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Understanding the CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) Initiative

Understanding the CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) Initiative
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Latest Update (June 23, 2021)

What is CARM?

The CARM initiative will transform how the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) manages commercial goods being imported into Canada, including the collection of duties and taxes.


Release Dates & Features

The next phase of CARM will be implemented in two stages:

  • Register for the CARM Client Portal (CCP) and create your business account (limited to commercial importers, customs brokers, and trade consultants)
  • Delegate access to your customs brokers (i.e., Delegation of Authority). 
  • Start managing commercial import transactions through the CCP, including CBSA monthly Statement of Accounts (SOAs) 
  • Gain access to CBSA HTS classification and duty/tax estimator tools, ability to request and track customs rulings
  • Get new direct electronic payment options with the CBSA

The following functionality will be available via the CCP:

  • CCP registration for all Trade Chain Partners (TCPs)
  • Registration for Canadian Business Number (BN) and CBSA programs  
  • Surety bond application for Release Prior to Payment (RPP) Privilege
  • Commercial Accounting Declaration (CAD) – a new digital document for accounting imported goods with the CBSA
  • New billing cycles and additional payment options with the CBSA

How does it affect me?

The self-service CARM Client Portal (CCP) is changing how the commercial trade community will transact business with the CBSA. Commercial importers are required to take the necessary steps to continue to import goods into Canada in this next phase of CARM.

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What do I need to do?

Depending on whether you are a FedEx Express or FedEx Trade Networks (FedEx Trade Networks may provide brokerage services for commercial goods imported using FedEx Ground and FedEx Freight) customer, the steps you need to take may differ. Please select the option that describes which FedEx services you currently use. If you use both FedEx Express and FedEx Trade Networks, you will need to complete the steps provided for both entities.

We will update steps here as new requirements for Release 2 are firmed up, so consider bookmarking this page! 

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Additional Information & Resources

Here are some of the key changes for Commercial Importers (resident and non-resident).

New commercial importers will require a valid BN and Import-Export (RM) program account number prior to importing goods into Canada. For information on how to obtain a BN and RM number, please visit the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) website.

  • Creating a CARM Client Portal (CCP) business account will be required to import goods into Canada and enable businesses to transact directly with the CBSA.
  • A commercial importer must designate a Business Account Manager (BAM) from their company to create and manage their CCP business account.
  • The BAM must create a user account and input the importer’s company information to complete the setup of a CCP business account.
  • The BAM will be asked to provide recent transaction information contained in the importer’s Daily Notices (DNs) and monthly Statement of Account (SOA).
  • Once the CCP business account is set up, additional BAMs can be designated to assist in the management of the account.
  • The importer’s BAM must grant this authorization to their third-party service providers (e.g., customs brokers) to enable them to manage their commercial importation activities via the CCP.
  • In Spring 2022, only an importers’ delegated customs broker(s) will be able to perform customs entry filing and duty and tax assessment services on their behalf.
  • Multiple customs brokers can be delegated to manage an importer’s commercial import activities.
  • The Delegation of Authority is an additional requirement and does not replace the current requirement for a Power of Attorney (POA) or General Agency Agreement (GAA) to act on an importer’s behalf. 
  • The RPP security posted by a customs broker will no longer extend to commercial importers who avail of their services starting in Release 2.
  • Commercial importers will need to post their own financial security (i.e., surety bond or cash deposit) to obtain the release of their goods, prior to the accounting and payment of any applicable duties and taxes with the CBSA.
  • Options to pay the CBSA directly are currently available through the CCP.
  • To avoid duplicate payment, any import duties and/or taxes accounted for by FedEx Express or FedEx Trade Networks should be paid to them (e.g., FedEx Invoice) and not directly to the CBSA, until Release 2 in Spring 2022.
  • Importers who are planning to pay the CBSA directly through the portal must advise FedEx Express or FedEx Trade Networks to avoid duplicate payments and unpaid broker invoices.

Casual/non-commercial importers (import goods that are not for sale or for business, industrial, commercial, occupational, or other similar uses) will not be subject to the aforementioned requirements.

We’ve compiled some important information to help you prepare for the upcoming changes. All instructional videos have been provided by the Canada Border Services Agency.

No current webinars or open-mic sessions scheduled.

