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On Friday August 20, 2021, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) sent out Cargo Systems Messaging Service CSMS #49132200 which provided guidance to importers and brokers regarding Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) subheading 9801.00.10 for U.S. and Foreign Goods Returned.  

Subheading 9801.00.10

Products of the United States when returned after having been exported, or any other products when returned within 3 years after having been exported, without having been advanced in value or improved in condition by any process of manufacture or other means while abroad:

  • US Goods – No time limit for return to qualify
  • Foreign Goods – 3 year time limit from date of export for return to qualify


The CSMS message reminds importers of the burden of proof that they must meet with this claim for duty-free treatment under subheading 9801.00.10. Customs is pushing for a regulatory change within 19 CFR 10.1 to align with the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act (TFTEA). In the meantime, CBP has provided the following guidance of what may be requested for Importers to meet the burden of proof requirement.

  1. Required Declarations: For either U.S. origin goods or foreign origin goods:
    1. Foreign Shipper Declaration – indicates that the products were not advanced in value or improved in condition while outside the United States. A certification from the master of a vessel stating that the products are returned without having been un-laden from the exporting vessel may be accepted in lieu of this declaration by the foreign shipper for instances where the cargo remained in control by the carrier and were never imported into the foreign country.
    2. Importer Declaration – indicates that the foreign shipper declaration is true and provides the facts of the shipment by identifying who manufactured the goods. 19 CFR 10.1 has an example of what the importer declaration should look like. If the importer or owner or ultimate consignee is a corporation, the declaration must be signed by the president, vice president, secretary, or treasurer of the corporation, or may be signed by an employee or agent of the corporation who holds a power of attorney and a certification by the corporation that such employee or other agent has or will have knowledge of the pertinent facts.
  2. Additional Verification of Origin: For U.S. manufactured goods valued over $2,500 entered three years after the date of exportation that are not clearly marked with the name and address of the U.S. manufacturer, CBP may require, in addition to the declarations above, additional documents to substantiate the claim for duty-free treatment including a statement from the U.S. manufacturer verifying that the articles were made in the United States.
  3. Proof of Export: One of the following documents will be deemed sufficient proof of export from the United States for U.S. manufactured goods or foreign origin goods, provided the information contained therein proves an export from the United States:
    1. Copy of the entry into the foreign country.
    2. U.S. export invoice or bill of lading/airway bill; orc. Electronic Export Information (EEI) or the Automated Export System (AES) filing exemption.
    3. Documentation may be requested to substantiate that the same articles exported from the United States are being returned. No substitution of the same type of articles under an inventory management system may occur. This merchandise must meet all of the requirements such that it was not advanced in value or changed in condition, and not processed under a drawback claim or Temporary Importation under Bond (TIB) entry.
  4. Aircraft or Aircraft Parts: For aircraft and aircraft parts and equipment returned to the United States by or for the account of an aircraft owner or operator and intended for use in his own aircraft operations, within or outside the United States, a CBP Form 3311, or its electronic equivalent, may be used as stated in 19 CFR 10.1. The entrant must show on Customs Form 3311 or its electronic equivalent:
    1. The name of the importing vessel or conveyance,
    2. The date of its arrival,
    3. A description of the articles,
    4. The value of the articles, and
    5. That the articles are intended for use by the aircraft owner or operator in his own aircraft operations.
  5. Department of State License: For U.S. origin goods that were originally exported under a Department of State license that are now being re-imported, formal entry is required regardless of value along with the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) Partnership Government Agency (PGA) message set.
  6. Foreign Military Aircraft Sales Returned for Maintenance: For U.S. manufactured aircraft returning to the United States that were sold to a foreign government under the Foreign Military Sales Program, formal entry is required if any maintenance is being performed on the aircraft while in the United States. The repairs must be authorized via a specific case line in the Letter of Offer and Acceptance (LOA). The LOA is the sales agreement between the United States and the foreign government regarding the sale of munitions and other articles to the foreign government.
    1. At the time of export of the aircraft, the EEI must be filed for the maintenance of the aircraft.
  7. Foreign Military Aircraft Sales Returned for Modification: For U.S. manufactured aircraft returning to the United States that were sold to a foreign government under the Foreign Military Sales program where modifications or enhancements will be made to the aircraft, the following is required for the import and subsequent export of the aircraft:
    1. Formal entry is required.
    2. At the time of export, the EEI submission is required, citing the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls export license (DSP-5).


The CSMS message also reminds brokers of their “Responsible Supervision and Control” obligations when making entries as the agent for the importer. Brokers are reminded to communicate with the importers on what is required to make duty free claims under subheading 9801.00.10.

CBP noted that the Centers for Excellence and Expertise will continue to use risk management in reviewing formal entry claims under subheading 9801.00.10 and has advised that trade to contact Ms. Kellee Gross, Policy Branch Chief, Commercial Operations, Revenue and Entry at with any questions.

If you have any questions, please contact your local Noatum Logistics representative.