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Moving goods around the world can be a task with a lot of steps and logistics. However, when importing and exporting goods in and out of the United States, you will need customs surety bonds. We’ll look into what is a US customs bond, when you need it and how to obtain one.

Customs bonds are used anytime you want to import goods, or move imported goods through the United States. A surety licensed bondsman can provide single entry and continuous bonds, depending on which one will suit your needs. Single entry customs bonds, as the name states, cover one specific shipment. A continuous customs bond covers your imports for one year.

What Is a Customs Bond?

A customs bond is an insurance policy that ensures duties, taxes, and fees be paid to customs and border protection. This government agency manages payments for customs import bonds for all ports of entry in the United States. A licensed customs broker will assist you in purchasing a bond that guarantees that even in the event of bankruptcy, the importing company can pay their share.

A customs bond is a contract between three parties, customs, an importer, and a surety. The importer pays the surety a one time or yearly fee to a surety. The surety acts as an insurance company for customs.

In the event that all the duties and fees associated are not paid to customs, the surety will cover the monetary amount. The importer is still obliged to pay the surety back under the indemnity agreement of the bond.

Types of Customs Bonds

You can purchase a customs bond from a surety company for either a single piece of merchandise, or a continuous customs bond that covers you for one year. A single entry bond may end up costing close to the price of a continuous bond, so it is worth considering what type of bond is best for you.

Some additional advantages to opting for a continuous customs bond are lower costs, faster processing time, faster customs review turnaround, and better reporting possibilities. For those shipping goods frequently, a continuous customs bond is a better investment.

The most common type of bond is the Activity 1 Importer/Broker bond. This bond is required by customs when the imported merchandise has a value of over $2,500. If your merchandise value is below $2,500, it still may be valuable to purchase a bond for your protection, or in case anything goes wrong with your shipment. Trusted shipping partners like Asiana USA will handle this for you, so that you don’t have to get caught up in the bond process.

An Activity 2 Custodian of Bonded Merchandise Bond is required if your company is a domestic carrier and moves imported cargo across the United States. The bond protects this company while the cargo is in their possession. If you are carrying cargo across an international border, you will need that country’s bond in addition to this one.

International Carrier Customs Bond

The Type 3 International Carrier Customs Bond is required if you are entering the United States through International Waters. These bonds are needed when transporting passengers and goods into the United States. It helps make sure that a vessel’s manifest is accurate and facilitates the processing and customs clearing time.

How Can I Obtain a Customs Bond?

Once you decide what suits your business purposes, you will want to know how to get a customs bond. All information regarding bonds can be found on the Customs and Border Patrol website. However, consider working with an experienced international shipping company like Asiana USA, who can handle all the paperwork for you.

Final Word

International shipping can be a complicated process. Keeping track of regulations, fees, and schedules of different countries can be challenging, so partner with an international shipping and freight forwarding company that can help.

At Asiana USA, we make sure your shipment is correctly bonded and provide safe and reliable shipping. Call Asiana USA today at 855-500-1808 to request a quote.

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