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The United States, as most countries, likes to track their imports and exports for balance of trade information. The process to accomplish this is by the Form 7525-V, the Shipper's Export Declaration. Each shipment that qualifies must have this filed prior to the departure of the goods from the country. Failure to file correctly or timely can result in fines or penalties being assessed against the party that was supposed to file.


Each shipment leaving the Unites States must have the appropriate forms filed prior to departure. US Census requires the Form 7525-V be filed at the time of departure for air freight, and 48 hours prior to departure for ocean freight (in most cases). Failure to file by the appropriate deadline results in a monetary penalty of $50 each of the first three calendar days after the filing deadline, and then $100 each calendar day thereafter to a maximum of $2,500 per occurrence. A filing is required for any shipment where for a single shipper, for a single harmonized tariff code, the goods sold are $2,500 or more.


It is the responsibility of the USPPI (United States Principal Party of Interest) to file or ensure these are filed timely. Any mis-filed or late entries would be their responsibility. They may then try to hold their forwarder or NVOCC accountable - but in the eyes of the government, it was their responsibility to complete (not their forwarders'). The USPPI is the United States company that is selling the cargo being moved, or the US company who owns the freight. The United States does not care about other parties other than the direct relationship between the US party and their direct customer who bought the goods. The exception is that if a shipment is in bond from the US to another country and then exported, US Census wants the information on the final consignee (once out of bond). While in bond they don't care how many times it moves.


This is accomplished by use of the AES Direct filing system that shippers, forwarders, NVOCCs, ocean lines, air freight consolidators, etc., can join free of charge. This is a direct link to the US Government database for US Census. Once an SED is filed in this system, it provides two tracking numbers back: one external, and one internal. The external tracking number (XTN) is typed onto the master ocean instructions, or the MAWB if moved by air freight. The internal tracking number (ITN) is used by US Census for internal tracking of individual entries. The XTN is the TAX ID number for the filer, plus their internal job reference. So if you have a consolidated container, you have multiple XTNs if the shippers file and one of the forwarders files (see below, SCENARIOS). NOTE: The ocean lines for shipments ex-USA want ONLY ONE XTN NUMBER ON THEIR MASTER INSTRUCTIONS (see below, SCENARIOS, #3).



Most U.S. forwarders and shippers do not fully understand the above. If you do, then you are ahead of the game!

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