MONTREAL, April 12, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - In this busy period in terms of postal volumes, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has a few tips for anyone expecting to receive international mail items in order to facilitate the processing of as many items as possible.
All postal parcels from abroad are forwarded to one of the three CBSA mail processing centers (Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal). In each of these facilities, border services officers filter the mail to determine whether goods qualify to enter the country and if duties and taxes are due.
Checking mail items
- When an item is mailed to Canada from abroad, a customs declaration form must be completed, indicating the name and address of the recipient, description of the contents, and the value of the goods.
- Upon arrival in Canada, all international mail items weighing 30 grams or more are presented by Canada Post to CBSA to be checked.
- CBSA officers inspect each piece of mail to determine its admissibility and confirm whether it contains dutiable or taxable goods.
- A further inspection of the item may also be conducted.
- Any gift to someone living in Canada is duty- and tax-free, provided its value is CDN$60 or less. For a gift of over CDN$60, applicable duties and taxes will be collected on the difference between the value of the gift and CDN$60.
Prohibited and Controlled Goods
You cannot import goods such as the following: child pornography; obscene material or hate propaganda; illegal drugs; prohibited weapons; animals belonging to endangered species, including parts of such animals and all products made from their fur, skin, feathers, or bones; drugs regulated by Health Canada and foods regulated by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
If prohibited goods are discovered, they will be disposed of and the importer may face penalties.
Here are some examples of goods that are controlled in mail items: firearms (including imitation and replica firearms); replica or inert munitions; intoxicating beverages; drugs and other controlled substances; medical materials and biological samples; perishable items; animals; dangerous goods.
If controlled goods are discovered, CBSA will hold the items and inform you by mail that you need the proper import documents before the Agency can release them. CBSA also reminds that to minimize delays during busier periods, please have your items sent early and help the sender ensure that all customs forms are properly filled out. Having all applicable documentation with you at pickup will also help minimize out-processing delays.
Additional information on importing is available in the I Declare guide on the CBSA website (www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca) or by contacting the Border Information Service, an automated telephone service that is accessible at all times and provides general information on border services (calls within Canada : 1-800-959-2036).
For further information: