U.S. Customs Update: New Electronic In-Bond Requirements Have Arrived, Is Your Solution Adequate?

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has published a final rule that adopts amendments to CBP regulations regarding changes to the in-bond process published in the Federal Register on February 22, 2012. The changes in this rule, including the automation of the in-bond process, will enhance CBP's ability to regulate and track in-bond merchandise and ensure that in-bond merchandise is properly entered or exported. We have reviewed the rule changes, and have highlighted what we believe are the most salient portions for you below:

  • Electronic in-bond applications will now be required for in-bond merchandise transported by ocean/rail/truck through ACE or ABI.

  • After the rule is fully implemented, paper in-bond will no longer be accepted. Bonded carriers will be required to file electronically either directly with CBP or through a 3rd-party service solution, such as Vilden's e-CLEAR Customs Filing Solution.

  • To provide the trade with sufficient time to adjust to the new requirements and to consider changes to the business processes that may be necessary to achieve full compliance, CBP is allowing a 90-day flexible enforcement period so the trade community can adjust their business processes.

  • The rule will maintain the reporting period of two working days for bonded carriers to report the arrival of merchandise at the port of destination or port of exportation.

  • When liability is transferred from one bonded carrier to another, the report of arrival must be filed by the original bonded carrier, with a new in-bond issued by the new bonded carrier.

  • The in-bond process must be completed within 30 days, regardless of how many transfer of liabilities are involved.  For barge, the period will be 60 days. The clock for transit time will begin with vessel arrival or CBP move authorization, whichever is later.

  • In-bonds must be reported to the six-digit Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) number.

  • For multiple container shipments arriving by container, the general order clock will begin 15 days after the arrival of the entire in-bond shipment.

Vilden's e-CLEAR has the ability to file electronic in-bond and will comply with the new rule. If you are not already filing electronically or fully meeting the new requirements, this is the best time to consider finding a solution before the rule is fully enforced. Click here to see more details on how e-CLEAR can help you file electronic in-bond information directly to U.S. Customs.  Have questions or need further clarification? Contact us anytime at, we will be more than happy to assist you in any way. Below you will find a link to the Federal Register with the full rule changes, as well as the questions and responses from Customs during the comment period. Click here to view Federal Register Entry