OT: Bringing Cisco equipment to US

John Edwards john at vocus.com.au
Mon Jun 29 22:29:12 UTC 2009

On 30/06/2009, at 6:52 AM, Martin Hannigan wrote:

> Not a lawyer -- not legal advice.

Neither are the customs guys - experience tells me that if they have  
any doubt, they'll seize the equipment. They'll want to see an invoice  
for the original purchase of the equipment, and if it was more than  
$2000 (I think) it needs to be processed correctly.

Anything coming into the country is an import, even if you don't plan  
to sell it. If customs seize the equipment, they'll be nice enough  
about it, but allow for a week to resolve the problem with a broker  
system that seems to prefer faxes and hand-written forms.

Cisco provide a tool for determining the correct tariff codes for  
pieces of their equipment and the components therein;


"Country of Origin" doesn't work so well for Cisco equipment, as most  
of it is made outside of the US.

"Machines for the reception, conversion and transmission or  
regeneration of voice, images or other data, including switching and  
routing apparatus" have a zero tariff for import into the US, unless  
they were manufactured in North Korea or Cuba.

> You should only have to declare them at the border and pay the import
> duty (tax) _right there_. They take credit cards. Declare them on
> customs form I-74? handed out on the plane before you land.

Notify One Willshire that the equipment is coming, and use an  
international courier to send it there.

The courier will likely charge you less than a customs broker will for  
a single item - the brokers are mainly used for large transactions.  
While you're legally entitled to bring this equipment in carry-on  
luggage, proving and authenticating your right can be a costly and  
timely exercise.

John Edwards

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