The general public might be unaware of the usefulness of a customs brokerage firm, but a customs broker can benefit a business’s success. In simple terms, a customs broker facilitates international trade by making import easier for their client’s business. The sheer volume of raw goods and materials that cross international borders is overwhelming and often requires a middle person.
A customs broker works with importers, ensures the legality of shipments, and assists in clearing shipments through customs. However, a customs brokerage firm offers a wide array of services that can help your business exponentially. If you find the output of your commodity growing, here are some of the reasons you might want to consider hiring a customs broker.
Power of Attorney
“Power of attorney,” often sounding intimidating, is a necessary step when procuring a customs broker. You grant a customs broker power of attorney over your shipment, which allows them to do their job. They can do the extra steps for you like legally submitting paperwork, correcting documentation, communicating with customs agents, and handling your shipment.
A customs broker won’t be able to help you much without power of attorney. Therefore, you should genuinely trust the firm you hire to complete services on your behalf. You might not feel comfortable giving a broker full power of attorney over your customs. Instead, you can also hire your customs broker to advise you along the process.
Guidance & Dependency
Working with a customs broker is incredibly beneficial because you have an expert at your disposal. Importing goods is a complicated and lengthy process—with your customs broker, you can receive custom consulting on how to import your specific customs.
A customs broker can either take full control over the whole process, or they can walk you through each step. You’ll have to consider the clearance process, where a novice could make any number of mistakes: paperwork, communication, and any lingering questions you might have regarding customs clearance.
Saves You Time, Money & Stress
None of us enjoys the laborious process of filling out paperwork. How often have you wished that you could hire someone to do your paperwork? This is an incredible benefit of hiring a customs broker: they’ll complete and file your paperwork. When you grant a customs broker the freedom to submit your paperwork, they go on record as the “importer of record.” This title comes after giving them the “power of attorney.” They are then able to sign your name in your absence, and it is legally viable.
There’s a lot of red tape with customs import—for a good reason. Therefore, customs documentation is laden with complicated language, lengthy, and incredibly easy to mess up. Having a professional who can either advise you on how to fill out the paperwork, so you don’t miss a critical section, or any essential rules and regulations, or who can fill it out for you is irreplaceable.
A simple mistake could easily ensure that your shipment is prevented its entry into the U.S. or the designated country, or it could delay your shipment exponentially. Leaving the paperwork to a professional means fewer headaches for you.
Is it 100% necessary to hire a customs broker for importing? Nope. You might have a process that makes import easy for you to handle or comfortable doing it on your own. However, it never hurts to have more eyes on a complicated process to ease your stress or doubts.