19 CFR 24.1 - Collection of Customs duties, taxes, fees, interest, and other charges.
(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, the following procedure shall be observed in the collection of Customs duties, taxes, fees, interest, and other charges (see § 111.29(b) and 141.1(b) of this chapter):
(1) Any form of United States currency or coin legally current at time of acceptance shall be accepted.
(2) Any bank draft, cashier's check, or certified check drawn on a national or state bank or trust company of the United States or a bank in Puerto Rico or any possession of the United States if such draft or checks are acceptable for deposit by a Federal Reserve bank, branch Federal Reserve bank, or other designated depositary shall be accepted.
(i) An uncertified check drawn by an interested party on a national or state bank or trust company of the United States or a bank in Puerto Rico or any possession of the United States if such checks are acceptable for deposit by a Federal Reserve bank, branch Federal Reserve bank, or other designated depositary shall be accepted if there is on file with the port director a bond to secure the payment of the duties, taxes, fees, interest, or other charges, or if a bond has not been filed, the organization or individual drawing and tendering the uncertified check has been approved by the port director to make payment in such manner. In determining whether an uncertified check shall be accepted in the absence of a bond, the port director shall use available credit data obtainable without cost to the Government, such as that furnished by banks, local business firms, better business bureaus, or local credit exchanges, sufficient to satisfy him of the credit standing or reliability of the drawer of the check. For purposes of this paragraph, a customs broker who does not have a permit for the district (see the definition of “district” at § 111.1 of this chapter) where the entry is filed, is an interested party for the purpose of Customs acceptance of such broker's own check, provided the broker has on file the necessary power of attorney which is unconditioned geographically for the performance of ministerial acts. Customs may look to the principal (importer) or to the surety should the check be dishonored.
(ii) If, during the preceding 12-month period, an importer or interested party has paid duties or any other obligation by check and more than one check is returned dishonored by the debtor's financial institution, the port director shall require a certified check, money order or cash from the importer or interested party for each subsequent payment until such time that the port director is satisfied that the debtor has the ability to consistently present uncertified checks that will be honored by the debtor's financial institution.
(4) A U.S. Government check endorsed by the payee to the U.S. Customs Service, a domestic traveler's check, or a U.S. postal, bank, express, or telegraph money order shall be accepted. Before accepting this form of payment the Customs cashier or other employee authorized to receive Customs collections shall require such identification in the way of a current driver's license issued by a state of the United States, or a current passport properly authenticated by the Department of State, or a current credit card issued by one of the numerous travel agencies or clubs, or other credit data, etc., from which he can verify the identity and signature of the person tendering such check or money order.
(5) The face amount of a bank draft, cashier's check, certified check, or uncertified check tendered in accordance with this paragraph shall not exceed the amount due by more than $1 and any required change is authorized to be made out of any available cash funds on hand.
(6) The face amount of a U.S. Government check, traveler's check, or money order tendered in accordance with this paragraph shall not exceed the amount due by more than $50 and any required change is authorized to be made out of any available cash funds on hand.
(7) Credit or charge cards, which have been authorized by the Commissioner of Customs, may be used for the payment of duties, taxes, fees, and/or other charges at designated Customs-serviced locations. Payment by this manner is limited to non-commercial entries and is subject to ultimate collection from the credit card company. Persons paying by charge or credit card will remain liable for all such charges until paid. Information as to those credit card companies authorized by Customs may be obtained from Customs officers.
(8) Participants in the Automated Broker Interface may use statement processing as described in § 24.25 of this part. Statement processing allows entry/entry summaries and entry summaries to be grouped by either importer or by filer, and allows payment of related duties, taxes and fees by a single payment, rather than by individual checks for each entry. The preferred method of payment for users of statement processing is by Automated Clearinghouse.
(b) At piers, terminals, bridges, airports and other similar places, in addition to the methods of payment prescribed in paragraph (a) of this section, a personal check drawn on a national or state bank or trust company of the United States shall be accepted by Customs inspectors and other Customs employees authorized to receive Customs collections in payment of duties, taxes, fees, interest, and other charges on noncommercial importations, subject to the identification requirements of paragraph (a)(4) of this section and this paragraph. Where the amount of the check is over $25, the Customs cashier or other employee authorized to receive Customs collections will ensure that the payor's name, home and business telephone number (including area code), and date of birth are recorded on the face (front) side of the monetary instrument. In addition, one of the following will be recorded on the face side of the instrument: preferably, the payor's social security number or, alternatively, a current passport number or current driver's license number (including issuing state). A personal check received under this paragraph and a United States Government check, traveler's check, or money order received under paragraph (a) of this section by such Customs inspectors and other Customs employees shall also be subject to the following conditions:
(1) Where the amount is less than $100 and the identification requirements of paragraph (a)(4) of this section have been met, the Customs employee accepting the check or money order will place his name and badge number on the collection voucher and place the serial number or other form of voucher identification on the face side of the check or money order so that the check or money order can be easily associated with the voucher.
(2) Where the amount is $100 or more, in addition to the requirements of paragraph (b)(1) of this section the Customs employee accepting the check or money order shall obtain the approval of the Customs officer in charge who also shall personally verify the identification data and indicate his approval by initialing the collection voucher below the signature of the Customs employee who approved the receipt of the check or money order.
(3) A personal check tendered in accordance with this paragraph shall be accepted only when drawn for the amount of the duties, taxes, fees, and other charges to be paid by such check.
(c) Checks on foreign banks, foreign travelers' checks, and commercial drafts or bills of exchange subject to acceptance by the drawees shall not be accepted.
(d) Checks and other negotiable papers covering duties, taxes, fees, interest, and other Customs charges shall be made payable to the United States Customs Service.
(e) Any person who pays by check any duties, taxes, fees, interest, or other charges or obligations due the Customs Service which are not guaranteed by a Customs bond shall be assessed a charge of $30.00 for each check which is returned unpaid by a financial institution for any reason, except the charge will not be assessed if it is shown that the maker of the check was not at fault in connection with the return of the check. This charge shall be in addition to any unpaid duties, taxes, fees, interest, and other charges.