(December 12, 2017) provides a quick reminder of certain NAFTA certificate requirements.
The port denied the importer’s NAFTA claim because it found that the certificate unacceptable for three reasons. First, the period covered by the certificate was not stated. Second, the certificate did not provide the part number of the covered merchandise. Third, the certificate was not dated.
Despite these deficiencies, the Headquarters Office ruled that the importer has five days to present a signed certificate. The ruling holds that UPS tracking number on the certificate is sufficient to satisfy the requirements relating to the time period covered and the identity of the merchandise. The Headquarters Office said the tracking number was sufficient to establish that the certificate covered a single entry and provided the identity of the merchandise. In addition, the tracking number enabled CBP to verify that the importer had the certificate in its possession at the time of entry, a failure that could not be overlooked.
This is another instance where the Headquarters Office applied common sense to issues of this nature in contrast to the sometimes mechanical approach of the field.