CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM)
Accounts Receivable Ledger (ARL) - Frequently Asked Questions

General

1. What is the ARL (Accounts Receivable Ledger)?

The Accounts Receivable Ledger (ARL) is the first phase of the CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) project. CARM is a large, multi-year transformational project that will help the CBSA simplify and streamline the assessment and collection of revenue and automate key business processes.

The CARM Project will:

ARL provides:

2. How can I find out more about ARL?

You may consult the FAQs within this page and consult other links available at ARL.

For questions about the contents of ARL statements, clients can contact the CARM mailbox. For technical issues related to receiving electronic statements, clients can contact the CBSA's Technical Commercial Client Unit (TCCU) by phone at 1-888-957-7224 or by email.

Statements

3. How do I receive messages/statements from ARL?

Daily Notices (DNs) and monthly Statements of Account (SOAs) are sent via Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) to all EDI-enabled importers and brokers with account security in their choice of XML, EDIFACT or CADEX formats. EDI-enabled clients are those who have their own EDI connection, use the services of an EDI-enabled broker or an EDI-enabled third-party service provider.

If you are EDI-enabled, have account security, and would like further information, you can contact the CBSA's Technical Commercial Client Unit (TCCU) by phone at 1-888-957-7224 or by email. TCCU can also provide Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Documents (ECCRDs), which provide the technical information that you will need to ready your system to accept the new documents.

The CBSA will only provide, upon request, printed ARL statements for clients that are not certified * to receive electronic statements, or for clients certified to receive electronic statements in extenuating circumstances only (e.g., client system outage).

* The CBSA officer will provide the client with the contact information for the TCCU and recommend that they consider options to receive their statements electronically. 

Trade chain partners (TCPs) requiring printed account information will be able to make a request in person at identified CBSA offices.  Alternatively, importers without account security can send an e-mail to the CARM mailbox to obtain importer account information and balances.

4. Can I see what the Daily Notices and Statements of Account look like?

Please contact the CBSA's Technical Commercial Client Unit (TCCU) by phone at 1-888-957-7224 or by email to request ECCRDs, to see samples of the statements, and to obtain additional information to help you determine the statement format you prefer (XML, EDIFACT or CADEX).

You can also consult the ARL Reference Manual for information on how different transactions appear on the new statements for both brokers and importers.

Contact the CARM mailbox to request a copy.

5. Can an importer select more than one broker or service provider to receive their importer Daily Notices (DNs) and Statements of Account (SOAs)?

No, an importer can only select one broker or service provider to receive their DNs and SOAs.

6. Are type V and type H entries shown on the Daily Notice (DN) and monthly Statement of Account (SOA)?

Type V and type H entries can be processed with an account security (ASEC) based transaction number or can be processed with a cash barcode. If these entries are processed with a cash barcode, they will be payable on release of the goods and will therefore not appear on a statement. For the Type V and H entries that are processed with an ASEC based transaction number, these will not be payable on release of the goods. These entries will appear on the DN/SOA.

7. Can I access my past Daily Notices (DNs) and monthly Statements of Account (SOAs) online?

No, SOAs and DNs are sent out automatically using Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). If you would like to reference the statements in the future, you can save them electronically, or print and save a hardcopy.

Broker Information

8. I am a broker. Will I receive my importer clients' Daily Notices (DNs) and monthly Statements of Account (SOAs)?

An importer with account security (ASEC) that is Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) enabled, either through their own EDI connection, a broker's connection or through a third-party service provider, who has been certified by the CBSA will receive their Daily Notices (DNs) and monthly Statements of Account (SOAs) via EDI.

An importer with ASEC that does not have their own EDI connection has the option of having their importer statement sent to an EDI-enabled service provider or a broker. The CBSA must receive written authorization from both the importer and the broker or service provider before it will send an importer's statements to the broker or service provider.

Written authorization is provided on the form titled Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Application for Daily Notice (DN) and Statement of Account (SOA), available upon request from the CBSA's Technical Commercial Client Unit.

DNs and SOAs are not generated for importers who do not have an ASEC. Other documentation, such as Detailed Adjustment Statement (DAS) and Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS) notices, will be sent out by mail.

