What does a Custom Broker do?

Prepare customs documentation and ensure that shipments meet all applicable laws to facilitate the import and export of goods. Determine and track duties and taxes payable and process payments on behalf of client. Sign documents under a power of attorney. Represent clients in meetings with customs officials and apply for duty refunds and tariff reclassifications. Coordinate transportation and storage of imported goods.

Jobs Roles

  • Sign documents on behalf of clients, using powers of attorney.
  • Provide advice on transportation options, types of carriers, or shipping routes.
  • Post bonds for the products being imported or assist clients in obtaining bonds.
  • Insure cargo against loss, damage, or pilferage.
  • Obtain line releases for frequent shippers of low-risk commodities, high-volume entries, or multiple-container loads.
  • Contract with freight forwarders for destination services.
  • Arrange for transportation, warehousing, or product distribution of imported or exported products.
  • Suggest best methods of packaging or labeling products.
  • Request or compile necessary import documentation, such as customs invoices, certificates of origin, and cargo-control documents.
  • Stay abreast of changes in import or export laws or regulations by reading current literature, attending meetings or conferences, or conferring with colleagues.
  • Quote duty and tax rates on goods to be imported, based on federal tariffs and excise taxes.
  • Prepare papers for shippers to appeal duty charges.
  • Pay, or arrange for payment of, taxes and duties on shipments.
  • Monitor or trace the location of goods.
  • Maintain relationships with customs brokers in other ports to expedite clearing of cargo.
  • Inform importers and exporters of steps to reduce duties and taxes.
  • Confer with officials in various agencies to facilitate clearance of goods through customs and quarantine.
  • Classify goods according to tariff coding system.
  • Calculate duty and tariff payments owed on shipments.
  • Apply for tariff concessions or for duty drawbacks and other refunds.
  • Advise customers on import and export restrictions, tariff systems, insurance requirements, quotas, or other customs-related matters.
  • Prepare and process import and export documentation according to customs regulations, laws, or procedures.
  • Clear goods through customs and to their destinations for clients.
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