Roughly 24 million containers arrive at our ports and borders every year. Ensuring each one is safe to enter the country is a huge job, which is where customs officials come in. There are a number of reasons your cargo could be stopped and even seized, especially if you are not familiar with proper procedure. That being said, here are some information and tips to help you stay off Customs radar.

How to Avoid Trouble

There is a myriad of ways you could get into hot water with Customs and Border Protection. If you want to stay on the organization’s good side, the simplest piece of advice we could offer would be to not do anything illegal! But unfortunately, it’s not always clear what constitutes “right” and “wrong” in international shipping, and plenty of well-intentioned shippers (far from being hardened criminals) can nonetheless end up with fines – or even felonies – if they aren’t experts on import and export regulations.

Of course, most of these blunders don’t have anything to do with harboring fugitives or smuggling illegal drugs into the country Instead, Custom is more likely to seize your cargo as a result of some benign blunder like improper documentation or unapproved imports.

Not Having Government Approval

Although Customs doesn’t officially require importers to obtain a license, you might still need to get approval for your goods from another regulatory agency, such as the NAFDAC, NAQS or DVPCS– especially if you are shipping food or medicine. Tobacco products, firearms, alcohol, and wildlife all require special approval, too. Be sure to check what restrictions might exist on your commodities and diligently fill out any paperwork beforehand.

You might be surprised at what types of items require a permit – or at least permission – before you can import them into the country. For example, if you are shipping electronic products that must meet a specific radiation standard, you will need to fill out a stack of forms first – and wait for their validation, of course. This is a particularly pertinent issue for shippers who regularly import goods meant for human consumption. Not only do they need to meet standards for the food and/or beverages they plan to bring into the country, but they must also verify that in shipping these goods, they aren’t introducing any pests or invasive species to the countries soil.

The key here is to ensure that you have obtained all permits, licenses, and proper documentation before even allowing the shipment to leave its homeport. If you procrastinate or overlook even a single form, you could end up in a quagmire of processing requests and fines.

In Closing

An organized shipper with an orderly file of documents and quick access to all licensure and regulatory information will practically walk on water, while disorganization will not only drown you in delays, but also be a death sentence for your business.

. Hence, to get guaranteed, on-time, safe and speedy delivery, Redoxcorp Shipping and Logistics Limited is the best option to ship your goods and avoid custom issues and penalties.

Our broad range of customs brokerage services ensure a smooth and on time border crossing of shipments, without administrative burden, delays or penalties.

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