A broker (e.g. broker ABC) should note that transactions secured by an importer using either the importer ASEC or another broker's (e.g. broker XYZ) ASEC will not be included on broker ABC's DN and SOA. Brokers will receive their Broker Statements via EDI if they are EDI-enabled and certified by the CBSA. The certification process can be initiated by completing the form titled Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Application for Daily Notice (DN) and Statement of Account (SOA), available from the CBSA's Technical Commercial Client Unit.

9. I am a broker who also has importer accounts (i.e. BN15s). Will my imports under my BN15 accounts appear on my broker Statement of Account?

The Importer Daily Notice (DN) and monthly Statement of Account (SOA) are issued by BN15, while the Broker DN and SOA are issued by BN9.

When a broker imports using their ASEC, the transaction will appear on their broker DN and SOA. These broker statements have a separate section for each client BN15. If the broker used any of their broker ASECs to import under their own BN15, these transactions will appear under an "Importer Summary" headed by the broker's own BN15 number. The broker will also receive a separate importer DN and monthly SOA for their own import accounts (BN15s). If a broker imports using an ASEC that is not their own, the transaction will not appear on their broker statements; it will only appear on their importer statements.

10. Since the broker Daily Notice (DN) and monthly Statement of Account (SOA) are organized by importer accounts, would a broker ever see items on their DN and SOA that are not associated with an importer?

Fees, such as non-sufficient funds charges, that are incurred by a broker directly against their broker account are posted against the broker's BN9, and not against a BN15. As a result, these charges do not appear in any of the BN15 sections on the broker DN or SOA. Instead, a brokerage section appears at the top of the broker SOA and is identified with the broker's legal entity name. The "Brokerage Section" only appears on a Broker's SOA when their account contains items associated directly with their BN9.

11. I am a broker. Can I make payments on behalf of my clients (importers)?

Yes, a broker can make payments on behalf of their clients.

If the amounts being paid are included on the broker Statement of Account (SOA) – i.e. they are associated with the broker account security (ASEC) – the broker can pay them via Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) or at a CBSA office. These payments are applied against transactions on the importer's account that are associated with the broker, using the CBSA's payment allocation rules.

Brokers can also make a payment against an importer's account that is not associated with their broker ASEC by EDI. To achieve this, the broker's BN9 in the EDI file for that client will need to remain "blank". Further, if they visit an ARL supported site in person, they can request that the payment be made as an importer payment. In this scenario, the broker will be acting as the importer and the payment will not be included on the broker SOA or DN nor will the payment be associated with any broker accounts.

If a broker wishes to make a payment against a specific transaction on an importer's account, the broker will need to make a payment with one cheque for that item in person at a CBSA office.

Importer Information

12. How are Daily Notices (DN) and Statements of Account (SOA) distributed to importers who do not have their own Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) connection?

If an importer has an ASEC and does not have an EDI connection, they can have their DNs and SOAs sent either to a broker or to a third-party service provider.

To do this, an importer and the broker (or third-party service provider) need to sign an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Application for Daily Notice (DN) and Statement of Account (SOA) giving the CBSA permission to send their DNs and SOAs to a broker or third-party service provider.

An importer must complete this application process even if they already have an agreement in place for a broker to receive their K84s because the information on the new statements is different from the information on the K84s.

More information on the features of the DNs and SOA.

The ARL Reference Manual provides information on the format of these statements, as well as providing many examples of how different transaction types would be displayed.

To request an ARL Reference Manual, contact the Technical Commercial Client Unit.

Importers without account security can send an e-mail to the CARM mailbox to obtain importer account information and balances.

13. I am an importer with account security (ASEC), and I pick up my statements and make payments at my local CBSA office. Do I need to do anything differently?

Importers and brokers with account security who are not EDI-enabled can request a printed copy of their statements in-person at any ARL supported site (not every CBSA office is equipped with ARL).

Importers without account security can send an e-mail to the CARM mailbox to obtain importer account information and balances.

For further details, please refer to questions 11, 12 and 13 in Customs Notice 16-06.

14. I’m an importer and my broker makes payments on my behalf, but I pay for my own Goods and Services Tax (GST) under the GST Direct Payment Option. If my cheque is returned for non-sufficient funds (NSF), who incurs the NSF fee: me or my broker? Where will this fee show on my statement?

Under the GST Direct Payment Option, the importer is liable to ensure all payments have sufficient funds. If the cheque is returned, the importer will be charged the NSF fee. This fee will show under the “Other Transactions” section on the importer DN's and SOA.

