U.S. Customs & International Trade

Gunster’s U.S. Customs & International Trade attorneys represent domestic and foreign-owned companies engaged in international commerce. We are skilled in advising on the challenges associated with the billions of dollars of imports and exports that flow into the U.S. annually. We are committed to working with clients to ensure customs clearance of the delivery of merchandise, ranging from machinery and equipment; to medical devices, pharmaceuticals and drugs; to foods and beverages; to plastics, chemicals and metals.

Among our clients are importers, exporters, customs brokers, international freight forwarders and other commercial enterprises involved in the international supply chain – and for whom we provide legal counsel regarding regulatory compliance and enforcement by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Our team is well-versed in dealing with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-regulated products, such as food, dietary supplements and cosmetics. We are experienced in overcoming the obstacles associated with detained or refused merchandise, and advise on the submission of petitions for removal from FDA Import Alerts.

Our team provides legal counsel on Global Entry applications and appeals, tariff classifications, and duty preference programs, as well as country-of-origin marking and labeling. We advise on trade-related disclosures, protests, restrictive quotas, detentions, seizures, forfeitures penalties and liquidated damages claims – which can result in serious roadblocks to progress. We also work with clients to determine eligibility under preferential trade programs such as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), and numerous bilateral and multilateral trade agreements. Moreover, we assess and design training programs to comply with federal agency requirements.

Gunster’s attorneys regularly handle legal issues involving licensing, investigations, sanctions and penalties issued by U.S. agencies such as the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), and the U.S. Department of State’s Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC). We also advise on problem-solving pertaining to penalties issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for hazardous materials or dangerous goods transported by air.

Gunster’s U.S. Customs & International Trade practice is supported by the firm’s experienced transportation law team which focuses on resolving commercial disputes and litigation in state and federal courts involving the importation, exportation or transportation of merchandise. We are skilled in advocating complex issues under the Carmack Amendment, Carriage of Goods by Sea Act, shipping delay and demurrage issues, rate disputes, and a variety of tort claims, as well as in addressing the different types of transportation challenges and options for risk reduction.


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