Settling into TFTEA drawback

In a recent article for American Shipper, Michael Cerny, chief legal officer for Charter Brokerage, explains how filing for a duty refund with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has become more efficient as filers become more familiar with the types of duty drawback and the new requirements for filing claims electronically. “We are seeing drawback for commodities/products where we did not see it before,” said Cerny. “No question that during that first year, issues cropped up with particular validations or data processing that resulted in CBP updating and fixing bugs and filers addressing issues in their own software programs.”.

Michael V. Cerny Joins Charter Brokerage

Charter Brokerage LLC announced today that Michael V. Cerny has joined Charter as Chief Legal Officer. Bobby Waid, CEO of Charter Brokerage said, “Michael is an acknowledged expert in many areas of Customs, in particular duty drawback. I had the privilege of working with Michael and the Trade Support Network (TSN), legislators and staffers over a ten-year period to develop and gain passage of key drawback modernization provisions in the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015. Michael is an excellent addition to Charter Brokerage, and we look forward to adding his expertise in duty drawback to our team.”

ACE Drawback and the Harbor Maintenance Tax

Despite unease over Trump’s section 301 tariff disputes between the United States and China, Charter Brokerage is still successfully finding drawback refunds for their clients. Though some companies are hesitant to invest in an overall environment of uncertainty, Charter is ever aware of changing trade policies and still taking advantage of drawback opportunities. The Quarterly Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT) is one example of how Charter uses their expertise in drawback procedure to stay ahead of other providers. The HMT is designed to pay for harbor maintenance and development. Also known as the Harbor Maintenance Fee (HMF), it is a quarterly assessment on imports, domestic shipments, Foreign Trade Zone admissions (FTZ), and even passengers. Though other drawback service experts have found barriers with claiming drawback on HMT, Charter has been able to leverage their extensive knowledge of duty drawback laws and the industry to allow their clients to claim these additional refunds.

Court of International Trade Orders Treasury and CBP to Issue TFTEA Drawback Final Regulations

On October 12, Judge Restani of the Court of International Trade (“CIT”) issued Slip Opinion 18-138 in the case of Tabacos de Wilson, et al v. Mnuchin et al. This Opinion also contains an Order that on or before December 17, 2018, Treasury and CBP shall file the final rule for Modernized Drawback with the Office of the Federal Register. This action by the Judiciary is a significant validation of Charter’s position that Treasury and CBP had violated the clear intent of Congress by withholding these regulations.