U.S. CBP IFS Filing Services

If you or your company is importing goods into the U.S. by ocean vessel, the first step to be taken on an ocean shipment is to address the Importer Security Filing ( ISF ) with U.S. Customs and Border Protection ( CBP ).

The ISF filing requires U.S. importers or their agents and vessels to file data electronically with CBP for inbound ocean import shipments. This allows CBP and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to identify high-risk shipments to prevent smuggling and provide enhanced cargo security and safety. An ISF MUST be filed with U.S. CBP a minimum of 24 hours prior to cargo being loaded on board a ship in the foreign port of origin.

The penalties set forth by the U.S. government for a late ISF filing is $ 5,000 per transaction. That penalty can be increased to $ 10,000 per shipment if multiple violations are revealed. All ISF filings are required even if late or if goods have arrived the U.S. The failure to file an ISF may result in fines and delays to your shipment when arriving a U.S. port. Such cases may also result in costly intensive physical examinations of the cargo by U.S. CBP.

An ISF requires submitting electronic digits of 10, two and five data elements, which are dependent on the type of shipment or party filing the ISF.

10 + 2 ISF: This filing is a set of 10 data elements needed to comply with regulations for goods being imported into the U.S. The first 10 data elements are the responsibility of the importer and must be filed 24 hours before cargo is laden aboard a ship ready for delivery to the U.S. The Vessel Operator handles the +2, which contains the vessel stow plan and container status messages. These elements are required 24 hours prior to the ship’s arrival at a U.S. port.

ISF 5: FROB, I.E. and T&E cargo requires only 5 data elements.

    Importers need to be aware of the fact the ISF filing requires importers or their agents and ocean vessel operators to file data electronically. There are several basics of which importers need to know about ISF filings:

  • Antidumping and / or countervailing dutieAll ISF filings are done electronically
  • Corrections must be made before ships dock at U.S. ports
  • Only the party submitting the filing can make changes

Labay/Summers International, Inc., regularly addresses ISF filing requirements as a part of the importing process for our ocean import clients.