How to Avoid These Common Customs Issues

a customs broker agency tablet on the table of an office


Goods can easily be rejected by the importer’s country for a variety of reasons. All it takes is one mistake and the item will immediately be sent back. For example, that country may have a ban on the items sent and perhaps you had no idea. In other cases, items are denied because they’re not labeled correctly. Whatever the reason, it can disrupt business and be costly.

Here are the most common customs issues and how you can avoid them:

  • Issue: Misclassification
  • Solution: Misclassification is perhaps the number one reason why packages are rejected. The receiving government will not accept goods that don’t correspond with the goods inside. Whether it’s the completely wrong item or an error in terms of the quantity. The specification must be completely correct otherwise you may be subject to a fine for false claims.
  • Issue: Duties are Higher
  • Solution: In the same sense as misclassification, duties must correspond with the receiving country’s regulations. For example, if the imported good is powdered milk and cooking oil, each item will need to match the country’s required duties, respectively. This leaves room for the speculation of customs fraud. When a party violates the classification of imports, this is known as the False Claims Act (FCA), which is defined as fraudulently misrepresenting the nature or physical characteristics of imported goods in order to pay a lower duty or tariff than owed. While that may not be the case, you will be held responsible for the error.
  • Issue: Items Arrived Damaged
  • Solution: If the items were in good condition when they were packed and sent off, the responsibility then falls on the shipper. The exporter will need to make arrangements to have the goods replaced. To minimize the risk of this happening to you, you must ensure the goods are correctly packaged and that the freight forward understands the best method of handling the goods.
  • Issue: Importer Cannot Pay
  • Solution: It’s possible for the importer to reject the goods because they can no longer pay. However, this can be avoided. Working with a customhouse will guarantee payment is arranged and if not, will request a trade complaint.

Guarantee a Successful Customs Transaction by Contacting RM Customhouse Today

Ensure a safe transaction by shipping your items with RM Customhouse in El Paso. We handle everything from the paperwork to inspection and ensuring proper transportation. It’s not always possible to be 100 percent versed in the U.S. and other nation’s regulations, which is why you can rely on us. Connect with us today to get started.