15. I am a broker that deals with multiple importers. Will my statement display all of my importer’s transactions?

If an importer uses a broker's account security (ASEC), then the transactions secured under that ASEC will be included on the broker Daily Notice (DN) and Statement of Account (SOA). The DN and SOA are organized into sections corresponding to each importer that imported goods using any of the broker's ASECs during that billing cycle.

16. I am an importer that deals with multiple brokers. Will my statement show all of my transactions, no matter which broker I used?

Yes, Importer Daily Notices (DNs) and Statement of Accounts (SOAs) are issued at the BN15 level and will include all transactions associated with that BN15 regardless of which broker handled the transactions.

17. I am an importer that deals with multiple brokers. Will my broker be able to see that I did business with another broker?

Electronic transmission of the DN/SOA requires Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) access. Importers that are not EDI-enabled have the option of authorizing an EDI-enabled broker or service provider to receive their Importer DN/SOA on their behalf. The importer can only authorize one broker or service provider to receive their statements. Since the Importer statement includes all importer transactions, the broker or third-party service provider will be able to see all the brokers the importer did business with.

You may refer to the list of EDI Service Providers who are certified with the CBSA for electronic data receipt; please note that this list is not exhaustive.

18. I have recently changed my business name. What will happen if my broker makes a payment on my behalf using my old name?

Payments will be posted based on the Business number submitted.

19.  How can I access my Daily Notice (DN) and Statement of Account (SOA) without a broker?

Importers will need to:

Being "EDI Certified" by the CBSA means that the EDI-enabled client has shown the CBSA that their systems can successfully interact with the new statements.  EDI Certification involves:

Interest

20. How will I see interest charges on my statements?

The interest charges will appear in the "Other Transactions" section of the importer or broker SOA. The document type for each interest row will be "IN", and each interest document will have a unique transaction number. The "Document Number" field will also display the document number of the document that interest is being calculated against. Interest charges levied against unpaid interest documents will be included as separate interest documents.

The total interest incurred during a billing period will also be included in the "Interest Arrears" field on the importer SOA.

The electronic transmission of the broker SOA will also include an "Interest Arrears" field that totals all unpaid interest for transactions associated with any of the broker's ASECs.

21. Who is responsible for paying interest?

Although importers may use an agent to do business with the CBSA, the importer is ultimately responsible for accounting documentation, payment of duties and taxes, and subsequent corrections such as re-determination of classification, origin and valuation. The importer remains liable for all duties and taxes owing until either the importer or their agent pays them.

22. Now that a credit may remain on an importer's account before it is off-set against debt, what are the rules governing the continued assessment of interest on that credit?

Interest is payable to an importer as of the 91st day from the submission of a B2 and ends on the day the DAS is issued.

Payments

23. Can I make payments at any CBSA office?

Yes. You can make payments at any CBSA office.

24. How can I make payments?

Fees owed to other government departments, such as Health Canada fees, may be paid at the CBSA office. Other payments can be made in a variety of ways, depending on the type of client submitting the payment. Refer to See question 25.

Existing Payment Options:

Pay at CBSA office
Client Cash Debit Card Credit Card1 Cheque Bank Remittance Voucher2
Importers without account security Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office
Importers with account security Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office
Brokers with account security Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office
CSA importer3 Do not pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office
Warehouse / Carrier Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office Do not pay at CBSA office

1 Visa, MasterCard or American Express (AMEX) credit cards (or their associated international credit card) for commercial goods for amounts up to $500.00.

2 Canadian Payment Association (CPA) rules only permit cheques to a maximum of Can$25,000,000. All payments in excess of Can$25,000,000 are to be made via a bank remittance voucher at your financial institution. The CBSA payment processing office will provide a copy of the RC165 (pre-stamped with the office's G11 work location) to clients needing to make a payment in excess of Can$25,000,000.

3 Custom Self-Assessment (CSA) importers can only pay at a CBSA office in exceptional circumstances (i.e. payment of collection notice, E29B).

New Payment Options available since mid-February 2016:

In addition to the existing payment options listed above, importers and brokers now have new payment options as a result of ARL:

Client Online banking1 CBSA Electronic Data Interchange
(EDI Direct / EDI 820)2
Importers without account security Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office
Importers with account security Pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office
Brokers with account security Do not pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office
CSA importer Do not pay at CBSA office Pay at CBSA office

1 Importers can pay using online banking if they have a BN15 and the amount is within their financial institution's transaction limit.

