One of our most common services, for both new and existing clients, is reviewing customs entries for accuracy. Clients understandably want to make sure that they are not overpaying duties on their imports. This, of course, leads to examination of the commercial invoices.
As everyone involved in international trade knows, the commercial invoice is one of the primary documents of the transaction. While there is no universal standard format for commercial invoices, including the following key elements will help reduce customs delays and entry mistakes:
Invoice Number, Page Numbers – Avoids confusion for entries with multiple CIs or CIs with multiple pages.
Country of Origin– Best to use ISO country codes.
Related/Not Related parties
Incoterms and currency- these are elements of the sales contract. Indicate version of Incoterms (2010, 2020) as all parties may not be aware of updates.
Harmonized tariff # and duty rate if known
Description of goods – avoid trade names, brand names. What is it? What is it made of? What is it used for?
Summary of Value- must include IV Invoice Value. Can also include NDC Non Dutiable Charge (subtractions), AMMV Add to Make Market Value (additions), NEV Net Entered Value (bottom line- dutiable)
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