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HELP! CBP Seized My Tobacco Products as Drug Paraphernalia, What Now?

posted by Jennifer Diaz May 30, 2017 0 comments

USMap_Marijuana

Our office has increasingly received requests for guidance on importation of marijuana paraphernalia products to the U.S. where twenty-six (26) states have legalized the use of marijuana for medical purposes and/or personal consumption such as California, Massachusetts, Maine and Nevada. The purpose of this article is to dispel the confusion as to why paraphernalia products (grinders, storage containers, rolling paper, pipes, vape pens, etc.) are continuously being seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), even when such products may be used by tobacco smokers. It is important to address the realities between federal and state laws regulating drug paraphernalia products so importers can avoid CBP’s enforcement of U.S. Laws.

Why Does CBP Stop Drug Paraphernalia?

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CBPCounterfeitsDepartment of Homeland SecurityImportIPR, Trademarks and LogosSeizuresU.S.Customs

31,560 Shipments Were Seized by CBP in 2016 for ONE Reason

posted by Jennifer Diaz March 23, 2017 0 comments

ipr

Last year, on a typical day the U.S. Customs and Border Protections (CBP) seized about $3.8 million worth of products because of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Violations. CBP reported that the total number of IPR seizures has increased nine (9) percent since last year, from 28,865 in 2015 to 31,560 in 2016. With the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) exceeding $1.3 trillion.

What is Causing the Increase in Seizures?

Recordation of Trademark And Copyright With The CBP

In addition to registration of IPR with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO for trademarks), or the U.S. Copyright Office (for copyrights), owners can record said trademark or copyright with CBP. This additional step grants CBP additional enforcement power in both seizing counterfeit and piratical goods as well as thereafter issuing penalties for the MSRP value of the goods. In previous blog posts, we explained benefits of taking the extra step of recording your registered trademark or copyright with CBP, and CBP’s additional enforcement powers as a result of the recordations. Continue Reading

Best PracticesCBPCustoms BrokerDepartment of Homeland SecurityEventsImportInternational TravelU.S.Customs

CBP’s 2017 West Coast Trade Symposium…Don’t Miss It!

posted by Jennifer Diaz February 20, 2017 4 Comments

west coast trade symposium

UPDATE – CBP JUST ANNOUNCED TODAY that registration will OFFICIALLY open on Wednesday, March 22, 2017, 12:00 pm Eastern. Keep your eyes peeled for more information from CBP!

We always strive to keep you informed of the latest and greatest trade events. In this vain, U.S. Customs and Border Protection will be hosting the 2017 West Coast Trade Symposium from May 24-25 in Scottsdale, Arizona.

More information about the event, including where to register, will be provided at a later date (and will be posted here). You can be sure we’ll keep you in the loop as we hear more.

If you need reasons to attend (or to get your employer to foot the bill), check out these top 5 reasons!

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Now, More than Ever, Be Wary of and Responsive to a CBP Form 28!

posted by Jennifer Diaz December 22, 2016 2 Comments

rob-articleU.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”), having previously identified AD/CVD evasion as priority trade issue, is ramping up its efforts to further combat AD/CVD evasion. Effective August 22, 2016, interested parties can, in addition to pursuing either a civil False Claims Act/Qui Tam Action or a criminal trade violation, now report Enforce and Protect Act (“EAPA”) violations using CBP’s e-Allegation mechanism.

Who is an Interested Party?

Interested parties qualified to use this violation reporting mechanism include:

• Foreign manufacturers, producers, exporters, or importers of covered merchandise or a trade or business association a majority of the members of which are producers, exporters, or importers of such merchandise
• Manufacturers, producers, exporters, or importers in the U.S. of a domestic like product
• A certified union or recognized union group of workers that is representative of an industry engaged in the manufacture, production or wholesale of a domestic like product in the U.S.
• A trade or business association a majority of the members of which manufacture, produce, or wholesale a domestic like product in the U.S.
• If covered merchandise is a processed agricultural product, a coalition or trade union that is representative of processors, processors and producers, or processors and growers Continue Reading

Best PracticesCBPCustoms BrokerDepartment of Homeland SecurityEventsImportInternational TravelU.S.Customs

CBP EAST COAST Trade Symposium (#ECTS2016) Dec 1-2, 2016!

posted by Jennifer Diaz November 11, 2016 2 Comments

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The CBP East Coast Trade Symposium theme is “Trade’s Impact on American Health, Safety and Economic Prosperity” and will take place from December 1-2, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in Arlington, Virginia.

