U.S. Code of Federal Regulations
Regulations most recently checked for updates: Jan 19, 2021
(a) Persons who may use procedure. Any person, except a nonresident seaman, airman, or person engaged in similar employment, who intends to take effects of foreign origin abroad may register such articles before departure from the United States in order to facilitate their identification on return to the United States. Only articles of foreign origin having serial numbers or other distinctive, permanently affixed unique markings can be registered.
(b) Procedures for registration. Applicants for registration of articles of foreign origin shall present the articles, together with a completed, but unsigned, Customs Form 4457, or its electronic equivalent, which may be obtained in advance of departure, to a Customs officer. After the Customs officer has examined the articles and verified their description, he shall have the applicant sign the form. The Customs officer shall then sign the form and return it to the applicant for presentation on return of the articles. Customs form 4455, or its electronic equivalent, may be required in any case in which Customs form 4457, or its electronic equivalent, will not adequately serve the purpose of registration.
(c) Presentation on return and reuse. The form shall be presented to the Customs officer when the registered articles are returned to the United States. The form shall be valid for reuse as long as the document is legible to identify the registered articles.
(a) General. Persons arriving from foreign countries will be divided into two classes for Customs purposes:
(1) Residents of the United States returning from abroad, and
(2) All other persons, hereinafter referred to as nonresidents.
(b) Status as returning resident. Citizens of the United States, or persons who have formerly resided in the United States, (including American citizens who are residents of American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, or the Virgin Islands of the United States) will be deemed residents of the United States returning from abroad within the meaning of “residents” as used in Chapter 98, Subchapter IV, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (19 U.S.C. 1202), in the absence of satisfactory evidence that they have established a home elsewhere. The residence of a minor child will be presumed to be the residence of the child's parents.
(c) Status as nonresident. Any person arriving in the United States who is not a resident of the United States or who, though a resident of the United States, is not returning from abroad, will be treated for the purpose of these regulations as a nonresident.
(d) Optional claim of nonresident status. Any person arriving in the United States who would otherwise be considered a returning resident, may claim at his option the status of a nonresident if he intends to remain in the United States for only a short period of time before returning abroad. If the status as a nonresident claimed by an arriving person is allowed, the procedures in § 148.8 will be followed.
Passengers' baggage and effects and purchases of officers and crewmembers landed in the United States from vessels which have transited the Panama Canal are subject to Customs examination and treatment in the same manner as arrivals from any other foreign country.
(a) Generally. Articles shall be considered as accompanying a passenger or brought in by him if the articles arrive on the same vessel, vehicle, or aircraft on the same date as that of his arrival in the United States.
(b) Baggage shipped as freight. Articles in baggage shipped as freight on a bill of lading or airway bill shall be considered as accompanying a passenger when the baggage arrives on the conveyance on which he arrives in the United States.
(c) Precleared articles. Articles in baggage, or in baggage shipped as freight, shall be considered as accompanying a passenger if examined at an established preclearance station and the baggage is hand-carried, checked or manifested on the conveyance on which he arrives in the United States.
(d) Automobiles. An automobile which arrives on the same mode of conveyance on the same date as a passenger arrives in the United States shall be considered as accompanying him.
(e) Misdirected baggage. Baggage which arrives on the same mode of conveyance ahead of, or after a passenger, shall be treated as accompanying him if it is fully evident to the examining officer from the circumstances that:
(1) The passenger intended the baggage to arrive with him; and
(2) It was misdirected through no fault of the passenger.
Subject to any applicable exemption from entry requirements, articles imported as baggage but not passed under a baggage declaration or under the procedure provided in § 148.6 for unaccompanied shipments of effects subject to personal exemptions shall be entered in the same manner as a cargo importation of like goods. In making regular entry for articles imported in baggage, the value of articles entitled to free entry under subheadings 9804.00.10, or 9804.00.45, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (19 U.S.C. 1202), shall be disregarded in determining whether formal or informal entry is required.
(a) Declaration to support free entry. When effects claimed to be free of duty under subheadings 9804.00.10, 9804.00.20, 9804.00.25, 9804.00.35 or 9804.00.45, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) (19 U.S.C. 1202), do not accompany the importer on his arrival in the United States or are forwarded in bond, a declaration of the importer on Customs Form 3299, or its electronic equivalent, shall be required to support the claim for free entry. However, an oral declaration may be accepted in lieu of a written declaration on Customs Form 3299, for effects of a resident which are free of duty under subheadings 9804.00.10 or 9804.00.45. Effects of returning residents entitled to free entry under subheadings 9804.00.10 or 9804.00.45 (except automobiles and other vehicles of residents returning from countries other than Canada or Mexico) need not be itemized if a written declaration is required.
(b) Exemption from entry. If the port director is satisfied that an entry would serve no good purpose, none need be required, but evidence of ownership for Customs purposes, such as a carrier's certificate or properly endorsed bill of lading, shall be required with the declaration. Such exemption from entry may also be applied with respect to household effects or tools of trade entitled to free entry (see §§ 148.52 and 148.53 respectively) which are unaccompanied or forwarded in bond.
Articles in passengers' baggage on which duties due are not paid and baggage not claimed within a reasonable time shall be treated as unclaimed and sent to general order.
A person claiming the status of a nonresident upon arrival for a short visit in the United States before returning abroad may import articles free of duty under subheadings 9804.00.20, 9804.00.25, 9804.00.30, 9804.00.35, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (19 U.S.C. 1202), in accordance with the following procedure:
(a) The person claiming the status shall agree to export all such articles upon his departure from the United States, except articles imported as gifts under subheading 9804.00.30, and articles consumed during his visit;
(b) When required to do so, the person claiming the status shall list all articles of substantial value which he is importing on Customs Form 4455, or its electronic equivalent in duplicate, noting thereon the expected duration of his visit. He shall present the completed form to the inspecting officer who will initial both copies and return the duplicate to him;
(c) Upon his departure from the United States at the completion of his visit, the person claiming the status of a nonresident shall present to a Customs officer the duplicate copy of Customs Form 4455, or its electronic equivalent initialed by the inspecting officer, and the articles listed thereon shall be subject to inspection; and
(d) If he decides not to return abroad, the person claiming the status shall immediately notify the director of the port of entry. The port director will advise him of the amount of duties and taxes due by reason of his failure to return abroad.