CBP looks to customs brokers as their front-line partner for, in their words, “facilitating legitimate trade.” Brokers file more than 96% of the entries the agency processes for admissibility decisions. As the agency looks to ratchet up enforcement and interdiction of drugs, opioids, intellectual property rights (IPR) violations and duty avoidance for antidumping and other trade remedy actions, they have proposed new regulations for brokers that would see them collecting additional information during the on-boarding process for not only the new importer with whom they are working, but also the individual granting that authority through a power of attorney.
Published for notice and comment in the Federal Register on August 14, 2019, with a deadline of October 15, 2019, the agency has offered as a sample of proposed changes the following:
At the time the POA is obtained by the broker, the broker must collect, at a minimum, the following information from the client, if applicable:
(1) The client’s name;
(2) For a client who is an individual, the client’s date of birth;Start Printed Page 40305
(3) For a client that is a partnership, corporation, or association, the grantor’s date of birth;
(4) For a client that is a partnership, corporation, or association, the client’s trade or fictitious names;
(5) The address of the client’s physical location (for a client that is a partnership, corporation, or association, the physical location would be the client’s headquarters) and telephone number;
(6) The client’s email address and business website;
(7) A copy of the grantor’s unexpired government-issued photo identification;
(8) The client’s Internal Revenue Service (IRS) number, employer identification number (EIN), or importer of record (IOR) number;
(9) The client’s publicly available business identification number (e.g., Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, etc.);
(10) A recent credit report;
(11) A copy of the client’s business registration and license with state authorities; and
(12) The grantor’s authorization to execute power of attorney on behalf of client.
When the agency has reviewed and adjudicated the comments and issued their final changes, Kesco will update and advise importers of the additional data collection which will be undertaken and cite the relevant regulations. We are aware that customs brokers are comparison shopped and have many a time had a conversation where a sentence began with the phrase, “Well, my other broker…”
At Kesco, we are committed to working with importers to facilitate the importation of their cargo into the United States and our responsibility for the security and admissibility of that cargo also means adhering to the regulations which some may find onerous and intrusive but are still required.