2 EDI Direct (EDI 820) requires users to have access to Electronic Data Interchange (EDI).

For more information about payment options with the CBSA, please consult Memorandum D17-1-5

25.  Can you explain how a commercial client can remit payments using Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) or Online banking?

There are two electronic payment options:

Electronic payment provides a convenient automated solution to ensure that payments to the CBSA are received on time and error free. This facilitates seamless payment processing and the accuracy of accounts by reducing complex manual adjustment activities requiring intervention by both the CBSA and payees.

To ensure that a payment is processed the same day, CBSA clients using the online banking and EDI methods are responsible for adhering to their financial institution (FI's) cut-off time for payment.

The following clients are eligible to remit payments by Electronic Data Interchange (EDI):

The following clients are eligible to remit payments by using online banking: 

Importer online payments are intended for the importer total payable amount only, which is displayed on the importer month-end statement of account. If the importer is not receiving a statement by EDI, this can be obtained from an Agent or broker, a CBSA Office or by e-mailing the CBSA CARM mailbox.

Online banking works the same way as paying any other bill online. Importers need to add the "CBSA DUTIES TAXES FEES or CBSA Duties, Taxes and Fees or CANADA BORDER SERVICES AGENCY or AGENCE DES SERVICES FRONTALIERS DU CANADA" as the payee on the online banking portal. Payment amounts are subject to limits set by each participating FI and cut-off times are also determined by each FI.

26.  Who are the participating Financial Institutions for EDI and Online Banking Payments?

The Canadian financial institutions which offer the CBSA EDI and online banking services are:

27.  What is the EDI amount limit for payment?

Payment by EDI 820 allows electronic payment against multiple accounts and does not impose any limits on payment amounts. 

28. If a financial institution was delayed posting a GST payment made online by an importer, which resulted in interest or late payment penalty, how will this appear on the Statement of Account (SOA)?

This should not occur as the ARL system uses the bank transfer date "value date" issued by the bank's system, which is the same day (subject to payment cut-off times by each financial institution) as when the payment was made.    

29. What information does the client need to provide when paying by EDI or online banking?

The following information is required:

30.  Does ARL issue a receipt for a payment by EDI and online banking?

Payment by EDI: Clients paying electronically receive an EDI 824 and/or EDI 997 message from their bank or service provider to confirm that the payment was delivered. This message serves as proof of payment.

Payment by online banking:  A confirmation number from their financial institution.

31.  How Do I Register for EDI?  

To begin making payments using EDI, each eligible client is required to test with their financial institution or service provider

32.  Can EDI payments also be made in US Currency?

The client (importer/broker) could make a payment to the bank in US or other foreign currency and have the bank do the exchange to Canadian currency.  This process is managed between the Financial Institution and the importer/broker

For more information about payment options with the CBSA, please consult Memorandum D17-1-5

33. If I make a payment on account, how will my payment be applied against my transactions?

Generally speaking, payments will be applied against an account in the following order:

  1. Dishonored payment fees (NSFs) of $25 and other charges;
  2. Administrative K23 charges;
  3. Penalties (K9, LAP and NPA);
  4. Interest charges for overdue accounts; and
  5. B3 transactions due during the month.

Note that:

34. I am an importer with multiple BNs. I would like to pay with a single check for all of my BNs. What information do I need to provide the CBSA?

For importers who have more than one importer (BN15/RM) account but who bring in one cheque payment for all of their importer accounts, the CBSA requires instruction on how the cheque should be split across the importer accounts. This information is provided on a Payment Allocation Sheet (PAS). To request a suggested format for the PAS contact your local CBSA Office or email CARM mailbox.

35. I am a broker. I would like to pay an amount that is different than the amount owing on my Statement of Account (SOA). What information do I need to provide the CBSA?

To explain any difference between the amount that is due on an SOA and the amount that is paid, brokers should provide a Reconciliation Exception Sheet (RES). The total of the items listed on the RES form must equal the difference between the SOA total and the payment total.

For an overpayment: If a RES is not received, or if the RES does not equal the difference between the total of the amounts owing per the SOA and the payments offered, ARL will allocate the total amount paid to the amounts owing for each importer according to the distribution on the broker's SOA, and will credit the remaining amount to the broker's BN9.

