July 17, 2018

Intra-Mexico Customs Process Changes: Impact on Relocation

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Intra-Mexico Customs Process Changes: Impact on Relocation

Posted by: Ken Eng, Director, Supply Chain Management

There have been some recent changes to the customs process for employees moving their household goods within Mexico that relocation managers should be aware of. Mexican Customs has instituted a customs clearance process for household goods moving from their northern border free trade zone containing the cities of Mexicali and Tijuana. Transferring employees moving from Mexicali and Tijuana are subject to import regulations when moving to southern Mexican states.

Cartus freight forwarders are aware of the new regulations and are prepared to assist transferring employees in applying for and obtaining their required permits. Permits are required in order to declare what is contained in the household goods shipment and to ensure that ‘new’ items are not being brought into the southern states for resale without the required duties and taxes.   

What Relocation Managers and Transferring Employees Need to Know

Cartus and our freight forwarders will guide you and your transferring employees through the new process, but here are a few important things to know: 

  • Transferring employees must apply for their permit, known as a Servicio de Administracion Tributaria (SAT) Letter, via the Mexican Customs website.
  • As the law is relatively new, the turnaround time can be several weeks as more people go to the website. In some cases, it is taking 35-40 days to obtain the SAT letter, but it is expected that this turnaround time will be reduced as the SAT office implements the regulations.  
  • It is not advisable for transferring employees to ship their goods before receiving all documents as the goods will be delayed at the border and officials may conduct an inspection. 
  • Officials have the ability to tax, or even seize, the shipment if all required documents are not forthcoming and any contraband is found.  
  • You and your transferring employees should consider the import permit process when making travel plans.  

Cartus Supply Chain management will continue to monitor this situation and will provide further updates on the potential impact to your relocation program. Should you have any queries, please contact your Cartus representative or email us at trustedguidance@cartus.com.

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