Saturday, January 24, 2015

No License, No Brokerage

United States v. Freight Forwarder International, Inc. is another recent decision I can dispose of quickly.

Here's the deal. A freight forwarder that employs a licensed customs broker but does not hold a corporate license cannot legally engage in customs business. 19 USC 1641(b)(5) and 19 CFR 111.4. In this case, the defendant paid customs duties to Customs and Border Protection on behalf of importers and invoiced the importer. That is transacting customs business. CBP sought a penalty of $10,000 and the defendant failed to respond.

What follows in the reported decision is the Court of International Trade essentially ticking off the boxes showing that the United States has taken the necessary administrative and litigation steps necessary to collect a default judgment. Not surprisingly, the United States Department of Justice did just that and the Court entered a default judgment of $10,000 against the defendant.

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