Webinar Registration – CARM Client Portal Onboarding
Language Date/Time Registration Link
English

August 10th, 2021
1:00PM – 2:30PM EST

Register Now
English

August 10th, 2021
1:00PM – 2:30PM EST

Register Now
Open Mic Registration – Questions on CARM Client Portal Onboarding
Language Date/Time Registration Link
English

August 10th, 2021
1:00PM – 2:30PM EST

Register Now
English

August 10th, 2021
1:00PM – 2:30PM EST

Register Now
Title Description Link
CARM Client Portal Onboarding For a complete overview of the CCP onboarding process, watch a webinar recording hosted by the CBSA View or Download

The CBSA Video Tutorials can be found at here. These videos provide assistance with registering for and using the CCP. 

Video Description More Information
CARM Release 1 Playbook
Comprehensive overview and details on Release 1 CARM Client Portal functionality
How the trade community can prepare 
CARM Client Portal Onboarding Guide
Preparation for onboarding, setting up a portal account, and portal functionality details, including the Delegation of Authority process
CARM Client Portal Onboarding Guide
CBSA Information Sheet
Detailed steps for how to register your business on the new CCP and direct CBSA contact information for assistance
CBSA Information Sheet
Title Description
CARM Release 1 Playbook Comprehensive overview and details on Release 1 CARM Client Portal functionality
CARM Client Portal Onboarding Guide Preparation for onboarding, setting up a portal account, and portal functionality details, including the Delegation of Authority process
CBSA Information Sheet Detailed steps for how to register your business on the new CCP and direct CBSA contact information for assistance
CARM Infographic Download the CARM infographic for an overview of the CCP functionality
CBSA CARM Google Drive

View supporting materials developed by the CBSA, including:

CARM Client Portal Onboarding Information
CARM Solution Spotlight for onboarding to the new CARM Client Portal

Spotlight on Delegation of Authority
Key details, steps, and access levels (User roles)

CARM Billing Cycles
Summary of changes for each impacted clearance type (e.g., HVS, LVS, CLVS, etc.)

Financial Security for CARM
New bond requirement for Release Prior to Payment (RPP) privileges

Commercial Accounting Delegation
CARM Solution Spotlight on changes to formal corrections and adjustments due to the new CAD

CARM Personas and Guides Illustrates the changes and benefits of CARM for each persona (grouping of TCPs)
CARM LinkedIn Group Join the CARM LinkedIn Group

Frequently Asked Questions

If you are a FedEx Express or FedEx Trade Networks customer, you can review the FAQs to find answers to your CARM-related questions. FedEx Trade Networks may also act as the broker for some FedEx Ground and FedEx Freight customers. For more FAQs, visit the CBSA CARM website

The CCP was launched on May 25, 2021 but commercial importers are not mandated to register until Release 2 (Spring 2022), when all interactions with the CBSA will be done through the CCP. Businesses are encouraged to register and provide us with their Delegation of Authority before Release 2, to avoid shipment delays related to CARM.

Register for CCP

All CBSA trade chain partners (TCPs): Commercial Importers, Customs Brokers, Trade Consultants, Surety Companies, Carriers, Foreign producers/exporters, and industry professionals (e.g., lawyers, accountants, shipping agents).

Commercial importers will not be able to obtain the release of their imported goods with the CBSA and will be unable to request a customs broker to process the release on their behalf, starting in Release 2 (Spring 2022). 

The option to pay the CBSA directly is currently available under Release 1, however, payment for the applicable duties and/or taxes on shipments handled by FedEx Express should continue to be made to FedEx Express, also listed as Federal Express Canada Corporation (FedEx Express). Any payment made directly to the CBSA prior to Release 2 (Spring 2022) will result in a duplicate payment with the CBSA.

Beginning in Release 2 (Spring 2022), you will need to advise FedEx Express how you intend to pay your import duties and taxes for all shipments where FedEx Express acts as your customs broker. You cannot select different payment options for different shipments. Your options include:

  1. FedEx Express continues to pay on your behalf or;
  2. You pay the CBSA directly via the CCP

Additional documentation may also be required. If you decide to pay the CBSA directly for your import duties and taxes after Release 2, you will not receive an invoice from FedEx Express for those amounts.

Yes. Direct payment to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is an option, however it is not mandatory. FedEx Express will continue to accept payment on your behalf for importing commercial goods into Canada, including the collection of duties and taxes, until you provide notification that you would like to pay the CBSA directly.

