What Is Clearance Delay and What Can You Do About It?

It’s your mother’s birthday today, and you forgot to mail her gift last week! What will you do? You decide to choose the same-day shipping option. This way, it will arrive on time for her, and you won’t be in any hot water. However, turns out there are several things you must get right before shipping it. Otherwise, you will find yourself involved in a clearance delay.

When information hasn’t been accurately recorded or its missing, often customs will hold the object or package. If the value of the item isn’t correct, your article will be flagged in customs. Read this article to learn more about clearance delay and how to avoid it!

What is Clearance Delay?

Clearance delay is when a package is held up at customs or the border. This is not good for companies who need to send items for same-day delivery. Let’s look at why clearance delays occur and how to avoid them in the future.

Customs Process

Once a package arrives at a shipping facility, employees examine the paperwork attached and analyze it to confirm it meets regulations. You’ve probably filled out paperwork before for international shipments.

Did you know how important it is? Regulations can change without notice. Your shipping partner must make sure your package is compliant before it is sent. A package typically has customs clearance before the transporting plane lands because of today’s technological advances.

Approval Process

Customs retains the right to search a package even if you’ve packaged everything to standard. Note that if you misrepresented what you’re mailing on the customs form, your package could be rejected or flagged for further inspection.

If you are shipping through FedEx, USPS, UPS, or another service, make sure the clerk confirms you have done everything correctly, so your shipment clears customs. More businesses are using the self-ship software. If you are, stay up to date with the changing regulations.

Further Explanations for Clearance Delays

Research and find out what you need to ship internationally. Do not underestimate the requirements. Here is a list of common errors people make when filling out paperwork:

  • Description of content is vague. Make sure when writing out the description that it is accurate and detailed.
  • If you are sending computer parts, make sure you include those words along with the serial number of the components, model, and brand name.
  • Shipment documents are incomplete. Values, pages of the invoice, or quantities are missing.
  • Wrong product code.
  • Description or invoice is not in English.
  • False value or quantity. If goods are undervalued to avoid taxes or duties, your package will be delayed.
  • Textile samples not prepped correctly.

Unfinished Consignee and Shipper Information

If the address or name is incomplete, the shipment will be delayed. The carrier will have to figure out how the shipment should be dealt with. If there is an inaccuracy in your paperwork, you could be delayed for this. If you attach the wrong paperwork, it will be delayed. Make sure you don’t miss a single item on the form. If you miss one item, your package could be delayed.

No Description

The carrier must report who is importing the goods and identify what is being imported. This information must be accurate for the customer and Customs.

Missing Client Master File Data

This is the most common reason for delays in shipping. Shippers must provide their carrier with their Power of Attorney, importer and bond information before the shipment arrives.

Once this information is received, and on file, future shipments will be covered.

Denied Parties

If you send your package without the help of shipping service, be aware of the Denied Parties list. This includes regions and recipients that are off limits for shipments.

Do your research, so this doesn’t happen to you.

Customs and Government Agency Exams

Customs may ask for an exam of the shipment if the shipment details and paperwork are incomplete. If the shipper or description cannot be identified, it will be held. Sometimes, Customs conducts random exams. If approved, the item will be released. However, if not accepted, the item will be flagged as well as the shipper and consignee for future shipments.

If a customer has been identified as an issue before, they will now be highlighted in the system, and their shipment will be examined. If the value isn’t correctly recorded, the shipment will be flagged.

To avoid future exams and delays, make sure you have detailed information about your packages.

Are There Any Outstanding Taxes?

Some countries will impose taxes on certain valued shipments. If these taxes are payable on your delivery, it will be held at customers until the outstanding balance has been paid in full. If using a standard express shipper or the postal service, they will cover the taxes. This will clear your goods.

If a shipment is over $2500, then you may need a customs broker. They will arrange for the taxes to be covered so the delivery will be released. You can do this yourself, but it may cost you more than hiring a professional.

Research and find out the tax arrangements, customs clearing process. Otherwise, your package could be destroyed or returned.

Now What?

A common frustration with shipping delays is there is nothing you can do but wait. If you go online and note that your package is marked ‘clearance delay’ contact the service that shipped it. Contact the recipient to let them know what is going on.

Contact Us

If you are seeking a courier business that will send your package for same-day delivery, make sure you do your research. Ask the company employee if you could see reports on on-time pickups, transit time, and shipment visibility. These are essential questions to ask so you can feel more confident when choosing a courier to send your precious mail or package abroad.