Importers – Who needs a Customs Broker to help clear goods through CBP
Do I need a Customs Broker for to clear my goods through Customs and Border Protection (CBP)?
There is no legal requirement for you to hire a Customs Broker to clear your goods. However, many importers opt to do so for the convenience. Customs Brokers are licensed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection to conduct CBP business on behalf of importers. They take the burden of filling out paperwork and obtaining a CBP bond off of the importer’s hands.
The importer is always ultimately responsible for knowing CBP requirements and for ensuring their importation complies with all federal rules and regulations, but using a Customs Broker can save you from making costly mistakes.
If you choose to file your own Customs entry, please read our publication Importing into the United States for an overview of what is involved.
If your goods are being imported via an express courier, the courier automatically utilizes Customs Brokers to clear your goods on your behalf. If you have any concerns about their charges for this service, please contact the courier company directly. Customs Brokers charge for their services, so you may want to contact a few to discuss rates.