For an underpayment: If a RES explaining the underpayment is not received, the interim payments will be credited to the broker's BN9 and all importer accounts will remain in unpaid status until instructions are received.

36. Is there a fee for electronic payments?

Although the CBSA does not charge a fee for using the CBSA’s Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Payment service or for online banking, some financial institutions or service providers may charge a service fee. Contact your financial institutions or service providers to ask about fees.

37. Can non-resident clients use the CBSA’s Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Payment service?

Non-resident clients can use this service if they conduct business with a participating Canadian financial institution. Contact your financial institution directly to discuss this service.

38. I am an importer using an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)-enabled service provider (e.g. broker). Can my service provider use the CBSA EDI Payment service to remit a payment on my behalf?

Yes. The service provider can send an importer's payment to the CBSA using the CBSA EDI Payment Service. Please email the CARM mailbox for more information and indicate "EDI Payment Question – Service Provider" in the subject line.

39. Can I make an advance payment using the CBSA Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Payment service?

Yes. The payment date will be provided to the CBSA by the financial institution, with payments made on weekends and/or statutory holidays recognized as having been made on the following business day.

40. What date does ARL use when entering payment data?

Payments are entered into ARL with an effective date that is equal to the date that the payment was received by the CBSA, either electronically or at the counter. Since the payment may be entered into ARL a few days after payment is received, this may involve backdating the effective date to a date prior to the transaction date. ARL is programmed to calculate interest and to allocate payments using the effective date, not the data entry date. For example, a payment that was received at the counter on July 15 but that was not keyed into ARL until July 17 would have a data entry date of July 17, but an effective date of July 15. Financial calculations such as interest would be made using the date of July 15.

ARL calculates the age of transactions based on the effective date of the transaction. Where two transactions occurred on the same date, the time stamp is to be used to determine which transaction occurred first.

41. Does the CBSA record amounts under $2.00 owed to the claimant and under $7.50 owed to CBSA in the ARL system?

Yes. This information is currently displayed in the ARL system. There are no changes to the CBSA's remission process regarding B2s. Amounts less than $7.50 that are owed to the CBSA do not require payment and will not appear on client statement of accounts (SOA) but will appear on Daily Notice (DN). Amounts less than $2.00 that are owed to clients will appear on DNs and SOAs and will not be refunded; however, amounts less than 2.00 can be refunded if they are grouped with other credit amounts on the account to make the refund larger than $2.00. Otherwise, these amounts will be used for offsetting.

Certification and Testing

42. What are Electronic Commercial Client Requirements Documents (ECCRDs)?

Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Documents (ECCRDs) provide comprehensive information about business and system requirements for various electronic transactions for import and export programs. ECCRDs have been issued to define the structure and content of the Daily Notices (DNs) and Monthly Statements of Account (SOAs) generated by ARL and transmitted electronically to EDI-enabled commercial clients that have been certified by the CBSA.

Three ECCRDs related to ARL Statements are available in three different formats: XML, EDIFACT or CADEX. If you would like to request an ECCRD, you can contact the Technical Commercial Client Unit (TCCU) by phone at 1-888-957-7224 or by email.

43. What is the Accounts Receivable Ledger (ARL) Reference Manual?

The Accounts Receivable Ledger (ARL) Reference Manual contains ARL's basic concepts business processes. The ARL Reference Manual explains the format of the DNs and SOAs, and how the content is generated. It also describes the differences between broker and importer statements, and how transactions appear on the statements.

The ARL Reference Manual also includes numerous scenarios, developed in response to client questions, which demonstrate how a variety of processes will affect client accounts and statements.

The ARL Reference Manual is not intended to provide technical specifications of the DNs and SOAs, which are available in XML, CADEX and EDIFACT formats. If you are seeking information about the data structure and transmission specifications for DNs and SOAs, consult the Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document (ECCRD) for the desired format. ECCRDs are available from the Technical Commercial Client Unit (TCCU).

Please email the CARM mailbox to request a copy of the ARL Reference Manual.

Refunds

44. Will the CBSA offset my account or issue a refund?

For further details, please refer to the Customs Notice 16-19 and the CBSA Fact Sheet on Importer Account Offsetting.

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