How to Clear Customs into Canada and How a Customs Broker Can Help

Customs is the process by which the Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) and affiliated agencies which is responsible for enforcing Canada’s import and export laws. For example, the application of taxes and duties, review of products which are forbidden to exit or enter Canada, holding periods, and the transit of goods through Canada to their final destinations.

To clear customs in Canada, you need to be familiar with these six steps:

1. Preparing your import;
2. Identifying your goods;
3. Ascertaining duties and taxes;
4. Shipping, examining, and reporting your goods;
5. Getting your products released; and
6. Record keeping after goods is released.

Preparing to Import

To import your goods, you must obtain a business number from the CBSA which will allow you to pay the duties and taxes. Next and identify the goods you want to import, including the country of origin – which impacts the taxes, and which also informs you whether Canada even allows your good to enter. Finally, ascertain if your goods are subject to any restrictions or regulations.

At this point, you can hire a customs broker in Canada. Customs brokers in Canada can help you clear customs by advising you on your goods, identifying the duties, and ascertaining if any special paperwork is required. They handle the customs process, so you don’t have to. Second, you need to classify your goods. You know what you’re importing, but the CBSA doesn’t. the CBSA uses a 10-digit tariff classification system which tells the CBSA all of the above information. Third, you need to calculate your duties and taxes, which you a customs broker in Canada can help you with.

Next, you ship your goods. Make sure that you report your goods once they are prepared for shipping. The fifth step is getting your goods released, which requires submitting proof of payment of applicable duties and taxes and clearing any other issues (such as special exemptions, etc.).

Remember, the CBSA can verify your importations, so you need to keep all your paperwork for at least six years and make sure it is accurate, so if you see any errors - correct them.

ARGO Customs Brokers Are Here To Help

ARGO Customs Brokers are positioned at all major ports of entry. ARGO Customs Brokers are ready and happy to assist with your food importations and licensing.