Anybody here order stuff from outside the US?


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IRONFIST
August 3, 2007, 08:12 PM
The reason why I ask is that I want to order an item(I believe it's from the UK), and I am now worried about import duties and taxes. This part isn't expensive($80 + 20$ shipping), but the company involved doesn't collect any duties or taxes. They say that is my responsibility, because each area that they ship to around the world is different.

I live in Oregon and we have no state sales tax, but I am worried that if I buy this part, I will be handed a ginormous bill when the shipment arrives. So, has anyone here done something like this in the past and what should I expect to pay, if anything? BTW, this is a just a simple metal part and isn't electronic/electrical in nature. Thanks for any help or advice.

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mrsig
August 3, 2007, 08:32 PM
I have ordered many items from Europe (brushless motors, LEGO, etc...). I have also shipped all over the world (LEGO). The post office, FedEx, or UPS will pay the duty, if any, and bill you. I have only had to pay duty on large purchases.

- Sig

CWL
August 3, 2007, 08:59 PM
Duties, you only pay if you get caught. US Customs do not have time to check inside every parcel that gets sent over here, but if yours does get flagged, you will be notified by the carrier that Import Duties have been assessed and need to be paid before the shipment can be released to you. This is only 10-20% of the value of your shipment so you needn't be too worried. It's happened to me a few times.

Just don't let this be some sort of banned item (switchblade, AK receivers, Cubanos, Absinthe, opium seeds, etc.)

MD_Willington
August 3, 2007, 09:01 PM
For firearms items, as long as you're under $100 you do not need to file a form 6... and if you do mark a form 6, specify for your own personal use.

matt87
August 3, 2007, 09:09 PM
Absinthe is banned in the US? Wow!

4v50 Gary
August 3, 2007, 09:16 PM
Ordered a lot of books from overseas (South Africa, Australia, England, Germany) and recently, haven't been zinged even though some orders were well into the hundreds.

Vodka7
August 3, 2007, 09:36 PM
Entry state/destination doesn't affect the rate you get charged. As a loose rule, anything under $200 that doesn't look insane will just get passed right through customs. I've ordered all kinds of stuff from Europe/Asia without ever getting hit.

If you're really worried, you can try wading through the HTS here - http://www.usitc.gov/tata/hts/bychapter/index.htm

If you're still worried after that, I'd recommend going with a seller that has a good reputation for getting packages through to US citizens. How they declare your item on the package can give it a better chance of being passed over for inspection.

SG Merc
August 3, 2007, 10:12 PM
Just ask the person/company you're dealing with how they send packages internationally. If the item is marked as a "gift" on the customs declarations form then you won't have to pay an import fee.

TIMC
August 3, 2007, 10:40 PM
The repro PU scope for my 91/30 Nagant came from the Ukraine. I had no problems with that transaction. That was the only thing I have ordered from outside the USA.

Sunray
August 3, 2007, 11:07 PM
"...do not need to file a form 6..." You're right. You don't need a Form 6. A Form 6 is for the temporary importation of a firearms for hunting or target shooting. It has nothing to do with importing parts.
"...item is marked as a "gift"..." That'd be fraud. No business will do it.
"...company involved doesn't collect..." And they never will if they're not in the U.S. Her Majesty's Government doesn't care if you pay foreign taxes and duties or not. They don't get any of it. You are responsible for paying duty and taxes.
"...Absinthe is banned in the US?..." It's illegal to make or sell, but you can import it. It horrendously expensive though. One site wants $199US for a .7 litre bottle. Very high alcohol content. 80 to 140 proof. 40 to 70 % alcohol.
"...notified by the carrier that Import Duties have been assessed and need to be paid..." Exactly.

SG Merc
August 3, 2007, 11:16 PM
"...item is marked as a "gift"..." That'd be fraud. No business will do it.

Erm, ok, there are no businesses breaking the law ... sure.

