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Newsletter

Mandatory Deadlines For C-TPAT Participants Or Loss Of Status And Benefits Under The New Security Link Portal

June 22, 2006

CBP has posted important deadlines for C-TPAT participants to comply with or lose C-TPAT status.

The information was posted to the CBP website of updated questions and answers regarding its new, mandatory C-TPAT Internet Application and Communications Portal (referred to as the C-TPAT Security Link Portal), which became effective June 1, 2006. This Portal is designed to enhance and improve the processing and communication for all C-TPAT certified members. This Portal can be viewed at the following link: http://www.cbp.gov/border-security/ports-entry/cargo-security/c-tpat-customs-trade-partnership-against-terrorism

Deadlines

C-TPAT members (participants) must access and update C-TPAT Security Link Portal information by either August 1, 2006, or September 1, 2006, depending upon the type of entity. For importers, the due date is August 1, 2006, and for brokers the due date is September 1, 2006. The deadlines for various entities can be viewed on the CBP website. The Portal account can be created/modified only by the member's point of contact (“POC”). At least one company officer must be designated as a company contact. Moreover, only a company employee or officer can be designated as the POC. However, outside consultants can be added as a contact point, but cannot be the primary contact point.

Enrollment Category

Security Profile Update Due

Importers

before August 1, 2006

U.S./Canada Highway Carriers

before August 1, 2006

U.S./Mexico Highway Carriers

before August 1, 2006

Rail Carriers

before August 1 ,2006

Sea Carriers

before August 1, 2006

Air Carriers

before August 1, 2006

NVOCCs, OTIs, and Air Freight Consolidators 1

before September 1, 2006

U.S. Marine Port Authority/Terminal Operators

before September 1, 2006

Foreign Manufacturers

before September 1, 2006

Licensed Brokers

before September 1, 2006

Loss of C-TPAT Membership For Failure to Update

The failure to update information by August 1, 2006 (for importers), will result in the termination of C-TPAT membership and all C-TPAT benefits, including reduced and expedited CBP examinations and the Free And Secure Trade (“FAST”) lane access. Moreover, the company will be removed from C-TPAT, and will be required to re-apply for the C-TPAT program.

Information To Update

After logging onto the Portal, the following two principal areas must be updated:

1. Company profile: This requires an update of all company information as required (type of business of the company, years in business, etc.).

2. Security profile: This is the most challenging section, and requires the company to provide narrative descriptions of the security procedures in place for each section of the profile. Thus, if the company has not already done so, the company must draft these responses prior to updating them on the Portal.

A yearly self-assessment of the company's Supply Chain Security Profile will now also be required as a part of the company's commitment to the C-TPAT program.

Other Features On the Portal

The Portal also includes the two following sections:

1. Documents menu: In this section of the portal, Customs will advise you as to which documents your company, as a C-TPAT member, can access or exchange in order to assist you with the program.

2. Discussion items: This is a section of the Portal where C-TPAT participants can attend discussions among C-TPAT members or send messages to other C-TPAT members about their experiences with the program.

The PowerPoint Presentation Summary

Customs has posted to its website a PowerPoint presentation on how to access and update a participant's profile on the Portal. Click on the following link, and then click Applying to C-TPAT.

http://www.cbp.gov/border-security/ports-entry/cargo-1security/c-tpat-customs-trade-partnership-against-terrorism

This should be reviewed prior to logging onto the Portal.

In light of the fact that updating the Portal will require some preparation, we urge C-TPAT participants to begin this process as promptly as possible.

If you have any questions regarding the issues raised in this newsletter, please contact George Tuttle at (415) 288-0425 or by email at grt@tuttlelaw.com, or Stephen Spraitzar at (415) 288-0427 or sss@tuttlelaw.com.

Stephen S. Spraitzar and George R. Tuttle are attorneys with the Law Offices of George R. Tuttle in San Francisco. The information in this article is general in nature, and is not intended to constitute legal advice or to create an attorney-client relationship with respect to any event or occurrence, and may not be considered as such.

Copyright © 2006 by Tuttle Law Offices. 

All rights reserved.  Information has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable.  However, because of the possibility of human or mechanical error by our offices or by others, we do not guarantee the accuracy, adequacy, or completeness of any information and are not responsible for any errors, omissions, or for the results obtained from the use of such information.

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