19 CFR § 190.194 - Action on application to participate in compliance program.

§ 190.194 Action on application to participate in compliance program.

(a) Review by drawback office -

(1) General. It is the responsibility of the drawback office to coordinate its decision making on the package with CBP Headquarters and other CBP offices as appropriate. CBP processing of the package will consist of the review of the information contained therein as well as any additional information requested (see paragraph (a)(2) of this section).

(2) Criteria for CBP review. The drawback office will review and verify the information submitted in and with the application. In order for CBP to evaluate the application, CBP may request additional information (including additional sample documents) and/or explanations of any of the information provided for in § 190.193(c) and (d). Based on the information submitted on and with the application and any information so requested, and based on the applicant's record of transactions with CBP, the drawback office will approve or deny the application. The criteria to be considered in reviewing the applicant's record with CBP will include (as applicable):

(i) The presence or absence of unresolved customs charges (duties, taxes, fees, or other debts owed CBP);

(ii) The accuracy of the claimant's past drawback claims; and

(iii) Whether accelerated payment of drawback or waiver of prior notice of intent to export was previously revoked or suspended.

(b) Approval. Certification as a participant in the drawback compliance program will be given to applicants whose applications are approved under the criteria in paragraph (a)(2) of this section. The drawback office will give written notification to an applicant of its certification as a participant in the drawback compliance program. A customs broker obtaining certification for a drawback claimant will be sent written notification on behalf of such claimant, with a copy of the notification also being sent to the claimant.

(c) Benefits of participation in program. When a party that has been certified as a participant in the drawback compliance program and is generally in compliance with the appropriate procedures and requirements of the program commits a violation of 19 U.S.C. 1593a(a) (see § 190.62(b)), CBP will, in the absence of fraud or repeated violations, and in lieu of a monetary penalty as otherwise provided under section 1593a, issue a written notice of the violation to the party. Repeated violations by a participant, including a customs broker, may result in the issuance of penalties and the removal of certification under the program until corrective action, satisfactory to CBP, is taken.

(d) Denial. If certification as a participant in the drawback compliance program is denied, the applicant will be given written notice by the drawback office, specifying the grounds for such denial, together with any action that may be taken to correct the perceived deficiencies, and informing the applicant that such denial may be appealed to the drawback office that issued the notice of denial and then appealed to CBP Headquarters.

(e) Certification removal -

(1) Grounds for removal. The certification for participation in the drawback compliance program by a party may be removed when any of the following conditions are discovered:

(i) The certification privilege was obtained through fraud or mistake of fact;

(ii) The program participant is no longer in compliance with the customs laws and CBP regulations, including the requirements set forth in § 190.192;

(iii) The program participant has repeatedly filed false drawback claims or false or misleading documentation or other information relating to such claims; or

(iv) The program participant is convicted of any felony or has committed acts which would constitute a misdemeanor or felony involving theft, smuggling, or any theft-connected crime.

(2) Removal procedure. If CBP determines that the certification of a program participant should be removed, the drawback office will send the program participant a written notice of the removal. Such notice will inform the program participant of the grounds for the removal and will advise the program participant of its right to file an appeal of the removal in accordance with paragraph (f) of this section.

(3) Effect of removal. The removal of certification will be effective immediately in cases of willfulness on the part of the program participant or when required by public health, interest, or safety. In all other cases, the removal of certification will be effective when the program participant has received notice under paragraph (e)(2) of this section and either no appeal has been filed within the time limit prescribed in paragraph (f)(2) of this section or all appeal procedures have been concluded by a decision that upholds the removal action. Removal of certification may subject the affected person to penalties.

(f) Appeal of certification denial or removal -

(1) Appeal of certification denial. A party may challenge a denial of an application for certification as a participant in the drawback compliance program by filing a written appeal, within 30 days of issuance of the notice of denial, with the drawback office. A denial of an appeal may itself be appealed to CBP Headquarters, Trade Policy and Programs, Office of Trade, within 30 days after issuance of the drawback office's appeal decision. This office will review the appeal and will respond with a written decision within 30 days after receipt of the appeal unless circumstances require a delay in issuance of the decision. If the decision cannot be issued within the 30-day period, the office will advise the appellant of the reasons for the delay and of any further actions which will be carried out to complete the appeal review and of the anticipated date for issuance of the appeal decision.

(2) Appeal of certification removal. A party who has received a CBP notice of removal of certification for participation in the drawback compliance program may challenge the removal by filing a written appeal, within 30 days after issuance of the notice of removal, with the drawback office. A denial of an appeal may itself be appealed to CBP Headquarters, Trade Policy and Programs, Office of Trade, within 30 days after issuance of the drawback office's appeal decision. This office will consider the allegations upon which the removal was based and the responses made to those allegations by the appellant and will render a written decision on the appeal within 30 days after receipt of the appeal.