FAQs About the New Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA)

With the arrival of the new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA), our team at ARGO Customs knows that there are many questions and uncertainties that need to be addressed regarding this agreement. So, we decided to put together and answer some frequently asked questions to help you understand CUSMA and some of the new processes and regulations it is bringing.

ARGO Customs Answers Important Questions About CUSMA

  • When will CUSMA start?

Beginning on July 1, 2020, the implantation of CUSMA will begin. For goods that are released after or on this date, they will be subject to these new tariffs. So, be prepared for these new processes and changes.

  • Will NAFTA goods originate under the CUSMA?

There is no definite answer to this question. You must review the new CUSMA regulations to learn more about if the goods in question originate under CUSMA’s new agreement. As always, our customs brokers can help answer any questions or concerns you have with CUSMA and other importing and exporting rules/laws, so never hesitate to contact us when you need to.

  • Will I need a certificate of origin for CUSMA goods?

You will not require a certificate of origin for things that have a value of $3,300.00 and above. With that being said, you will need certification of origin – as is standard for many new trade deals. Keep in mind that similar to NAFTA, it doesn’t need to be shown when it is being released and the certification can go along with any document.

The certification of origin may be completed by the importer, exporter, or the producer.

  • Can an importer sign for the CUSMA certification?

Yes, an importer can sign the CUSMA certification of origin.

  • For goods valued at $3,330 and under, will certification or a statement be needed for these items?

Beginning on July 1, the LVS threshold will take effect. In a situation where goods estimated at $3,300 and less are from a country that already has a Free Trade Agreement with Canada, there will be no need to show a certificate of origin or statement.

  • For LVS Shipments that now need a certificate of origin, are “made in” stickers/stamps enough to get favored treatment?

For normal and causal products, yes, a simple “made in” symbol or marking should be sufficient. But for commercial goods, if there were to be an audit the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has the right to be shown proof of origin. It is recommended to always get confirmation of where the goods originate from the client.

  • For CUSMA goods, are there any tariff treatment codes to be aware of?

For goods that are imported into Canada, yes, there are two possible codes to be aware of; 10 is for goods from America, while 11 are goods that originate from Mexico. Unlike with NAFTA, goods that originate from both Mexico and the USA, no longer have a treatment code.

  • For CUSMA goods, exactly how many origin criteria are there?

Per CUSMA Article 4.2, there are four. Please refer to the CUSMA agreement (Article 4.2) and contact our ARGO Customs team for further information and details regarding this or any other question.

  • Do I need TPL Certificates of Eligibility?

As it stands now, there are no changes to TPL Certificates of Eligibility on imports. Please keep in mind that they are needed for goods from Mexico.

  • Can I leave the importer information on certification of origin empty?

No, you cannot leave the importer information unfilled. If the importer is not known, under data element 5 you can use “unknown.” When there are a large number of importers (blanked certificate) you can let them know to see the included list – this was also the case for NAFTA.

For non-residents importers (NRI), you can provide the full name of the importer, the Canadian address of where the goods are going/importing to, along with a phone number and email address.

  • For goods billed at the most-favored-nation (MFN) rate, but actually originate under the CUSMA, can there be a refund?

If it is later found that the goods indeed originated under the CUSMA, yes, a refund will be given. You can file under Section 74(c)(ii) of the Customs Act in situations like these.

You must file the claim within four years from the exact date of accounting.

  • Will there be an update to D11-4-32 Application of the De Minimis Provision to Textile and Apparel Goods under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) by the CBSA?

No, the Canadian Border Services Agency will not be changing this. You can attain further information about this by referencing the CUSMA Rules of Origin Uniform Regulations.

ARGO Customs Brokers

At ARGO Customs, we can help simplify your Canadian Customs clearance process by utilizing our cutting-edge customs software, along with our vast experience in dealing with importing and exporting goods. Our team can provide the customs assistance and clearance solutions you need to streamline your shipments, avoid delays, issues, and the possibility of fines and unnecessary tariffs.

To learn more about CUSMA and Canadian importing and exporting, please contact our brokers at ARGO Customs today.