Responsible Supervision and Control

This term, in a US Customs sense, applies to the efforts of a licensed customs broker working to ensure that all customs business executed by their employees meet all regulatory requirements, and are transacted with substantially the same level of quality that the broker is required to provide.

What is responsible supervision and control?

When CBP implemented the Customs Modernization Act, the most significant effect it had on trade was the implementation of “informed compliance” and “shared responsibility”. This means that the trade community, the importer and broker, must work together to ensure compliance is met through the information and guidance provided by CBP. The importer is responsible for exercising reasonable care, while the broker is responsible for exercising responsible supervision and control. Determining the necessary steps to perform and maintain responsible supervision and control will vary depending upon the circumstances in each instance. If CBP audits the broker and finds that responsible supervision and control was not used, there can be heavy fines assessed depending on the amount of non-compliance.

What is needed to achieve responsible supervision and control?

Per the definition of responsible supervision and control provided by CBP in Title 19 CFR Part 111.1, this broker requirement includes such factors as:

  1. The training required of employees of the broker;
  2. The issuance of written instructions and guidelines to employees of the broker;
  3. The volume and type of business of the broker;
  4. The reject rate for the various customs transactions;
  5. The maintenance of current editions of CBP Regulations, the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States, and CBP issuances;
  6. The availability of an individually licensed broker for necessary consultation with employees of the broker;
  7. The frequency of supervisory visits of an individually licensed broker to another office of the broker that does not have a resident individually licensed broker;
  8. The frequency of audits and reviews by an individually licensed broker of the customs transactions handled by employees of the broker;
  9. The extent to which the individually licensed broker who qualifies the district permit is involved in the operation of the brokerage;
  10. Any circumstance which indicates that an individually licensed broker has a real interest in the operations of a broker.