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Import Resources

Import Surveillance Hero

About the Office of Import Surveillance

CPSC’s Office of Import Surveillance (EXIS) works closely with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to identify and examine imported shipments of consumer products. As part of this effort, EXIS has co-located investigators at ports of entry who work side-by-side with CBP staff. EXIS also works to educate importers, manufacturers, and Customs brokers on CPSC’s standards and procedures.

For any questions or inquiries, please contact us below. Please allow 16 business hours to elapse after your shipment physically arrives at the port before inquiring about the status of a specific shipment, and please include the entry number and port of entry.

Contact Us

e-Commerce Assessment

The Office of Import Surveillance conducted an e-Commerce Assessment to forecast e-Commerce trends, understand the agency’s current capabilities relative to e-Commerce, and identify other stakeholder practices (including U.S. government agencies, foreign governments, and industry).


CPSC issues a Notice of Violation when there is a violation of a mandatory standard. These notices advise companies of the violation and of the nature of the necessary corrective action, which may include a recall, stop sale, or correction of production.

U.S. Government Notification Messaging at Import

This document describes CPSC’s participation in One U.S. Government Notification Messaging at Import.

Guidance to Industry on CPSC ACE DIS Use

The following guidance is to be referenced when documents are being asked to be provided on a shipment at the time of importation. It provides clear instructions to be sure that CPSC staff can retrieve documents out of the ACE DIS system.

eFiling Initiative (CPSC’s PGA Message Set)

CPSC will conduct an eFiling Beta Pilot to support the strategic objective of increasing the Commission’s import targeting capabilities.

CPSC Detention of Products at Import FAQ

June 14th, 2010. 

Yes.  CPSC and CBP will send separate notices of detention.  However, the CBP detention will be resolved first.  If CBP seizes the product under its authority, the CPSC detention will end.  If CBP finds no violation and releases the product from its detention, the product will not be released to the importer until the CPSC detention is resolved.   

CPSC will try to make admissibility decisions on products within 30 days of detention.

All information relevant to the detention will be included on the notice, including the reason for the detention, and the contact information for the CPSC Investigator responsible for processing the detention.  

Email is preferred, if available on the entry documents.  Express mail or fax may also be used.  We prefer not to send anything via regular mail. 

Yes.  There will be situations where CPSC will allow merchandise under examination to be moved to the importer’s premises or other place agreeable to CPSC and CBP pending the results of the examination.  Any such release will be a conditional release and must occur under CBP bond.   

A.  Notices of Detention will be sent to the importer of record and the Customs broker handling the transaction.  CBP will receive copies of all Notices of Detention. 

Not at this time.  This functionality will be incorporated in ACE as part of the cargo release process per the CBP Concept of Operations.

CPSC will notify the importer of the length of the conditional release period on a case by case basis, although the typical timeframe will be 30 days.  Individual circumstances concerning the type of product and the complexity of examination will be taken into account. 

No. Any products detained by CPSC will continue to be held in a bonded facility regulated by CBP. 

CPSC may allow this on a case-by-case basis.  Contact the CPSC Investigator processing the detention for further information if that is an outcome that you would choose. 

Yes, the importer and/or broker are encouraged to submit any reasonable testing results or other evidence that would support the admissibility of the detained product.  The Notice of Detention will allow 5 working days for the recipient to respond.  Reasonable extensions of time to produce necessary evidence will be allowed under certain circumstances.  CPSC is seeking to receive a quick response from the importer and/or broker in order to expedite resolution of the detention. 

Unless the product is detained under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act, the Poison Prevention Packaging Act, or the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, in lieu of submission of evidence to the CPSC officer, you may request a full hearing before an administrative law judge.  If you choose this option, there will be considerable delay in the detention and the merchandise will continue to be held at your risk and expense. 

CPSC only detains products described in the Notice of Detention.  The importer and/or his broker should contact CBP if it wishes to obtain release of remaining products in the shipment. 

CPSC has the authority to determine the admissibility of consumer products and some hazardous substances offered for import.  Accordingly, if it is necessary to detain a product in order to determine its admissibility into the United States, CPSC is best situated to control that process.  Issuance of Notices of Detention by CPSC will eliminate CBP as the information conduit in the admissibility process and will allow the importer and/or his broker to deal directly with CPSC.   

No.  CPSC detention decisions are not made pursuant to 19 USC 1499 and are not subject to protest.  

No.  Products will not be constructively detained at the importer’s premises.

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