U.S Code last checked for updates: Jan 04, 2022
§ 1508.
Recordkeeping
(a)
Requirements
Any—
(1)
owner, importer, consignee, importer of record, entry filer, or other party who—
(A)
imports merchandise into the customs territory of the United States, files a drawback claim, or transports or stores merchandise carried or held under bond, or
(B)
knowingly causes the importation or transportation or storage of merchandise carried or held under bond into or from the customs territory of the United States;
(2)
agent of any party described in paragraph (1); or
(3)
person whose activities require the filing of a declaration or entry, or both;
shall make, keep, and render for examination and inspection records (which for purposes of this section include, but are not limited to, statements, declarations, documents and electronically generated or machine readable data) which—
(A)
pertain to any such activity, or to the information contained in the records required by this chapter in connection with any such activity; and
(B)
are normally kept in the ordinary course of business.
(b)
Exports and imports relating to USMCA countries
(1)
Definitions
In this subsection:
(A)
USMCA; USMCA country

The terms “USMCA” and “USMCA country” have the meanings given those terms in section 4502 of this title.

(B)
USMCA certification of origin

The term “USMCA certification of origin” means the certification established under article 5.2.1 of the USMCA that a good qualifies as an originating good under the USMCA.

(2)
Exports to USMCA countries
Any person who completes a USMCA certification of origin or provides a written representation for a good exported from the United States to a USMCA country shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection, all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof), including records related to—
(A)
the purchase, cost, value, and shipping of, and payment for, the good;
(B)
the purchase, cost, value, and shipping of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and
(C)
the production of the good in the form in which it was exported or the production of the material in the form in which it was sold.
(3)
Exports under the Canadian Agreement

Any person who exports, or who knowingly causes to be exported, any merchandise to Canada during such time as the United States-Canada Free-Trade Agreement is in force with respect to, and the United States applies that Agreement to, Canada shall make, keep, and render for examination and inspection such records (including certifications of origin or copies thereof) which pertain to the exportations.

(4)
Imports into the United States
(A)
In general
Any importer who claims preferential tariff treatment under the USMCA for a good imported into the United States from a USMCA country shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury of the Secretary of Labor, render for examination and inspection—
(i)
records and supporting documentation related to the importation;
(ii)
all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof), if the importer completed the certification; and
(iii)
records and supporting documents necessary to demonstrate that the good did not, while in transit to the United States, undergo further production or any other operation other than unloading, reloading, or any other operation necessary to preserve the good in good condition or to transport the good to the United States.
(B)
Vehicle producer

Any vehicle producer whose good is the subject of a claim for preferential tariff treatment under the USMCA shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury and Secretary of Labor, render for examination and inspection records and supporting documents related to the labor value content and steel and aluminum purchasing requirements for the qualification of its vehicles for preferential treatment.

(5)
Retention period
(A)
Exports to USMCA countries

A person covered by paragraph (2) who completes a USMCA certification of origin or provides a written representation for a good exported from the United States to a USMCA country shall keep the records required by such paragraph relating to that certification of origin for a period of at least 5 years after the date on which the certification is completed.

(B)
Exports under Canadian Agreement
The records required by paragraph (3) shall be kept for such periods of time as the Secretary shall prescribe, except that—
(i)
no period of time for the retention of the records may exceed 5 years from the date of entry, filing of a reconciliation, or exportation, as appropriate; and
(ii)
records for any drawback claim shall be kept until the third anniversary of the date of liquidation of the claim.
(C)
Imports into the United States
(i)
In general

An importer covered by paragraph (4)(A) shall keep the records and supporting documents required by such paragraph for a period of at least 5 years after the date of importation of the good.

(ii)
Vehicle producer

A vehicle producer covered by paragraph (4)(B) shall keep the records and supporting documents required by paragraph (4)(B) for a period of at least 5 years after the date of filing the certifications required under paragraphs (1) and (2) of section 4532(c) of this title.

(c)
Period of time
The records required by subsection (a) shall be kept for such periods of time as the Secretary shall prescribe, except that—
(1)
no period of time for the retention of the records required under subsection (a) may exceed 5 years from the date of entry, filing of a reconciliation, or exportation, as appropriate; and
(2)
records for any drawback claim shall be kept until the 3rd anniversary of the date of liquidation of the claim.
(d)
Limitation
For the purposes of this section and section 1509 of this title, a person ordering merchandise from an importer in a domestic transaction does not knowingly cause merchandise to be imported unless—
(1)
the terms and conditions of the importation are controlled by the person placing the order; or
(2)
(e)
Subsection (b) penalties
(1)
Relating to USMCA exports
Any person who fails to retain records required by paragraph (2) of subsection (b) or the regulations issued to implement that paragraph shall be liable for—
(A)
a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000; or
(B)
the general recordkeeping penalty that applies under the customs laws;
whichever penalty is higher.
(2)
Relating to Canadian agreement exports

Any person who fails to retain the records required by paragraph (3) of subsection (b) or the regulations issued to implement that paragraph shall be liable for a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000.

(f)
Certificates of Origin for goods exported under the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement
(1)
Definitions
In this subsection:
(A)
Records and supporting documents
The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—
(i)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;
(ii)
if applicable, the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including recovered goods, used in the production of the good; and
(iii)
if applicable, the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.
(B)
Chile FTA Certificate of Origin

The term “Chile FTA Certificate of Origin” means the certification, established under article 4.13 of the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement, that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2)
Exports to Chile

Any person who completes and issues a Chile FTA Certificate of Origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the Certificate or copies thereof).

