Import / Export Management Service

What is an Importer Security Filing?

Importer Security Filing (10+2)

Under the new rule, before merchandise arriving by vessel can be imported into the United States, the “Importer Security Filing (ISF) Importer,” or their agent (e.g., licensed customs broker), must electronically submit certain advance cargo information to CBP in the form of an Importer Security Filing. This requirement only applies to cargo arriving in the United States by ocean vessel; it does not apply to cargo arriving by other modes of transportation.


When importing cargo to the U.S. via ocean vessel, the CBP requires that cargo to be registered on both the export and import sides by way of ISF Filing. This is a required step for the purpose of pre-screening all incoming goods as part of Homeland Security measures.


All ISF filings are required to be completed, even when done late, or if the cargo has already arrived. Failure to do so may result in fines and delays, as well as costly intensive examinations. The federal government has instituted penalties for late ISF filing at $5,000 per instance, and a total of $10,000 per shipment if there are multiple offenses per shipment.


CBP Requirements for ISF Filings:


1. Seller: Legal Name and Address of the Seller, which would be an overseas entity who has sold the goods to the Buyer.


2. Buyer: Legal Name and Address of the Buyer, who has made financial payment for the goods to the Seller. (This may be the same entity as the Importer of Record).


3. Importer of Record: IRS-issued Employer Identification Number (EIN), Social Security Number (SSN), or Customs-assigned Importer number. This is the designated entity who will be responsible for payment of all CBP duties. The Importer of Record is also responsible for complying with all mandatory statues and regulations which may be imposed.


4. Consignee: Full legal Name and Physical address of the Importer Individual or Business under which the cargo is imported.


5. Ship to Party: Full legal Name and Physical Address to which the goods will go upon release from Customs.


6. Manufacturer: Legal Name and Address of the entity which performed final manufacturing, assembly, production, or growing of the commodity.


7. Country of Origin: Country where the product was manufactured, produced, or grown, in keeping with U.S. regulations, rules and import laws.


8. Harmonized Tariff Schedule Number: HTS Number. The product classification under the USHTS system, which codifies all imported goods and determines the import duty rate, as well as any special requirements that may be applicable.


9. Container Stuffing Location: Legal Name and Address(es) of the physical location(s) where the goods were loaded into the container for transport.


10. Consolidator: Legal Name and Address of the party who loaded the container or arranged for the loading of the container.


11. Vessel Sailing Information: Bill of Lading Number, which tethers a shipment with ISF information submitted to CBP, is also necessary as an additional element to ISF Filing.


12. Carrier-Provided Information:


      1. Vessel Stow Plan

      2. Container Status Message



CBP - ISF Brochure


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