Yes. Any outstanding invoices with FedEx Express will need to be paid to FedEx prior to Release 2 (Spring 2022). FedEx Express is required to pay for any duties and taxes we account on your behalf with the CBSA. If you pay CBSA through the CCP for a shipment handled by FedEx Express then this will incur a duplicate payment with the CBSA and you will need to request a refund from the CBSA by contacting the CARM Client Support Helpdesk (CCSH). 

The CCSH can be reached online using the client support contact form. If you experience any difficulties with the form, please contact the CBSA directly at 1.800.461.9999 and select option 2.

Once you create your CCP business account, you will begin receiving requests from your customs broker(s), including Federal Express Canada Corporation to confirm your business relationship. You will need to accept each request by granting each customs broker a specified level of access to your CCP business account depending on the import commercial activities each broker manages on your behalf.

For details, please read the CBSA CARM Solution Spotlight - Delegation of Authority.

If you have already created a CARM Client Portal (CCP) business account, you should receive your notification no later than June 25, 2021. If you create your CCP business account on or after June 25, 2021, the notification will appear when you log in to your account.

If you have a CCP business account and have not received a notification on or after June 25, 2021,

please contact the FedEx Clearance Helpline (CHL) at clearancehelpline@mail.fedex.com or 1.800.561.0268.

Please select 'all programs' for our access level and select 'submitted by Federal Express Canada Corporation' for our transaction visibility. In the future, if FedEx Express requires additional access and/or visibility, we will contact you directly to request the necessary changes.

Delegation of Authority is an additional requirement and does not replace the current requirement for a POA/GAA. This enables your customs broker to access your CCP business account and to manage your commercial importation activities. Access includes, but is not limited to, the accounting of any applicable duties and taxes with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). 

The POA/GAA authorizes your customs broker to act on your behalf for your customs/clearance activities.

Please request this information directly from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) by contacting the CARM Client Support Helpdesk (CCSH) via the online client support contact form and completing the form as follows:

  • Select “online portal support” as the topic for your inquiry from the drop-down menu
  • Select “CARM Client Portal – setting up my business account” as your question from the drop-down menu
  • Type in the following request in the detailed description field, “I would like to request to receive DNs and SOAs.”

Once the CBSA receives your request, they will contact you directly.

For technical issues with the form, please contact the CBSA directly at 1.800.461.9999 and select option 2.

Currently, a customs broker may release your goods using their own Release Prior to Payment (RPP) bond. RPP enables the release of imported goods, prior to accounting and payment of any applicable duties and taxes with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). After Release 2 (Spring 2022), the CBSA requires commercial importers to secure their own bond to maintain their RPP privilege.

If you do not have a bond starting Release 2 (Spring 2022), your imported goods may experience clearance delays or roadblocks under the new requirements. Customs brokers will be unable to process the release for your imported goods electronically (EDI) and would need to submit a manual/paper release request – you would also have the option to do a self-clearance directly with the CBSA (local office). In addition, you would be required to pay the CBSA directly for any applicable duties and/or taxes on your imported goods, in order to obtain the release.

The current process is detailed in the CBSA Memorandum D17-1-8 and is a completely manual/paper-based application requiring wet-signatures. You would be required to determine the appropriate amount of security for your commercial import transactions and submit the bond to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) via courier/registered mail.

This is currently done by working directly with a surety bond company.

Beginning CARM Release 2 (Spring 2022), you will be required to register/create a CCP business account to obtain a release from the CBSA for imported commercial goods.

You must complete the following steps for FedEx Express to process the release and to account for the duties and/or taxes assessed on your imported goods with the CBSA on your behalf:

  1. Register for the new CARM Client Portal (CCP). You will be required to designate a Business Account Manager (BAM) from your company who will be responsible for creating and managing the account. A GCKey or a Sign-in Partner are your keys to the CCP registration page.
  2. Sign in to the CCP and delegate authority to Federal Express Canada Corporation by accepting the notification you receive from us to confirm our business relationship, through the CCP. This information will help ensure FedEx Express can continue providing customs entry filing, and duty and tax assessment services on your behalf — and keep your shipments moving.
  3. Complete our Data Collection Form for FedEx Express. This information will help ensure FedEx Express can continue to accurately manage your imports under CARM, so you can focus on running your business.

Contact

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Contact the CBSA

For questions about CARM and for assistance in complying with the new CARM requirements, please contact the CBSA through the form below or call 1.800.461.9999.