What happens when your car gets inspected by US customs

US Dept of Homeland Security No matter what country you are shipping a car to, it will have to pass US Customs. Passing US Customs is normally not an issue, but what happens when your container shipment is randomly selected for inspection? Or what if there are a group of containers suspected of illegal goods? As an international car shipping company, our customers have to occasionally deal with US Customs.

There is a 5% chance that USA Customs may prevent a container from being loaded. When they have a suspicion that the container has illegal goods inside of it, or there is something amiss with the container that has not been properly declared, they will withdraw the container from the port and take it to an inspection facility where the container will be unloaded and inspected.If there are illegal goods in the container those goods will be confiscated, but if all is found to be in order, then the container is re-loaded and taken to the port for loading onto the next available vessel. Unfortunately a US Customs vehicle inspection causes delays.

The charges for re-loading and travelling expenses are unfortunately borne by the owner of the container. In other words that person will be responsible for all costs incurred by the trucker and the inspecting facility. It is rather unfair, but it happens and there is very little we can do about it.

Container ships usually have this problem. Unlike container shipping, Roll on Roll off (RoRo) shipments do not have this problem as the vehicle is easily seen and there are no up and down expenses incurred.

Download this doc provided by US Customs Exporting a Vehicle from USA

This guide was developed as a single source of guidance for shippers and exporters on the proper procedures required for the exportation of used self-propelled motor vehicles presented for export, along with their accompanying documentation.

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