(3)
Retention period

Records and supporting documents shall be kept by the person who issued a Chile FTA Certificate of Origin for at least 5 years after the date on which the certificate was issued.

(g)
Certifications of origin for goods exported under the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement
(1)
Definitions
In this subsection:
(A)
Records and supporting documents
The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—
(i)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;
(ii)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and
(iii)
the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.
(B)
CAFTA–DR certification of origin

The term “CAFTA–DR certification of origin” means the certification established under article 4.16 of the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2)
Exports to CAFTA–DR countries

Any person who completes and issues a CAFTA–DR certification of origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof).

(3)
Retention period

Records and supporting documents shall be kept by the person who issued a CAFTA–DR certification of origin for at least 5 years after the date on which the certification was issued.

(h)
Certifications of origin for goods exported under the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement
(1)
Definitions
In this subsection:
(A)
Records and supporting documents
The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—
(i)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;
(ii)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and
(iii)
the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.
(B)
PTPA certification of origin

The term “PTPA certification of origin” means the certification established under article 4.15 of the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2)
Exports to Peru

Any person who completes and issues a PTPA certification of origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof).

(3)
Retention period

The person who issues a PTPA certification of origin shall keep the records and supporting documents relating to that certification of origin for a period of at least 5 years after the date on which the certification is issued.

(i)
Certifications of origin for goods exported under the United States–Korea Free Trade Agreement
(1)
Definitions
In this subsection:
(A)
Records and supporting documents
The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—
(i)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;
(ii)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and
(iii)
the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.
(B)
KFTA certification of origin

The term “KFTA certification of origin” means the certification established under article 6.15 of the United States–Korea Free Trade Agreement that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2)
Exports to Korea

Any person who completes and issues a KFTA certification of origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof).

(3)
Retention period

The person who issues a KFTA certification of origin shall keep the records and supporting documents relating to that certification of origin for a period of at least 5 years after the date on which the certification is issued.

(j)
Certifications of origin for goods exported under the United States–Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement
(1)
Definitions
In this subsection:
(A)
Records and supporting documents
The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—
(i)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;
(ii)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and
(iii)
the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.
(B)
CTPA certification of origin

The term “CTPA certification of origin” means the certification established under article 4.15 of the United States–Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2)
Exports to Colombia

Any person who completes and issues a CTPA certification of origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof).

(3)
Retention period

The person who issues a CTPA certification of origin shall keep the records and supporting documents relating to that certification of origin for a period of at least 5 years after the date on which the certification is issued.

(k)
Certifications of origin for goods exported under the United States–Panama Trade Promotion Agreement
(1)
Definitions
In this subsection:
(A)
Records and supporting documents
The term “records and supporting documents” means, with respect to an exported good under paragraph (2), records and documents related to the origin of the good, including—
(i)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, the good;
(ii)
the purchase, cost, and value of, and payment for, all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the good; and
(iii)
the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.
(B)
Panama TPA certification of origin

The term “Panama TPA certification of origin” means the certification established under article 4.15 of the United States–Panama Trade Promotion Agreement that a good qualifies as an originating good under such Agreement.

(2)
Exports to Panama

Any person who completes and issues a Panama TPA certification of origin for a good exported from the United States shall make, keep, and, pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Treasury, render for examination and inspection all records and supporting documents related to the origin of the good (including the certification or copies thereof).

(3)
Retention period

The person who issues a Panama TPA certification of origin shall keep the records and supporting documents relating to that certification of origin for a period of at least 5 years after the date on which the certification is issued.

(l)
Penalties
Any person who fails to retain records and supporting documents required by subsection (f), (g), (h), (i), (j), or (k) or the regulations issued to implement any such subsection shall be liable for the greater of—
(1)
a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000; or
(2)
the general record keeping penalty that applies under the customs laws of the United States.
(June 17, 1930, ch. 497, title IV, § 508, as added Pub. L. 95–410, title I, § 104, Oct. 3, 1978, 92 Stat. 889; amended Pub. L. 100–449, title II, § 205(b), Sept. 28, 1988, 102 Stat. 1864; Pub. L. 103–182, title II, § 205(a), title VI, § 614, Dec. 8, 1993, 107 Stat. 2093, 2174; Pub. L. 104–295, § 3(a)(6)(B), Oct. 11, 1996, 110 Stat. 3515; Pub. L. 108–77, title II, §§ 207, 209, Sept. 3, 2003, 117 Stat. 931, 933; Pub. L. 109–53, title II, § 208, Aug. 2, 2005, 119 Stat. 485; Pub. L. 110–138, title II, § 207, Dec. 14, 2007, 121 Stat. 1476; Pub. L. 112–41, title II, § 206, Oct. 21, 2011, 125 Stat. 449; Pub. L. 112–42, title II, § 207, Oct. 21, 2011, 125 Stat. 484; Pub. L. 112–43, title II, § 207, Oct. 21, 2011, 125 Stat. 520; Pub. L. 114–125, title IX, § 906(o), Feb. 24, 2016, 130 Stat. 233; Pub. L. 116–113, title II, § 206(a), Jan. 29, 2020, 134 Stat. 46; Pub. L. 116–260, div. O, title VI, § 601(d)(1), Dec. 27, 2020, 134 Stat. 2151.)
cite as: 19 USC 1508