United States Coronavirus Lockdown and What it means for Importing Goods in the United States
With the recent lockdowns imposed by California, New York and States in the US. One of the commonly asked questions from importers in our customs broker office is how does this affect my imported goods and can I still import as usual? Most lockdowns or the term shelter in place means that only non essential business activities will be restricted such as barber shops, gyms, shopping malls and businesses that do not provide health, grocery or financial support.
In most states, if not all, the term essential business includes warehousing, storage and distribution which would apply to activities of importing goods into the US. Importers can still import goods from overseas into the United States as the shipping vessels, port terminals, US Customs, Customs Brokers and truckers are still working under essential business. The one area which importers will be affected would be that they may not be able to personally pick up their goods in person at the cfs warehouse for LCL goods when arrived. To get their goods importers will have to reply local truckers to pick up from the warehouse, and deliver either to their door or warehouse facility.
As the rules and restrictions are ever changing from a day to weekly basis, we advise importers to check with their customs broker for any updates or to seek import planning for their future shipments to ensure safe clearance and delivery of their imported goods.