On December 29, 2009, CBP published a final rule amending its regulations to extend the blanket withdrawal procedure for duty-free merchandise under certain circumstances, and to expand and create a uniform time period for Class 9 warehouse proprietors to file an entry, provide written confirmation of certain shortages, overages and damages, and to pay duties, taxes and interest on overages and shortages. The final rule amends the regulations to align them with actual business practices.

Specifically, the final rule allows the appropriate Field Operations director to extend the blanket withdrawal procedures in instances where the Class 9 warehouse and the destination port are within the director’s authority. This blanket withdrawal may only be used if the vessel to which the merchandise is transferred is destined for a foreign destination. In addition, the final rule provides Class 9 proprietors 20 calendar days to provide written confirmation of any reported shortages, overages or damages. The final rule also modifies the provision that lists the information required for the annual reconciliation report, reducing the reporting requirements for Class 9 warehouse proprietors who can show that they would report shortages within 20 days of discovery. Other amendments included in the final rule address alternatives to marking merchandise for Class 9 warehouse proprietors that use electronic systems that can distinguish between duty-paid and US-origin merchandise, and remove the requirement that sales tickets must be submitted in triplicate. The final rule is effective January 28, 2010.