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A change on ISF bonds… and eBonds coming soon

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

seal_acePer CSMS #14-000637, US Customs is eliminating the late ISF submission exemption from bond requirements:

“Effective January 10, 2015, late ISF submissions will no longer be exempt from the bond requirement and most ISF transactions will require a bond when they are filed.  To avoid delay or examination upon arrival, importers should ensure that bonds are in place to cover the ISF transaction prior to the cargo being loaded on the vessel destined for the United States.”

While this particular ISF bond exemption is going by the wayside (remaining are those for household goods, government and military, informal shipments and a handful of others), the impact on the trade will be insignificant.

First, as a practical matter, most importers already secure a single ISF transaction bond (or use an existing continuous bond) in these instances.  Moreover, CBP’s eBond functionality, schedule to debut on January 3, 2015, will begin to render the current single transaction bond procurement process moot, as e-Bond will allow for instantaneous filing and approval of bonds for importers who do not have one in place already.  Specifically, on that date:

For ACE Entries followed by ACE Entry Summaries, or ACE Entry Summaries certified for ACE Cargo Release, where a Single Transaction Bond is used, an eBond will be required.  ACE will implement validations on these inbound transactions where, if a bond is referenced on a transaction, and no bond is found on file in ACE, that transaction will be rejected.

For all other single transaction bond scenarios listed above utilizing the legacy ACS system, eBond will not be required. CBP will continue the paper processing of these bonds until ACS is retired and supplanted by ACE for all transactions in October 2016.  For more information, see US Customs’ November 2014 presentation, “e-Bond:  The Future of Bonds in ACE.”

But really, how will ACE work?

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014

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As mentioned in this blog previously, the first of the ACE deadlines are fast approaching.ACE Chart

Many in the trade still have fundamental questions about how ACE they will transact with ACE.  To address these concerns, US Customs’ ACEopedia (updated October 2014) provides a handy checklist (inset) to determine which part of ACE will handle a particular task.  According to CBP, there are two primary methods of interacting with ACE:

  1. Filing transactions via Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Interfaces:   With the exception of filing an electronic truck manifest and Importer Security Filing for low volume filers, EDI is the only mechanism through which transactions (entries, entry summaries, and ocean and rail manifests) can be filed in ACE.  [Note:  And by "EDI", CBP means the Automated Broker Interface, which self-filing importers and customs brokers currently use to file entries, ISFs, etc.  See our blog post on this topic.]
  2. Using the ACE Secure Data Portal:  
    The ACE portal is an online tool that allows users to file electronic truck manifests and run reports. ACE reports can be used to monitor compliance and daily operations.

Reminder:  Mandated use of certain ACE functionality will commence in May 2015 and mandated use of ACE for all trade processing will be required by October 2016.  Make sure now that your (or your broker’s) ABI software is ACE-certified to avoid any problems next year!

New ACE functionality deployed

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

seal_aceace deadlines

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As published in US Customs’ October 2014 ACE Monthly Trade update, CBP deployed new ACE functionality on October 18:

Cargo/Manifest/Entry Release Query

  • This query allows filers to request cargo, manifest and entry record status information that is on file in ACE

Export Manifest (Air Mode of Transportation)

  • This enhancement will provide for the filing and processing of Air Export Manifest transaction data in ACE. While technical capabilities have been deployed to production in ACE, this pilot has not yet been implemented. A Federal Register Notice on the initial pilot will be published in the near future.

Partner Government Agency (PGA) Message Set

  • CBP deployed capabilities to production to allow agencies to initiate additional PGA Message Set pilots with trade filers. Many of the PGAs have established working groups with trade representatives to identify requirements for these pilots.

Reminder:  Mandated use of certain ACE functionality will commence in May 2015 and mandated use of ACE for all trade processing will be required by October 2016.  Make sure now that your (or your broker’s) ABI software is ACE-certified to avoid any problems next year!

Register for AAEI’s ACE webinar series

Friday, October 10th, 2014

 

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Starting October 22, AAEI will host a series of four webinars to bring the trade up to speed on different aspects of ACE.  Register at the links below.  AAEI notes that non-member registration will be limited, so act quickly.

ACE Webinar Part One: ” ACE, a Transaction Review”

On October 22 at 1:00 p.m EST, Melissa Irmen of Integration Point will be moderating “ACE, A Transaction Review,” where she will be leading a panel that will include the review of an ACE transaction from both a service provider and an Importer/Exporter perspective.  This webinar will walk through an ACE transaction, including information on pitfalls and best practices.


