Administrative Monetary Penalty System
In this section
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) uses the Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS) to issue monetary penalties to commercial clients for violating CBSA's trade and border legislation.
The purpose of AMPS is to provide the Agency with a means to deter non-compliance by its clients and create a level playing field for all Canadian businesses.
The Master Penalty Document contains all AMPS contraventions that may be applied to commercial clients including importers, exporters, brokers, warehouse and duty free shop operators, carriers, freight forwarders or their representatives.
Penalty Assessment Process
Non-compliance with CBSA requirements may result in being assessed a monetary penalty under AMPS.
Examples of non-compliance that most often result in AMPS penalties
- Failure to pay duties;
- Failure to provide required information to the CBSA;
- Unauthorized removal of goods from a warehouse;
- Direct delivery of goods prior to release from CBSA control;
- Failure to report goods to the CBSA;
- Failure to self-correct an incorrect declaration.
You are responsible for the accuracy and completeness of your import and export transactions, as well as any AMPS penalties that may be issued for non-compliance, even if you hire a customs broker to carry out responsibilities on your behalf. These responsibilities include the following:
- obtaining release of imported goods;
- paying any duties that apply;
- obtaining, preparing, presenting or transmitting the necessary documents or data;
- maintaining records; and
- responding to any CBSA concerns after payment.
We suggest you work closely with your service providers and with the CBSA to ensure that your import and export transactions fully comply with all CBSA requirements.
If it is determined that you are not in compliance with the relevant legislation and regulations, you will be assessed a penalty based on the type, severity and frequency of the contravention.
Notice of Penalty Assessment
When you are issued a penalty under AMPS, you will receive a Notice of Penalty Assessment (NPA), form E650, from the CBSA describing the infraction and the penalty incurred.
The NPA contains the following information:
- Notice Date: The date the NPA was issued by the CBSA. This will be used to determine when interest starts to accrue.
- Penalty Assessment Number: The number that is automatically assigned by the system when the penalty assessment is created.
- Penalty Amount: The total amount assessed and owing.
- Office Code: The four-digit identifier of the work location (office) where the penalty assessment was issued.
- Client Customs Account Name / Address: The client's customs account name and address as recorded in the Customs Commercial System (CCS) or the Accelerated Commercial Release Support System (ACROSS).
- Legal Name: The legal name of clients as identified by a Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) Business Number.
- Client Identifier: These are the client identification numbers as specified under ACROSS.
- Business Number (BN): the client's CRA account number
- Carrier Code: 4-digit identifier of the carrier/transporter
- Sublocation Code: 4-digit identifier of the warehouse
- Reason For Penalty Assessment: Details of the penalty assessment.
- Contravention identifier: The numerical identifier of the applicable contravention recorded as "C" plus a 3-digit numeric series (e.g. C005).
- Contravention: Description of the contravention in the penalty assessment.
- Legislative / Regulatory Authority: The applicable legislative and/or regulatory reference associated with the contravention.
- Penalty Calculation Information: The information used to calculate the penalty, as well as the total penalty amount for the contravention.
- Related Information: All parameters captured for a contravention will be displayed, if applicable (e.g. B3 number, Mode of transport, Tractor License plate number).
- Payment: The amount payable in Canadian dollars, where to pay, as well as information on interest payable if payment is not made within 30 days of the day after the notice was served.
- Review of Enforcement Action: Information on initiating a correction to the NPA based on obvious errors or a request for a formal review (redress) if you believe the penalty assessment has been applied inappropriately.
- Issuing Office / Address: The address of the CBSA office where the NPA was issued.
- Issuing Officer Identification: The badge number or name of the officer who issued the penalty assessment.
Review Process – Correction and Appeals
If you believe that the penalty issued by the CBSA was incorrect, you may contact the issuing CBSA office to request a correction within 90 days of the date of your notice. Errors must be evident to both parties and may include, but are not limited to, errors in calculation, name, address, contravention type, or amount assessed.
A correction can be requested if:
- Client information is incorrect
Example: you receive a Notice of Penalty Assessment (NPA) in which the officer entered your client identification number in error. The penalty should have been issued and served to another client instead.
- The penalty level is incorrect
Example: you have received a level one penalty but it was cancelled. You are later issued the same penalty but at the second level. You can request to have it corrected and lowered to the correct level.
- The penalty amount assessed is incorrect
Example: clear and obvious clerical or typographical errors exist regarding quantity, number of boxes, or an incorrect currency which affected the calculation of the penalty amount.
- Additional information was sent after the penalty was issued
Example: you can provide documentation that a permit was applied for before submitting a release request for shipments requiring automated permits.
- Required payment of duties was made within prescribed time limits
Example: you paid your K84 on time but at a different location outside of the business hours of the accounting office. Submit proof of K84 payment within prescribed time limits to the accounting office.
If you believe the penalty has been applied inappropriately and that you disagree with the Notice of Penalty Assessment, you have the right to request a formal review of your file within 90 days of the enforcement action.
Checking your Compliance
To avoid AMPS penalties, trade chain partners must understand their obligations and then assess their level of compliance.
- Know and understand the requirements related to your import and export transactions:
- Consult service providers to ensure that all aspects of your import and export transactions are compliant.
- Call the CBSA's Border Information Service or contact the nearest CBSA office for information.
- Verify that import and export transactions are fully compliant with requirements:
- Use the Importing and Exporting of commercial goods checklists from CBSA for help.
- Make use of the various CBSA publications available on the website for information.
- Develop and implement a compliance plan:
- Identify and correct any current compliance issues.
- Monitor your import and export transactions on an ongoing basis to ensure compliance over time.
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