Tariff Classification Analysis

Harmonized System (HS) classification numbers are the standardized numerical method trade partners use to classify traded products. Consisting of, at a minimum, six digits, these numbers are used by brokers and Customs as a short-hand indicator of the nature of shipped goods. 

Properly classifying your imported goods is fundamental to the success of those imports. 

However, finding the code most applicable to your goods is not always straightforward. There are over 5,000 commodity groups, and many goods can reasonably be assumed to be part of a multitude of those groups. A regular question asked of brokers is how one determines what the correct HS tariff classification number is on a particular import, and the answer is simple - decades of experience.

Informed Accuracy

Trust our team of specialists to ensure your goods are properly classified before they ship.
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What Can We Do for You?

When you work with PCB , you gain a keen insight into your business’s imports through the lens of a tenured trade expert. From analyzing your imports' current classifications to establishing new descriptions of incoming parts and products, the PCB team is at your fingertips for a host of invaluable services in this field, including: 

  • The creation and maintenance of a database of up-to-date classifications for your business’s goods and/or parts. 
  • Research and advice on the correct classification of your goods.
  • Help in producing full and proper descriptions of your goods.
  • Reviews of previous entries to ensure compliance.
  • Reviews and comparisons of both Canadian and US databases to ensure consistency. 
  • Assistance in integrating new part numbers and products in your existing pipeline.

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Benefits of Tariff Classification Analysis:

Classification is a pillar of importation, and it has proven to be a well-leveraged and often litigated factor in international trade. Proper tariff classifications are fundamental to saving on duties at Customs, and incorrect classifications can result in significant penalties and delays up to seven years after the fact. 

However, the ‘correct’ classification is not always obvious, and businesses, both large and small, have fought many protracted legal battles seeking tariff classification rulings on what may at first appear as minor differences. This kind of analysis is a worthwhile endeavor as the protests and appeals that follow, if accepted, can represent hundreds of thousands of dollars in cost-savings for that company. 

Ultimately, the benefits of correct tariff classification are significant, as are the consequences of ignoring it. Regardless of how long you have been importing, getting your classification right will always be worth pursuing and a vital part of your import process.