After your carrier reports a shipment to us, you may want to move it inland to a licensed warehouse facility for customs release. This means that goods can be moved beyond the border or an airport without having cleared customs, but remain under customs control.
Sufferance warehouses are privately owned and operated facilities licensed by the CBSA for the short-term storage and the examination of imported goods pending release from customs. Sufferance warehouse keepers charge user fees to their clients for storage and handling. Your goods may stay in a sufferance warehouse for up to 40 days.
For details, see Memorandum D4-1-4, Customs Sufferance Warehouses.
You can place both imported and domestic goods destined for export in a customs bonded warehouse for up to four years if, for example, you imported them on a consignment basis, if they serve as inventory, or if you plan to export them. These facilities provide you with a complete deferral of all duties (including the GST) while the goods remain in the warehouse and if you then export the goods. Duties are payable only on the portion of goods that enter into the Canadian economy.
The goods may undergo the following value-added alterations in a bonded warehouse:
- labelling and marking;
- packaging and repackaging;
- testing and separating defective from prime quality goods;
- diluting, cutting, slitting, trimming, and filing; and
- disassembling or reassembling goods which have been disassembled for packing, handling, or transportation.
Bonded warehouses are one component of the duty deferral program
Place of safekeeping
If you do not claim your goods from the sufferance warehouse after 40 days, we transfer them, at your expense, to a place of safekeeping. If this happens, we notify you that if your goods are not formally released and accounted for or exported within 30 days from the date of the notice, they will be forfeit to the federal government to dispose of accordingly. You are responsible for all reasonable expenses incurred by the CBSA in the disposal of your goods where they are disposed of other than by sale. For details see Memorandum D4-1-5, Storage of Goods Regulations.
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