ACE Webinar Part Two: “Ace 101″

On October 24 at 2:00 p.m EST, Cindy Allen of DHL and Amy Magnus of A.N Deringer will present “ACE 101″, a primer on ACE.  As we get closer to the drop dead date of full ACE implementation in November 2015, we want to make sure that everyone has a solid foundation of where ACE is, where ACE is going, and how ACE affects your business.


ACE Webinar Part Three: “ACE, A Guided Discussion”

On October 29 at 1:00 p.m. EST, Beth Peterson of BPE Global will be moderating “ACE, A Guided Discussion”, a panel featuring a guided discussion with CBP, FDA, a local Port representative, and an Importer/Exporter.


ACE Webinar Part Four: “ACE and the PGA’s”

On November 5 at 1:00 p.m. EST, Jim Phillips of GM will moderate our final ACE panel, “ACE and the PGA’s” featuring a discussion of ACE from a PGA perspective.

 
 
 
 
Be sure to register today!
 
*Non-Member registration is limited.
*All registrations are pending AAEI approval

Basics of ACE on one page

Monday, October 6th, 2014

If you’ve somehow missed out on US Customs’ ACE updates in the last few years, here’s a handy graphic from CBP that provides a high-level overview to bring you up to speed.  Note the upcoming ACE deadlines, the first of which is less than 7 months away.  Make sure your current ABI software (or your broker’s) is ACE-compliant.

ACE Basics Graphic

 

ACE eBonds coming in January!

Monday, September 8th, 2014

seal_aceIn the August 2014 ACE Monthly Trade Update, US Customs announced that it will deploy electronic bond functionality in ACE on January 3, 2015.   This will enable the trade to submit, via EDI, bond transactions in ACE, which will “will streamline the process for filing continuous and single transaction bonds with CBP Revenue Division’s Bond Team.”

Benefits will include:

  • Creation of a single mechanism for the centralization of bonds, including a single place to locate any bond starting after ACE eBond deployment.
  • Reduction in paper processing
  • Faster release of cargo
  • Increased traceability of bonds for audit purposes
  • Expansion of bond issuance beyond regular business hours

At this time, ACE eBond will be required for ACE cargo release and entry summary transactions only, not for those filed in ACS.  However, as of November 1, 2015, when use of ACE will be mandatory for all electronic cargo release and related entry summary filings, ACE eBond must be used for all such transactions.

 

The latest on ACE

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

seal_aceHighlights from US Customs’ July 2014 ACE Monthly Trade Update:

The July 2014 ACE  update is available here.

 

CBP to add more entry summary validations (edits) to ACE

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

seal_aceUS Customs continues to make great strides on ACE.  The latest update to ACE will include new entry summary edits (validations) for informal restrictions, taxes, other fees and charges restrictions.  See CSMS #14-000327 for more details.

A reminder:

  • May 1, 2015: Mandatory use of ACE for all electronic manifest filing – less than 11 months to go!
  • November 1, 2015: Mandatory use of ACE for all electronic cargo release and related entry summary filings
  • October 1, 2016: Mandatory use of ACE for all remaining electronic portions of the CBP cargo process

US importers — make sure that your software (if you’re self-filing) or your broker’s is ACE-certified.  Do it now in advance of these deadlines to ensure uninterrupted cargo clearance.

Take CBP’s ACE satisfaction survey by May 23

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

surveyUS Customs is seeking input from the trade about the benefits and problems experienced with ACE.  In particular, CBP is inviting those who are employed as or by a broker, importer, or a land border, ocean, or rail carrier with an ACE portal account for their feedback on ACE for the 2013 calendar year.

New to the survey this year is a request that broker and self-filing importer respondents provide cost and time saving information for:

The last day to take the survey is May 23, and all responses will be anonymous.  For more information and to access the survey, visit US Customs’ official survey announcement page.


				

ACE Cargo Release pilot to include truck shipments

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

tractor-trailer-convoyUS Customs has announced the expansion of the ongoing ACE Cargo Release pilot program (Simplified Entry test) to include cargo transported by truck.

Applicants who wish to participate are limited to self-filing importers who use an ACE-certified, CBP-approved ABI system to file entries (or intend to do so), or importers using a customs broker who has capabilities to file entry summaries in ACE.  Applicants must have a filer code, and must intend to submit data only for entries filed at ports approved for the pilot.

The expansion of the pilot to the truck mode of transportation will provide for automated corrections and cancellations as well as entry for a full manifest bill quantity.  However, this phase of the test will not include split shipments, partial shipment, in-bond shipments and entries requiring PGA information.  In addition, the test is limited to filing type 01 and 11 entries only.

For more details, see the official Federal Register announcement.