Our top 5 reasons to attend including an invite to a premier networking event are below!

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Best PracticesCubaDepartment of Homeland SecurityImportInternational TravelOFACSeizuresU.S.Customs

Cuban Cigars Seized by CBP

posted by Jennifer Diaz September 22, 2016 0 comments

Mark Twain once said, “I never smoke to excess – that is, I smoke in moderation, only one cigar at a time.”cuban-cigars-seize-2

With the loosening of restrictions on travel and trade with Cuba, including the authorization to import Cuban Cigars (for personal use only, under a certain value), persons under “U.S. jurisdiction” are getting caught right and left trying to take advantage and import more than their share of Cuban cigars to the US. In May of this year, Maxim magazine declared Cuban Cigars are still the worlds best. However, as relations thaw, will the Cuban cigar be able to take back the market share it lost in the past half century when countries like Dominican Republic and Nicaragua have served the US? That is a question recently posed by Will Yakwowicz in an article for Inc. earlier this year.

Although you are allowed to bring Cuban cigars back to the U.S. (if you are on an “authorized trip” to Cuba) there is a limit and the United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) can, and will, seize any amount over the allowed limit.

What is the scope and limit on how many cigars I can bring in?

Will Customs and Border Protection seize as little as 1 cigar?

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Best PracticesBISCBPCosmeticsCubaCustoms BrokerDepartment of Homeland SecurityEventsExportFDA IssuesFoodFSMAImportMedical DevicesOWITSpeaking

3 Part Compliance Seminar Series You DON’T Want to Miss!

posted by Jennifer Diaz August 24, 2015 0 comments
We are excited to announce our upcoming 3 part seminar series on ImportingExporting, and FDA Compliance! Government and private speakers will participate.  
Each seminar will provide resources for new and experienced international trade
professionals including:

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Port Miami Tunnel Opening Celebration!

posted by Jennifer Diaz May 19, 2014 0 comments

photoToday was the historic PortMiami Tunnel Opening (where you can watch my video of the first 3 trucks that officially entered the port tunnel)!  A better video can be found here, courtesy of Local 10.

As the Miami Herald reported today, four long years and $915 million dollars went into this tunnel that will now allow both cruise traffic and trucks to bypass downtown Miami and instead, head straight to the highway.

Much needed relief for residents. And… No Tolls!

Perhaps one of the more touching moments was when all of the 900+ workers were celebrated and extremely proud exiting the tunnel.

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CBP Trade Day – Port of Miami

posted by Jennifer Diaz March 17, 2014 1 Comment

cargo at portTrade Day is coming to Miami, courtesy of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, (CBP) on April 2, 2014.  The ports of  Champlain, Boston, Savannah, Buffalo and Detroit have held Trade Day (some already twice) and we are thrilled CBP’s Port of Miami is bringing Trade Day to us.

This is the time to take advantage.  Importers, exporters, customhouse brokers, freight forwarders and all other interested parties in the international trade community – if you have been looking for an informal opportunity to meet one-on-one with government officials that are responsible for processing and facilitating trade related import transactions and enforcing the various Free Trade Agreements and trade laws, this is your chance.

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Federal Government Shutdown ENDS

posted by Jennifer Diaz October 17, 2013 0 comments

Co Authored by Omar Franco 

Last night Congress voted to end the first federal government shutdown in seventeen years and avert a default on U.S. debt. The deal brokered between Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) provides government funding through Jan. 15, 2014, at almost the same rate as in FY-2013 after automatic spending cuts. The debt limit would be extended through Feb. 7, 2014, if requested by President Obama. The legislation includes a mechanism to allow Congress to block the suspension through action on a resolution of disapproval. The Health and Human Services Department would be required to ensure that health-insurance exchanges verify the eligibility of all individuals applying for tax credits and cost sharing under the Affordable Care Act. Federal employees would be paid for furlough days resulting from the shutdown and members of Congress would be denied their cost-of-living increase in FY-2014.

The Senate passed the bill first with 81 senators voting in favor and 18 voting against the compromise. The House then passed the legislation 285-144, relying mostly on Democratic votes to pass the bill. Alongside the bill, the Senate agreed to a provision that House and Senate leaders would appoint a conference committee to negotiate a budget agreement by Dec. 13.