As a law firm deeply rooted in the global business community, our attorneys are knowledgeable about the various agencies involved in regulating the import of goods into the United States. In addition to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), imported products are subject to certain guidelines from the FDA, CPSC, DOT, USDA, and others. Compliance with these requirements may seem complex and time consuming, but noncompliance will be far more costly.
FSMA Compliance and FDA-Regulated Goods
The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and other laws impose complex requirements on those who manufacture, import, export or distribute products such as foods, beverages, drugs, dietary supplements, cosmetics, and medical devices. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates these products, covering such issues as product development, testing, classification, best practices for manufacturing, advertising, labeling, supply chain security, and registration of production facilities.
Our importer clients work with the Dilendorf Law Firm to ensure compliance with FDS and FSMA requirements. Failure to abide by their requirements means risking enforcement actions such as detentions, product recalls, refusal of entry and costly liquidated damages. Dilendorf’s astute customs attorneys help clients understand the applicable requirements and meet these standards, while quickly responding to any unfavorable developments or claims.
Product Safety and the CPSC
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is the agency responsible for enforcement of product safety requirements, including the specific testing, certifications, and recordkeeping requirements on every type of imported good. Because goods that fail to comply with CPSC standards can be denied entry, destroyed, or seized, it is imperative that these requirements are met to avoid substantial fines, penalties, or product recalls.
Product safety is of paramount importance for importers, as any goods deemed hazardous can be extremely damaging to a company’s reputation and finances. Our customs and international trade attorneys work closely with importers to ensure that all safety regulations are followed.
Department of Transportation (DOT) Requirements
As cargo moves into, out of, or within the United States, it is subject to certain domestic and international laws governed by the Department of Transportation. These include the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act, the Warsaw Convention, and their associated regulatory policies pertaining to cargo transport, such as occupational and transportation safety guidelines, supply chain security, and lost, spoiled, or damaged goods.
The Dilendorf Law Firm works closely with carriers, shippers, customs brokers, warehouses, third-party logistics providers, and others, helping them understand and comply with DOT provisions to avoid potential shipment delays and penalties.
The Department of Agriculture, which regulates trade of most agricultural products, sets forth a number of regulations, requirements, and restrictions, ranging from organic certification to country of origin marking. When importers set up an agricultural product for domestic and international trade, it must be done through specific provisions, such as fresh produce marketing agreements, consignment agreements, grower’s agent agreements and other distribution channel arrangements, all of which are subject to the Uniform Commercial Code and United Nations’ requirements related to the international sale of goods.
The regulatory specialists at the Dilendorf Law Firm assist clients in several areas related to USDA compliance, including strategic business planning, product development and testing, government inspections and product recalls. Our experienced team handles agreements and disputes related to agricultural and food products, including carrier claims, regulatory issues, and other matters.
Other agencies also provide oversight of imported goods, most notably U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the National Marine Fisheries Service. Many foreign countries and individual U.S. states impose their own requirements for imported goods, as well.
The Dilendorf Law Firm’s knowledgeable team helps clients to identify and comply with all the various requirements from agencies involved in the regulation of imported goods, including the FDA, USDA, CPSC, DOT and others.
- Foods Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) – U.S. Food & Drug Administration
- Frequently Asked Questions on FSMA – U.S. Food and Drug Administration
- FSMA Final Rule on Produce Safety – U.S. Food and Drug Administration
- Consumer Product Safety Act (CPSA) – U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
- Regulations, Mandatory Standards and Bans – U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
- Carriage of Goods by Sea Act – U.S. House of Representatives
- Warsaw Convention – The International Air Transport Association
- Importing Products – U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service