Mandatory Electronic House Bills – End of the Zero-Rated Penalty Period
Customs Notice 21-15

Ottawa, May 19, 2021

Revised, December 22, 2021

1. This notice replaces Customs Notice 21-15 and provides new information regarding the end of the zero-rated penalty period granted to freight forwarders under the Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS) for electronic house bills that began on .The transitionary period will end .

2. Electronic house bills, house bill close messages and supplementary cargo data for consolidated cargo arriving on or after , may be subject to monetary AMPS penalties if freight forwarders are not compliant with freight forwarder requirements as per the Reporting of Imported Goods Regulations.

3. On , regulatory amendments supporting the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)’s eManifest initiative were published in the Canada Gazette Part II. The publication of these regulatory amendments brought eManifest requirements for freight forwarders into force. However, the CBSA had provided an extended voluntary period for eManifest requirements for freight forwarders.

4. These mandatory requirements apply to bonded and non-bonded freight forwarders who are responsible for consolidated (including back-to-back) imports, and shipments transiting through Canada, unless covered by an exception. The existing processes for consolidated freight remaining on board (FROB) shipments will continue in the air and marine modes.

5. The requirement to transmit electronic house bill, house bill close message and supplementary cargo data is the liability of the freight forwarder, as defined in the Reporting of Imported Goods Regulations: “freight forwarder” means a person who, on behalf of one or more owners, importers, shippers or consignees of goods, causes specified goods to be transported by one or more carriers; (agent d’expédition). Freight forwarders or carriers who meet this definition may transmit supplementary cargo data or house bill and house bill close message data using their own carrier code.

6. As with many CBSA processes, business to business communication is essential to ensure the appropriate information is transmitted to the CBSA.

7. As of , Advance Commercial Information (ACI) related Administrative Monetary Penalties (AMPs) may be issued to freight forwarders when non-compliance is detected. Some examples of AMPs penalties are listed below and can be found in the Master Penalty Document (MPD).

Person failed to submit the prescribed pre-load/pre-arrival information relating to their cargo and/or conveyance.
Level 1 $2,000, Level 2 $4,000, Level 3 $8,000
Person failed to submit advance information in the prescribed time or prescribed manner to the Agency.
Level 1 $250, Level 2 $375, Level 3 $750
Person failed to comply with a notification issued by the CBSA regarding the goods on board or expected to be on board the conveyance.
Level 1 $2,000, Level 2 $4,000, Level 3 $8,000
Person failed to notify the Agency within prescribed timeframes and without delay of any correction to any pre-arrival or pre-load information sent to the CBSA.
Level 1 $500, Level 2 $750, Level 3 $1,500
Person submitted information prescribed by the Reporting of Imported Goods Regulations that was not true, accurate and complete.
Level 1 $500, Level 2 $750, Level 3 $1,500

8. For details on new electronic house bill systems rules, refer to Chapter 5 and Chapter 8 of the Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document (ECCRD). For details on new arrival system rules, refer to the modal chapters of the ECCRD.

9. Clients who are not already registered and participating in electronic house bills should contact the Technical Commercial Client Unit (TCCU). You may contact the TCCU by email at or by calling 1-888-957-7224 and selecting Option:

10. The CBSA also strongly urges freight forwarders to register for electronic notices, which includes the Deconsolidation Notice. Clients may refer to Chapter 11 of the ECCRD or contact the TCCU for more information.

11. For email support on eManifest policy and processes, contact the eManifest Help Desk at

12. For additional information regarding the pre-arrival and reporting requirements for freight forwarders, see the departmental memoranda (D3-3-1, Freight Forwarder Pre-Arrival and Reporting Requirements).

13. For additional information regarding eManifest requirements, clients may visit the CBSA Web site.

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