U.S. Customs

The means by which an importer, consignee, or other designated party may protest decisions, (usually regarding the duitable status of imported goods) made by a District Director of Customs. The importer files a protest and an application for further review on Customs Form 19 within 90 days after clearance. If the Customs Service denies a protest, an importer has the right to appeal the matter by filing a summons with the U.S. Court of International Trade within 180 days after denial of the protest. The rules of the court and other applicable statutes and precedents determine the course of Customs litigation.

While the Customs determination of duitable status is final for most purposes at the time of liquidation, a liquidation is not final until any protest which has been filed against it has been decided. Similarly, the administrative decision issued on a protest is not final until any litigation filed against it has been decided.

Entries must be purged within one year of the date of entry unless the liquidation needs to be extended for another one-year period not to exceed a total of four years from the date of entry. The Customs Service will suspend liquidation of an entry when required by statute or court order. A suspension will remain in effect until the issue is resolved. Notifications of extensions and suspensions are given to importers, surety companies and customs brokers who are parties to the transaction.

See entry; liquidation.


Legal procedure noting the refusal of the drawee to accept a bill of exchange (protest for non-acceptance) or to pay it (protest for non-payment). Essential in order to keep the right of recourse on the endorser.

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