Questions and answers about Assists – Tooling

  • Engineering assists

    QUESTION: We have engineers located outside of the U.S. who do our design work and other engineering responsibilities that are necessary to produce the goods that we import into the U.S. These expenses are charged back to us in the U.S. with a VAT percentage and profit percentage value added.  Should the VAT and profit value […]


    QUESTION: If an Importer is providing tooling to a foreign producer to manufacture parts, and that producer sells/sends the parts to another country, and unrelated factory, to be incorporated into the imported good, how would that be accounted for in the import value of the finished good when entered into the U.S.? Is it an […]


    QUESTION: We provide our overseas non-related manufacturers with tooling.  Some time later, the manufacturer will send a single article, or miniscule quantity express consignment for our US team to approve its quality, fit, etc.  On these express consignment shipments, we are not the importer of record, the ECC is.  If approved, the manufacturer will start […]


    QUESTION: We are exploring a business opportunity that may involve an assist/dutiable charges. This is the first time we’ve engaged in such a transaction, so I want to be sure that I understand what the correct process is to account for the cost of tooling/equipment that is owned by a U.S. third party. Company A, […]


    QUESTION: Would the following scenario be considered an assist? If so, how should this be reported on the commercial invoice and what type of documentation should be retained (invoice for fabric and shipping)? A US wholesale apparel company enters into a contract to manufacture and import shirts for a US retailer. Under the terms of […]


    QUESTION: We currently have many tooling’s in China. We have declared all of these on importation of the original production orders of these items into the USA.  We now plan to move these to another country.  Am I correct in that we only have to declare the international freight to the new country, as an […]


    QUESTION: We a buying a tool/mold from a vendor overseas.  They will create the mold, then ship us 2-5 sample widgets as a test of the mold.  After sample approval, they will send us the mold for long-term production in the US. It seems like we would need to add the cost of the mold […]


    QUESTION: We, as the US importer, paid a supplier in Korea $100,000 to make a new tool which makes parts for us.  The tool was located in Korea at their manufacturing facility and the tool makes parts that import to us into the United States. The parts carry a 3.5% general rate of duty. However, […]

  • 9817 Prototype Provision and Assist

    QUESTION: I found a similar question that was asked back in March 2019, but scenario is slightly different.  Therefore, looking to get feedback on the below scenario.  Scenario: 1). “Foreign” Company A sells prototype parts to “US” Company B 2). Company B will act as IOR 3). Parts meet all provisions of the 9817 Prototype […]


    QUESTION: Our company purchased fabrics from an unrelated supplier and provided these fabrics to 3 different unrelated foreign manufacturers free of charge. The fabrics were used to manufacture 37 different types of chairs. Our company paid all freight costs to deliver the fabrics from the fabric supplier’s U.S. & Europe locations to the 3 foreign […]

  • Assists and Computed Value, Deductive Value, Identical Goods Value, Fallback Method

    QUESTION: I was re-reading the different valuation models along with the definition of “assists”. It seems that assists are ONLY added to the customs value of goods imported under the Transaction Value methodology.  So, the value of an assist does not have to be added if using Valuation Methods 2-6, correct? =========== Answers: Yes, but […]

  • Dutiable Assist on DDP Transactions

    QUESTION: Scenario  US manufacturer purchases parts from a supplier in China, along with tooling that is used in the production of those parts in China.  The supplier ships the parts to their own warehouse located in Canada.  No further alteration takes place there; it’s strictly a storage facility.  When the US manufacturer is ready for […]