MIL-DOT
August 4, 2007, 01:29 AM
i used to order bicycling jerseys and other related stuff from a company in ireland. shipping was (lots) faster and (lots) cheaper than ordering from sportsmansguide, and i never got stuck with any import taxes. i forget the details, but obviously,different companies and countries will have different policies, but total value and oddly the shipping option you chose had an affect.

iiibdsiil
August 4, 2007, 01:59 AM
I've ordered all sorts of (non-gun) stuff foreign. It has ALWAYS been marked gift, with a value of under $100.

GRIZ22
August 4, 2007, 02:55 AM
Ordered a lot of books from overseas (South Africa, Australia, England, Germany) and recently, haven't been zinged even though some orders were well into the hundreds.


There is no import duty on books or works or art that's why you never had to pay any.

Usually Customs imposes a flat 10% on most things ordered through the mail. However they usually don't bother to collect it until the value reaches $100 or more (I'm not sure of the value cutoff at this time. FEDEX and UPS has a duty collection charge figured into their shipping fees. The USPS adds on a flat charge of about $3.50 for collecting the duty.

They say that is my responsibility, because each area that they ship to around the world is different.


You can't expect anyone to keep up with Customs regulations all over the world. It's hard enough for people in Customs. Being the value is only $80 I doubt that they will bother collecting any duty at all. It costs more to collect it than they get.

mp510
August 4, 2007, 01:21 PM
I have bought a lot of small stuff from overseas (knives, numismatic items, small militaria items, a couple books- stuff like that), and I have never had any problems. AI only have had one package opened by customs, and since everything was legal, nothing disappeared. Nothing high value, and I have never been hit with any duties.

Detritus
August 4, 2007, 02:46 PM
Absinthe is banned in the US? Wow!

it is not banned, but like many gun laws, the law(s) relating to it and their interpretation by US Customs and/or ATF (it IS alcohol, so they get a shot at the regs) is convoluted and self-contradictory. So most european makers that produce a US legal product simply don't wanna deal with the hassle..

actual law bans any drink with a thujone (once thought a hallucinogen) content of more than 10ppm from import, or production for sale and consumption. (most quality absinthe falls below that threshold)

the publications given out by Customs and Border Protection on the other hand are in error and state that Absinthe is banned by name (with no mention of thujone content), as well as any drink made from Artemisia Absinthium, but does not cite which law(s) prohibit it.

basicly it's like certain ATF rulings on firearms, to "get things straightened out" would require someone willing to be a test case and call BS, then go before the courts with an informed high power enough lawyer to prove BS. and until then for the common joe it's just too much trouble to deal with.

Cosmoline
August 4, 2007, 02:58 PM
I've never had any problem with parts. Obviously there are rules for importing arms. But the duties, to the extent they apply at all, generally do not apply to small transactions. The main thing you need to worry about is dealing with someone in an "iffy" nation we don't have any trade agreements with. In such a case you could be violating a ban or get socked with a big fee. The UK, though, has been on our good list for a long time.

The only time I ran into troubles was trying to send a dog to a certain Arabic nation and I found out the gobment would not allow it.

TallPine
August 4, 2007, 03:37 PM
There is no import duty on books or works or art that's why you never had to pay any.

Good! I was starting to wonder about the music CD I ordered from Scotland a couple years back, and if the Customs Dept was going to be doing a 3am raid on me. ;)

What if I think an AK with wood stocks is a work of art...? :D


The only time I ran into troubles was trying to send a dog to a certain Arabic nation and I found out the gobment would not allow it.

Their govt or ours...?

fjolnirsson
August 4, 2007, 03:56 PM
I order some of my business supplies from Canada, and have not had any problem...I'm in Oregon, by the way.

mp510
August 4, 2007, 07:52 PM
There is no import duty on books or works or art that's why you never had to pay any.
The 'works of art' is very stiffly defined, and some of the new age, non-traditional, decorative fine arts items have been found to be subject to duties on those grounds.

GRIZ22
August 4, 2007, 10:23 PM
The 'works of art' is very stiffly defined, and some of the new age, non-traditional, decorative fine arts items have been found to be subject to duties on those grounds.


Where the "work of art" comes from also determines if there is duty on the item. The island countries in the Carribean and other developing nations are given favored status which means no duty on anything made there. It's suppose to help their economy develop.

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