What Does a Los Angeles Customs Broker Really Do?

The importing and exporting of goods is a complicated situation. That is why companies hire custom brokers to act as their middlemen to clear shipments of imported goods, prepare all the necessary documentation and papers to export these shipments as well as collect taxes. Furthermore, one of their duties is to help the company when it comes to dealing with legislation.

Customs brokers may charge you fees depending on the percentage of the value of the given shipment to be imported. However, fixed rates can be negotiated between the broker and the importer, depending on the frequency of deliveries.

To give you a clear idea, here are some of the duties of a customs broker:

  • customs valuation and clearance
  • classification of tariff
  • customs clearance is some government initiated programs
  • facilitation and consulting in international trade
  • import/export management purchased order
  • national or regional warehousing
  • import services for non-residents


Why do you need a customs broker?

Depending on the specific needs of your business, here are some reasons why you should consider hiring the services of a customs broker.


  1. Knowledge of the complex requirements in regulation

Some businesses may hire a staff member who is well-versed in complex regulatory requirements regarding transportation of goods, or they can employ a customs brokerage company. A lot of excellent companies are out there who specialize in freight forwarding, warehouse, and distribution, as well as import and export of products.


  1. Facilitates custom clearance process

Customs brokers are experienced professionals in their field, equipped with the necessary skills to facilitate the customs clearance process. Furthermore, they are the ones who make sure that goods or products will be shipped to their destinations safely as possible.


  1. Help cut down unwanted costs

Customs brokers help you avoid unnecessary costs that come with the ever-changing rules and  regulations in cross-border agreements. They see to it to avoid shipment delays and other hefty fines and penalties that may occur.


  1. Making paperwork convenient for you

It all makes sense to entrust all the necessary paperwork and other communication made with different organizations to an expert in the field. It is to prevent your company or business from making unnecessary mistakes.


  1. Right identification of goods

What you need to know is that are individually classified and divided into large groups and sub-groups for easy identification. Customs brokers are skilled in this area.


  1. Help verify Customs declarations

Preparing your customs declarations is vital. A flawed customs declaration can cause your business sanctions and hefty fines. To avoid this from ever happening to you, you need to verify everything first with your licensed customs broker.


  1. Ensure a smooth shipment of a formal-entry commodity

Some products like chemicals, cosmetics, food, biological materials from research and medical usage, pharmaceuticals, dairy and agricultural products will need a formal entry to be shipped. Furthermore, other products exceeding the cost of $2500 will also need a formal entry. At this point, you will need an experienced broker to handle these kinds of affairs, and these products will be likely held up for shipping until they are cleared with all the requirements and paperwork.


  1. Use technology to help you save money and time

All brokers have automated systems that have the power to exchange data of shipments with US and Canada customs.

They also have other tools at their disposal to improve efficiency and reduce paperwork and costs. Examples of this are File Transfer Protocol, e-billing options, Electronic Data Interchange, and more.


  1. Can help you obtain the NAFTA Certificate

Some documents are easy to process and complete, however, obtaining the NAFTA certificate is different. If you’re getting one, all goods and products you lost must qualify under its rules. Keep in mind that you must have a valid certificate of origin that you can show to authorities. Your customs can help you with this by determining the source of goods as well as provide you with viable solutions in case a specific product doesn’t make it with the NAFTA requirements.


The takeaway

Why should you hire a customs broker? Well, because you’re putting your business in the hands of experienced professionals who know the ins and outs of the trade. They’re known experts in their field, and they have successfully passed the Customs Broker Licensure Exam. They know the rules as well as protocols and regulations that can make clear your shipment as well as ensure safe and smooth delivery of your products and goods to their intended destinations. Every business is different, and you will need a Los Angeles customs broker who is responsive as well as flexible to every need of your business. Packair offers import services with vast experience in customs regulation and compliance as well as dealing with government agencies.



Craig Ericson

Craig Ericson is a business enthusiast writing for Pack Air. His passion for writing was something that he retained, which motivated him to write pieces to help even the common reader understand a wide variety of topics. He likes to play basketball during his free time.

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