CBP seizes counterfeit dolls and toys with excessive lead levels.

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Photo by Tom Fisk on Pexels.com

According to a Customs media release on September 14, 2018, CBP officers at the International Falls Port of Entry detained several rail containers transporting toys with counterfeit items and toys with prohibited lead levels.

Customs seized the first container of 2,459 die cast “transporter carry case” filled with toy cars for excessive lead levels.

The second container was seized for containing 5,460 fashion dolls that violated copyright protected markings. The media release claimed the suggested retail price was $139,145.

As Christmas and the holidays approaches, I believe this is only the beginning of more seizures. If you have had your shipments seized for intellectual property right violations, contact trade attorney David Hsu at 832-896-6288 or by email at dhsu@givensjohnston.com.

What is the Customs and Border Protection “Donations Acceptance Program”?

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Short answer – a change to the Homeland Security Act of 2002 allowed CBP and the US General Services Administration to accept real and personal property, money and non-personal services from the private and public sectors. Accepted donations may be used for port of entry construction, alternations, operations and maintenance activities.

According to a February 15, 2018 Customs media release, Proctor and Gamble (P&G) will donate testing devices to CBP officers and trade specialists to assist in determining the legitimacy of the P&G product in an attempt to reduce counterfeit goods entering the US marketplace.

The media release did not specify the type of testing device; however, the testing devices may be related to a 2014 patent filed by P&G for a chemical test kit to test for the presence of active components and qualities of the product that may be missing from counterfeits.

The DAP from P&G may be related to last year’s counterfeit Tide laundry detergent being sold in Austin, Texas at a price far below retail value. The low cost of the product and packaging written in Vietnamese may have been indications of the counterfeit nature of the Tide detergent.

If your imported P&G products have been seized by Customs, contact your experienced customs seizure attorney, David Hsu at 832-896-6288 or by email at dhsu@givensjohnston.com.

Baltimore CBP and the CPSC Seize Children’s “Activity Cubes” due to Potential Choking Hazard.

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Above photo is a screengrab from the Customs website showing the seized children’s mini activity cubes.

As the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) functions as the USA’s border security agency – CBP enforces hundreds of laws from different agencies. For example, CBP may seize imported automotive parts that violate Department of Transportation regulations or CBP may seize counterfeit and tainted foods products that violate Food and Drug Administration rules.

On January 15th, CBP officers in Baltimore examined a shipment of toys valued at $5,600 from Hong Kong and submitted samples of the toys to the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC). CBP officers initially sent this sample to the CPSC because the toys appeared to contain potential choking hazards.

CPSC subsequently tested the activity cubes and determined the toys violated the small parts requirement of the Federal Hazardous Substances Act [15 USC §1263]. A copy of the FHSA can be found at this link: https://www.cpsc.gov/s3fs-public/fhsa.pdf

Unfortunately for this importer, they won’t be able to get their goods and may face further penalties from Customs. If you have had your imports seized by Customs due to DOT, CPSC, FDA or any of the other alphabet soup of government agency regulations, please call David Hsu at 832.896.6288, or by email at dhsu@givensjohnston.com, free consultations.

Importers of “durable infant or toddler products” now includes children’s folding chairs and stools.

pexels-photo-374756.jpegIn early December, the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) approved the final rules for Safety Standard for Children’s Folding Chairs and Stools. The final amended rule to 16 CFR Part 1130 includes children’s folding chairs and stools.

As indicated in the Federal Register, the “Commission considers folding stools to be a subset of folding chairs. The configuration of children’s folding chairs and folding stools are similar”. As the designs are similar, the Commission found the potential hazards in the folding mechanism are also similar.

The final rule amends section 1130.2(a)(13) to make clear that children’s folding chairs and children’s folding stools are now considered durable infant or toddler products.

The CPSC gives suppliers 6 months to come into compliance with the new standard and the final rule will apply to products manufactured or imported on or after June 15, 2018.

Producers and importers of infant and toddler products must follow safety standards to minimize the risk to children using the products. Additionally, the nation’s border security agency, CBP, enforces over 400 laws regulated by about 40 different agencies (such as the CPSC) at 328 air, land and sea ports of entry.

If you or your company receives any notices from CBP or the CPSC and you would like a free consultation, please do not hesitate to contact David Hsu at 713.932.1540 or by email at dhsu@givensjohnston.com