In July, 2017, the Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) released “Tariff Compliance Verifications – July 2017”.  What are “Tariff Compliance Verifications”? Tariff compliance verifications are CBSA customs audits during which the CBSA ensures that importers are using the proper tariff classification (HS Code) numbers when completing import documentation. If you are making mistakes, the CBSA lets you know it with an assessment or a request to file a B2 Adjustment Request covering a period of one year or more.  In all likelihood, you will have to pay more duties and an administrative monetary penalty.

The Tariff Compliance Verifications – July 2017 identifies tariff classification, origin and valuation targets of the CBSA for the random and mandatory verifications that will take place in the second half of 2017.  There will still be other verifications of importers of other “not listed” imported goods.  However, the document released by the CBSA is a “heads up” to importers and a “helpful” nudge to review one’s import paperwork carefully.

In this document, the CBSA provides useful information that helps importers assess their risk of a reassessment.  The CBSA indicates which verification targets were previously listed by them and the compliance rates discovered by the CBSA.  The CBSA also states the amount of money the CBSA has collected in respect to the targeted items.

Any importer who imports a targeted item could be the subject of a verification audit by the CBSA.  If the CBSA finds non-compliance, the importer will be assessed duties, taxes and possibly administrative monetary penalties.  For this reason, if you import one of the listed items, review your paperwork and make corrections before the CBSA calls.

The listed tariff classification trade compliance priorities in alphabetical order are:

  • air brakes and parts thereof (HS Code Subheading 8607.21)
  • articles of apparel and clothing (HS Code Heading 39.26)
  • articles of plastics (HS Subheading 3926)
  • batteries (HS Codes 98506.10.10 and 8506.50.10)
  • bicycle parts (HS Code Heading 87.14)
  • castors with mountings of base metal (Heading 83.02 and HS Code 8716.90.99) (new)
  • cell phone cases (HS Code Headings 39.26, 42.02, and 85.17)
  • cereals (HS Code Heading 10.08)
  • chemical products (HS Code Heading 38.08)
  • curling irons (HS Code 8516.32.90)
  • dexatrins and other modified starches (HS Codes 17.02, 21.06, 35.05, and 38.24)
  • disposable and protective gloves (HS Codes 3926.20.10 and 4015.19.10, 48.18, 62.10 and 63.07)
  • footwear (HS Code 6403)
  • furniture for non-domestic purposes (H.S. Codes Headings 94.01 and 94.03)
  • geophysical and oceanographic instruments (HS Code Heading 90.15)
  • hair dryers and electric smoldering irons (HS Code Heading 85.16)
  • hair extensions (HS Code 67.03 and 67.04)
  • handkerchiefs, towels and related paper products (HS Code Heading 48.18)
  • interchangeable tools (HS Code Heading 82.07)
  • live plants (HS Code Heading 16.02)
  • mountings, fittings and similar articles (HS Code Heading 83.02)
  • nails a similar articles of iron or steel (Heading 73.17, (new)
  • parts for power trains (HS Code Heading 87.08)
  • parts for use with machinery of Chapter 84 (HS Code Heading 84.31)
  • parts of lamps (HS Code Heading 94.05)
  • pasta (HS Code Heading 19.02)
  • photographic film (HS Code Heading 37.02)
  • pickled vegetables (HS Code Heading 20.01 and 2005)
  • prepared meat of swine (HS Code Heading 16.02)
  • olive oil (HS Code Heading 15.09 or 15.10, or 1517.90.99)
  • railway equipment (HS Code Heading 86.08)
  • sacks and bags under tariff item 9903.00.00
  • sausages and similar products (HS Code Heading 16.01)
  • special purpose motor vehicles (HS Code Heading 87.05)
  • seaweed (HS Codes 2008.99.90.99)
  • spectacle lenses (HS Code Heading 90.01)
  • stone blocks and slabs (HS Code 25.14, 25.15, 25.16)
  • stone table and countertops (HS Code Heading 68.02)
  • tubes, pipes and hoses (HS Code Heading 39.17)
  • vices and clamps (HS Code Heading 82.05)
  • Yeasts and other micro-organisms (HS Code Heading 21.02) (new)

The listed valuation trade compliance priorities are:

  • apparel (HS Chapters 61 and 62)

The listed origin trade compliance priorities are:

  • t-shirts (HS Code Heading 61.09)
  • jewelry (HS Chapter 71)

Consider whether you are at risk of a verification letter from the CBSA and whether you may benefit from making a voluntary correction or voluntary disclosure.

For more information, please contact Cyndee Todgham Cherniak at 416-307-4168 or at Alternatively, visit