If you are selling goods that are produced in North America and you want to take advantage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), you will need to obtain a Certificate of Origin. This is a document that verifies the origin of the goods that you are selling, and it is required for some types of goods to be eligible for NAFTA benefits.
Getting a Certificate of Origin can be a bit of a hassle, but it is necessary if you want to save money on tariffs and enjoy other benefits of NAFTA. Here are some instructions on how to get a Certificate of Origin for your North American goods.
Find out which goods are eligible for NAFTA
Before you can get a Certificate of Origin, you need to make sure that the goods you are selling are eligible for NAFTA. The NAFTA rules of origin can be complicated, but in general, if at least 50% of the value of your product comes from North America (Mexico, Canada, or the United States), it should be eligible.
Check the specific rules for your product to make sure, and keep in mind that some products may require additional documentation.
Choose a certifying authority
Once you have determined that your goods are eligible for NAFTA, you will need to find a certifying authority that can issue a Certificate of Origin. The certifying authority can be a government agency or a private company, but it must be authorized by the government of the exporting country.
In the United States, the certifying authority is usually the Chamber of Commerce in the exporter`s area. In Canada, it is often the Canadian Chamber of Commerce or a provincial chamber of commerce.
To get a Certificate of Origin, you will need to provide documentation that proves the origin of your goods. The exact documentation required will vary depending on the certifying authority, but it will usually include a commercial invoice, a bill of lading, and a detailed description of the goods.
You may also need to provide other documentation, such as a NAFTA-specific certificate of origin form. Make sure to check with the certifying authority to find out exactly what you need to provide.
Pay the fee
Getting a Certificate of Origin will usually require a fee. The fee will vary depending on the certifying authority, but it is usually around $50 or less. Make sure to check with the certifying authority to find out the exact cost.
Wait for your Certificate of Origin
Once you have provided all the necessary documentation and paid the fee, you will need to wait for your Certificate of Origin to be processed. This can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the certifying authority and the volume of requests they are processing.
Once you have your Certificate of Origin, you can use it to take advantage of the benefits of NAFTA when you ship your North American goods. Make sure to keep a copy of the Certificate of Origin for your records, and keep in mind that you may need to provide it to customs officials when you import your goods to other countries.
In conclusion, getting a Certificate of Origin for your North American goods is an important step if you want to take advantage of NAFTA benefits. By following these instructions and working with a certifying authority, you can ensure that your goods are eligible for NAFTA and save money on tariffs.