On March 19, 2020, the Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) released Customs Notice 20-10 “Waiver of Late accounting Penalties”  granting relief during the COVID-19 crisis.  The notice provides that certain late fees (also known as administrative monetary penalties (“AMPs”)) and late accounting penalties are being waived for transactions released between March 11, 2020, to May 14, 2020, inclusively.  It is important to get commercial goods across the border and truckers/carriers are not going to be penalized with monetary penalties if their paperwork is not filed in time.

Customs Notice 20-10 sets out the following:

1. This notice provides information regarding late accounting penalties (LAP).

2. As per the Accounting for Imported Goods and Payment of Duties Regulations, importers are required to submit accounting declarations for imported goods released on minimum documentation within the required time frames. Late accounting penalties are applied when these timelines are not met.

3. Section 3.3 of the Customs Act provides authority to the Minister or a delegated official to waive penalties or interest payable under the Act under certain circumstances.

4. The World Health Organization characterized the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as a pandemic on March 11, 2020.

5. The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) recognizes that the impact of this pandemic may result in difficulties with submitting a timely accounting for imported goods.

6. As such, the CBSA has decided to provide for a 45 business days grace period for late accounting penalties. Clients will not have to submit an application to have late accounting penalties waived. This applies to transactions released from March 11, 2020, to May 14, 2020, inclusively.

7. The grace period will be subject to review as the situation evolves, in which case an update to this notice will be issued.

8. For any questions, please contact CBSA.External_Appeals-Appels_Externes.ASFC@cbsa-asfc.gc.ca.