Ultimate consignee is the party who will actually receive the item for the end-use designated. A bank, freight forwarder, forwarding agent or other intermediary may not be identified as the ultimate consignee. Government purchasing organizations are the sole exception to this requirement. This type of entity may be identified as the government entity that is the actual ultimate consignee in those instances when the items are to be transferred to the government entity that is the actual end-user, provided the actual end-user and end-use is clearly identified or the additional documentation attached to the application.
An issue of occasional concern is the "ultimate consignee" designation of Customs and Border Protection. Customs has the right to scrutinize an important transaction to determine which party is the ultimate consignee. In some cases, purchasing or buying agents services will act as the "importer of record", affecting clearance and delivery to the ultimate consignee. However, Customs might construe that the actual "importer of record" is not the buying or purchasing agent and is actually the ultimate consignee.
The policy for ultimate consignee number
- US-based ultimate consignees: The appropriate ultimate consignee identification number for US-based ultimate consignees is defined as either an Internal Revenue Service employer identification number or a Social Security number. US based ultimate consignees are not to be identified with CBP-issued ultimate consignee identification number. If a US based ultimate consignee does not have either an Internal Revenue Service employer identification number or a Social Security number, he or she must obtain one for any shipments that require the ultimate consignee identification number.
- Foreign-based ultimate consignees: in the limited instances in which imported merchandise is consigned to an ultimate consignee that is not based in the United States, the ultimate consignee must be identified with a CBP-issued ultimate consignee identification number for formal entries, or in the case of informal entries, including consolidated entry lines with a value less than $2000, may be identified with either a CBP-issued ultimate consignee identification number or the name and address of the foreign-based ultimate consignee. CBP-issued ultimate consignee identification number are only to be used to identify foreign-based ultimate consignees and must be based on the name and address of the foreign-based ultimate consignee.
Single transaction statement from ultimate consignee
Where an application to export a commodity involves a single-transaction, a statement must be submitted certifying to the following facts. Such statements may be submitted on Form IT-842, or in the form of a letter, wire or cable. Statements from the ultimate consignee by wire or cable may be accepted even though not signed manually.
If the ultimate consignee intends to distribute or resell, such statement must either contain assurance that distribution and resale will be made only in the country named as ultimate destination or must name all of the other countries in which resale or distribution will be made.
- Commerce and Foreign Trade Parts 2018, p.552
- T.A. Cook 2010, p74
- T.A. Cook 2010, p.127
- L.C. Kendall 2012 p.248
- T.A. Cook 2014, p.188
- Commerce and Foreign Trade Parts, (2018), Government Publishing, Washington.
- Cook T.A., (2010), Managing Global Supply Chains, CRC Press, New York.
- Cook T.A., (2014), Mastering the Business of Global Trade, CRC Press, London.
- Kendall L.K., (2012), The Business of Shipping, Springer Science & Business Media, London.
- Sparks A., (2013), Steel Carriage by Sea, CRC Press, New York.
Author: Brygida Mordarska