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Guidance Documents

CBP issues guidance documents to help the public understand how CBP administers its statutory and regulatory authorities.  Consistent with Executive Order 13891 Promoting the Rule of Law Through Improved Agency Guidance Documents, documents that may meet the criteria of EO13891 are listed below, and links to the documents are provided.

  • In general, guidance documents lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract.

As defined in Executive Order 13891, a “guidance document” is “an agency statement of general applicability, intended to have future effect on the behavior of regulated parties, that sets forth a policy on a statutory, regulatory, or technical issue, or an interpretation of a statute or regulation.”  The term “guidance document,” as used in Executive Order 13891, is a term of art, and it is subject to various exclusions and exemptions.   For example, the Executive Order contains an exemption for guidance documents related to a homeland security function of the United States.

Consistent with the goal of transparency that underlies Executive Order 13891, CBP is also posting other documents that fall outside the scope of the Executive Order to provide further ease of access and clarity to the public.  Therefore, this page includes guidance documents that may meet the definition of “guidance document” in the Executive Order, as well as other types of guidance documents.

Control Number Document Name Description
EO13891-OT-246 2018 Record of Changes in ANSI X.12 and UNEDIFACT This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-153 2310-011A Personal Use Exemption: Unauthorized Trademarks Customs Directive 2310-011A - Personal Use Exemption: Unauthorized Trademarks This document may qualify as a "guidance document" as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-277 350 Customs Status Information This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-175 3550-055 Instructions for Deriving Manufacturer/Shipper Identification Code Establishes method for deriving shipping code for manufacturers and shippers.This document may qualify as a "guidance document" as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-128 3550-073A Duty Free Entry of Scientific Instruments Customs Directive: Duty Free Entry of Scientific Instruments This document may qualify as a "guidance document" as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-374 ABI Error Message Dictionary This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-377 ABI Requirements CATAIR Chapter This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-395 ABI Software Vendors List This document provides a list of Software Vendors who are certified to submit transactions to CBP via the Automated Broker Interface (ABI). This document further specifies what functions vendors are certified to file ABI transactions. This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems. This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-447 ACE 5106 Error Dictionary This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-396 ACE ABI CATAIR Batch & Block Control Chapter This chapter of the ACE Automated Broker Interface (ABI)/CBP and Trade Automated Interface Requirements (CATAIR) provides trade participant interface information for the revised ACE-version of an Automated Broker Interface (ABI) electronic data submission for the Application Identifiers specifically noted. This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems. This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-435 ACE ABI CATAIR Entry Summary Create/Update Filing and Response Scenarios Examples of various ACE EDI Entry Summary responses based on the syntax rules, control/filing action rules, and business data rules. The conditions and examples cited here are representative of relevant categories of "validation," "acceptance" and "rejection." This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems. This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-375 ACE ABI CATAIR Glossary of Terms This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems. This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.Pub#0875-0419
EO13891-OT-426 ACE ABI CATAIR Quota Query Chapter This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-501 ACE Account Creation - Exporter Accounts QRG ACE training resources for trade users.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-376 ACE ACS Introduction to Entry Processing This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.Pub # 0875-0419
EO13891-OT-328 ACE AES Operational Certification Test Scripts: Long Test Scripts This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-298 ACE AESTIR 824 Application Advice This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.PUB # 0875 0419
EO13891-OT-301 ACE AESTIR Appendix A - Commodity Filing Response Messages In CERT: June 06, 2019In PROD: June 10, 2019This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-317 ACE AESTIR Appendix Q - PGA Record Formats In CERT: September 6, 2018In PROD: September 7, 2018PGA record formats to support ACE export filings.This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-324 ACE AESTIR Appendix X — HTS Codes for PGAs Date in Cert: 07/02/2018Date in Prod: 07/03/2019This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-299 ACE AESTIR Export Reference Data In CERT: November 16, 2017In PROD: November 17, 2017This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information. 
EO13891-OT-286 ACE AESTIR General Information This page provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-470 ACE Agency Tariff Code Reference Guide This document is the cross reference between the tariff codes and the government agency program codes, to be used when submitting PGA data via the PGA Message Set in ACE. The codes in this document will be active no earlier than when the PGA Message Set pilots with the agencies listed begin. In the future, these may be incorporated as part of the ACS CATAIR Harmonized Tariff Schedule Chapter (VL and WL record identifiers).Information Notice detailing ACE deployment and user impacts.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.
EO13891-OT-229 ACE Air CAMIR Appendix A: Codes This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.Pub # 0875-0419
EO13891-OT-187 ACE Air CAMIR Appendix B: Air Message Examples This document provides the message formats and technical specifications necessary to electronically transmit data to CBP's automated systems.This document may qualify as a “guidance document” as set forth in Executive Order 13891 and interpretations thereof; such guidance documents are not binding and lack the force and effect of law, except as authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract. This document is being posted to this portal to provide stakeholders with useful information.

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Last modified: 
February 28, 2020
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