Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Systems

Procedures to Follow During System Outages/Interruptions

The following procedures should be followed during a CBSA, other government department (OGD) or client system outage/interruption:

  • Where clients must revert to paper because of a full CBSA/OGD system outage/interruption, a paper Release on Minimum Documentation (RMD), accompanied by an exception lead sheet indicating "system outage," will be accepted.
  • In the event of a partial CBSA/OGD system outage/interruption, where messages from the CBSA systems are not being transmitted to clients’ systems, CBSA officers will accept the Customs Delivery Authority copy of the Cargo Control Document. When the CBSA officer determines that the shipment has been released in ACROSS (Accelerated Commercial Release Operations Support System), the officer will release-stamp the Customs Delivery Authority copy of the Cargo Control Document and provide the document back to the client as proof of clearance.
  • In the event of a client system outage, CBSA officers will accept paper RMDs. An exception lead sheet indicating “system outage” must accompany the paper RMD. If a CBSA officer feels that a client is using this exception as a means to avoid the requirement to transmit information electronically, the officer's concerns will be communicated to CBSA Headquarters for follow up with the client. 
  • During a CBSA or OGD system outage/interruption, clients may contact the Technical Commercial Client Unit Hotline at 1-888-957-7224 to obtain the current status of CBSA/OGD systems. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Clients who are not located in the same area as the CBSA office of release may ask a local customs broker to submit the paper release request on their behalf under the conditions outlined in Memorandum D1-6-1, Authority to Act as Agent, paragraph 5.
  • The CBSA continues to explore more advanced technological solutions to replace or augment the current policy of reverting to a paper process for the release of commercial goods during a system outage.
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