customs question...would you take the risk?

  1. if you were ordering a bag from overseas & had the option of their declaring an artifically low value to avoid duty, would you take it? does anyone know (a) what duty costs, and (b) what happens if customs decides to open a package and changes its value? how common is that?

    anyone a customs expert here?? :shame:

    thanks so much!!
  2. Duty is about 10%. But ask yourself, what if it gets lost or damaged? Are you willing to eat the price of the bag?

  3. Hmmm...I know that if customs opens the box and discovers that the value of an item is a lot higher than the indicated value, then customs will just tax the recipient according to the market price of the item (no one goes to jail for this, because there are far too many parcels crossing borders and they can't possibly prove that all cases of mis-marked value are fraud). Plus for handbags it's a different story...unless the handbag is brand new and in mint condition, it's value varies so it's hard for customs people to determine a correct value for that; I find that (in those cases) they just tax according to the indicated value for used bags.
  4. I don't know about the US Customs....But my father used to be a French Customs Officer. He told me that the officers are perfectly trained and when they open a package and see the item...they know if it has been underestimated or not...
    It's the reason why lots of websites refuse to indicate a lower value....
  5. Nope, I wouldn't risk it. I don't like the idea of lying to an agency that can fine me lots of money anyway.

    Customs agents aren't dumb..
  6. Totally agree!!

    Just put what its actually worth on the customs form, chances are its going to slip through without your buyer being charged extra, anyways.
  7. It depends on how it is being shipped. Some shippers, like DHL will collect the tax from you. If it is coming through USPS, it is not likely to get a fee. Put the entire amount down. You are risking trouble any other way -- not worth the risk.
  8. It depends on how expensive the bag is....because that would affect your insurance. Not worth it, I would think.
  9. I wouldn't do it- you can't insure for more than you declare on customs, the item could be seized, and the shipping company you use even has the prerogative to ban you if they were to find out you've done this (since it is illegal).
  10. Hi ladies, I'm a former Customs and Immigration supervisory agent. It's not worth it - not only can the package be confiscated and you can be fined - your name could end up on what used to be called a "lookout list." My employment was several years ago, but it's best to try to avoid being on any type of Homeland security related list.