, pack, or hold food for consumption in the U.S. are required to register the facility with the FDA.
Click here to learn more and register with the FDA.
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