For as valuable as importing goods into Australia can be for your business, it’s important that you are doing things correctly. Otherwise, you risk running into delays, penalties, and other negative consequences that would only hurt your business. First-time importers, especially, can benefit from hiring a customs broker who will have a working knowledge of every aspect of the importation process and be able to execute each step properly.
Importing and exporting can be fairly complicated, especially if you have never done it before. It helps to have a professional who is not only experienced, but up-to-date on current policy as well.
Preparing and Lodging Documents
There are a number of documents and reports that need to be submitted prior to the arrival of the goods, and in some instances, further documentation is required upon arrival. Much of this concerns quarantine and inspection, but you will also need to report excise liabilities for certain goods.
You will also be required to have several customs clearance documents including a bill of lading, a commercial invoice, and a packing list. Rather than juggle all of the documents on your own, your brokers can help you stay organised.
Customs brokers not only help you get the required documentation, but they are also making sure the documents are prepared in a way that allows you to avoid delays.
Refunds and Duty Drawbacks
When you go with a customs brokerage, you also ensure that you don’t miss out on any refunds or duty drawbacks. Your brokers will know all of the countries that have a free trade agreement with Australia, and they will know the circumstances under which importers can take advantage of drawbacks and refunds. As long as there is an expert with an eye on your goods, you won’t miss out on any reduced rates.
Brokers can also help with Tariff Concession Orders (TCO), which reduce duty rates under certain circumstances, and there are several different documents required for this, as well.
Classification and Valuation
It’s important that your goods are classified correctly, which can be tricky for certain products that might fit into multiple categories. Additionally, the classification of your goods will also impact the valuation, and a customs broker will help you determine the customs value of your goods and submit the necessary documentation.
Avoiding Costly Mistakes
One of the primary reasons to hire a customs broker is to avoid costly mistakes. There are a number of things that can lead to a delay or a penalty, including inaccurate information or failure to submit a document altogether, but if you are unfamiliar with the process and the different expectations, it’s difficult to catch these mistakes before it’s too late.
A customs broker will be there to help you organise and submit all of your documents with accurate information, and they can also help with laded costing, commerce regulations, prohibited import regulations, and more. By taking advantage of these services, you ensure that your goods arrive and are ready to go on time.