Importer Security Filing (ISF) Enforcement to Tighten June 30


CBP, at the respective cargo discharge port, will no longer be required to send requests for liquidated damage (LD) claims (i.e. penalties for late or inaccurate ISF filings, up to $10,000 per shipment)  to CBP Headquarters for review. The ports are now free to issue LD claims at their discretion.

The “3 strikes” approach to enforcement, whereby LD claims in most cases were not issued until the fourth violation, and warnings on the first 3 violations were sent to the importer, will no longer be in effect. CBP, at the respective discharge port, is now free to issue LD claims at their discretion and claims may be issued on a first and any subsequent violation.

Cargo will continue to be placed on hold at the port of discharge whenever an ISF is discovered to not be on file. This may result in cargo transit delays, additional charges  for related exams, terminal storage, or equipment per diem.

Further to the above enforcement updates we do understand CBP Headquarter internal policy and guidance to the discharge ports as follows.

  • The Statute of limitation for ISF violations remains 6 years but LD claims should be filed by CBP within 90 days of the ISF violation.
  • CBP will continue to focus on “significantly” late ISF filings that preclude or compromise CBP’s ability to target  the cargo before it arrives to the U.S.. CBP typically targets cargo (i.e. reviews the vessel manifest record) 3 to 5 days prior to arrival at the U.S. port of discharge.
  • We expect CBP to focus on repeat violators.

Importers are legally responsible for the accuracy and timeliness of their ISF filings, regardless of whether a customs broker or other intermediary does the actual filing.

We encourage you to be familiar with and engaged in your ISF filing process. Rohlig is here to assist you with this process. Please reach out to your customer service or sales representative with any questions or concerns you may have.


Rohlig USA LLC