19 U.S. Code § 1431a - Documentation of waterborne cargo

(a) Applicability
This section shall apply to all cargo to be exported that is moved by a vessel carrier from a port in the United States.
(b) Documentation required
(1) No shipper of cargo subject to this section (including an ocean transportation intermediary that is a non-vessel-operating common carrier (as defined in section 40102 (16) of title 46) may tender or cause to be tendered to a vessel carrier cargo subject to this section for loading on a vessel in a United States port, unless such cargo is properly documented pursuant to this subsection.
(2) For the purposes of this subsection, cargo shall be considered properly documented if the shipper submits to the vessel carrier or its agent a complete set of shipping documents no later than 24 hours after the cargo is delivered to the marine terminal operator, but under no circumstances later than 24 hours prior to departure of the vessel.
(3) A complete set of shipping documents shall include—
(A) for shipments for which a shipper’s export declaration is required, a copy of the export declaration or, if the shipper files such declarations electronically in the Automated Export System, the complete bill of lading, and the master or equivalent shipping instructions, including the Internal Transaction Number (ITN); or
(B) for shipments for which a shipper’s export declaration is not required, a shipper’s export declaration exemption statement and such other documents or information as the Secretary may by regulation prescribe.
(4) The Secretary shall by regulation prescribe the time, manner, and form by which shippers shall transmit documents or information required under this subsection to the Customs Service.
(c) Loading undocumented cargo prohibited
(1) No marine terminal operator (as defined in section 40102 (14) of title 46) may load, or cause to be loaded, any cargo subject to this section on a vessel unless instructed by the vessel carrier operating the vessel that such cargo has been properly documented in accordance with this section.
(2) When cargo is booked by 1 vessel carrier to be transported on the vessel of another vessel carrier, the booking carrier shall notify the operator of the vessel that the cargo has been properly documented in accordance with this section. The operator of the vessel may rely on such notification in releasing the cargo for loading aboard the vessel.
(d) Reporting of undocumented cargo
(1) In general
A vessel carrier shall notify the Customs Service of any cargo tendered to such carrier that is not properly documented pursuant to this section and that has remained in the marine terminal for more than 48 hours after being delivered to the marine terminal, and the location of the cargo in the marine terminal.
(2) Sharing arrangements
For vessel carriers that are members of vessel sharing agreements (or any other arrangement whereby a carrier moves cargo on another carrier’s vessel), the vessel carrier accepting the booking shall be responsible for reporting undocumented cargo, without regard to whether it operates the vessel on which the transportation is to be made.
(3) Reassignment to another vessel
For purposes of this subsection and subsection (f) of this section, if merchandise has been tendered to a marine terminal operator and subsequently reassigned for carriage on another vessel, the merchandise shall be considered properly documented if the information provided reflects carriage on the previously assigned vessel and otherwise meets the requirements of subsection (b) of this section. Notwithstanding the preceding sentence, it shall be the responsibility of the vessel carrier to notify the Customs Service promptly of any reassignment of merchandise for carriage on a vessel other than the vessel on which the merchandise was originally assigned.
(4) Multiple containers
If a single shipment is comprised of multiple containers, the 48-hour period described in paragraph (1) shall begin to run from the time the last container of the shipment is delivered to the marine terminal operator. It shall be the responsibility of the person tendering the cargo to inform the carrier that the shipment consists of multiple containers that will be delivered to the marine terminal operator at different times as part of a single shipment.
(e) Assessment of penalties
Whoever is found to have violated subsection (b) of this section shall be liable to the United States for civil penalties in a monetary amount up to the value of the cargo, or the actual cost of the transportation, whichever is greater.
(f) Seizure of undocumented cargo
(1) Any cargo that is not properly documented pursuant to this section and has remained in the marine terminal for more than 48 hours after being delivered to the marine terminal operator shall be subject to search, seizure, and forfeiture.
(2) The shipper of any such cargo is liable to the marine terminal operator and to the ocean carrier for demurrage and other applicable charges for any undocumented cargo which has been notified to or searched or seized by the Customs Service for the entire period the cargo remains under the order and direction of the Customs Service. Unless the cargo is seized by the Customs Service and forfeited, the marine terminal operator and the ocean carrier shall have a lien on the cargo for the amount of the demurrage and other charges.
(g) Effect on other provisions
Nothing in this section shall be construed, interpreted, or applied to relieve or excuse any party from compliance with any obligation or requirement arising under any other law, regulation, or order with regard to the documentation or carriage of cargo.

Source

(June 17, 1930, ch. 497, title IV, § 431A, as added Pub. L. 107–210, div. A, title III, § 343(b),Aug. 6, 2002, 116 Stat. 983; amended Pub. L. 107–295, title I, § 108(a),Nov. 25, 2002, 116 Stat. 2088.)
Codification

In subsec. (b)(1), “(as defined in section 40102 (16) of title 46)” substituted for “(as defined in section 3(17)(B) of the Shipping Act of 1984 (46 App. U.S.C. 1702 (17)(B))” and in subsec. (c)(1), “section 40102 (14) of title 46” substituted for “section 3(14) of the Shipping Act of 1984 (46 App. U.S.C. 1702 (14))” on authority of Pub. L. 109–304, § 18(c),Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1709, which Act enacted section 40102 of Title 46, Shipping.
Amendments

2002—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 107–295amended heading and text of subsec. (d) generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: “A vessel carrier shall notify the Customs Service of any cargo tendered to such carrier that is not properly documented pursuant to this section and that has remained in the marine terminal for more than 48 hours after being delivered to the marine terminal, and the location of the cargo in the marine terminal. For vessel carriers that are members of vessel sharing agreements (or any other arrangement whereby a carrier moves cargo on another carrier’s vessel), the vessel carrier accepting the booking shall be responsible for reporting undocumented cargo, without regard to whether it operates the vessel on which the transportation is to be made.”
Effective Date

Section applicable to petitions for certification filed under part 2 or 3 of subchapter II of chapter 12 of this title on or after the date that is 90 days after Aug. 6, 2002, except as otherwise provided, see section 151 ofPub. L. 107–210, set out as an Effective Date of 2002 Amendment note preceding section 2271 of this title.
Transfer of Functions

For transfer of functions, personnel, assets, and liabilities of the United States Customs Service of the Department of the Treasury, including functions of the Secretary of the Treasury relating thereto, to the Secretary of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 203 (1), 551 (d), 552 (d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

The table below lists the classification updates, since Jan. 3, 2012, for this section. Updates to a broader range of sections may be found at the update page for containing chapter, title, etc.

The most recent Classification Table update that we have noticed was Tuesday, August 13, 2013

An empty table indicates that we see no relevant changes listed in the classification tables. If you suspect that our system may be missing something, please double-check with the Office of the Law Revision Counsel.

19 USCDescription of ChangeSession YearPublic LawStatutes at Large

 

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