As indicated in a joint temporary final rule issue by the Treasury Department and CBP, available on cbp.gov, and an alert issued by CBP’s Cargo Systems Messaging Service (CSMS #42423171), an importer will be considered to have a “significant financial hardship” if its operations are “fully or partially suspended during March 2020 or April 2020 due to orders from a competent governmental authority limiting commerce, travel, or group meetings due to COVID-19, and as a result of such suspension, the gross receipts of such importer for March 13–31, 2020 or April 2020 are less than 60 percent of the gross receipts for the comparable period in 2019.” Although an importer does not need to file documentation with CBP to be eligible for this relief, it must maintain documentation as part of its books and records establishing that it meets the requirements for relief. CBP specifically indicates in its alert that it may conduct a review of the documentation at a future date to ensure compliance with the requirements.
To take advantage of this 90-day postponement, CBP encourages filers to utilize the Automated Clearinghouse for electronic payment. CBP has issued further payment instructions for qualifying entries in CSMS #42421561.
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