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CBP COVID-19 Updates and Announcements

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U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is working closely with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and other federal, state, and local agencies to support the whole-of-government effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 and keep everyone safe.

Please visit USA.gov/coronavirus for official government-wide information and CDC.gov/coronavirus for health-related updates about COVID-19. Visit DHS.gov/coronavirus for homeland security updates and FEMA's website to distinguish between rumors and facts regarding the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

CBP Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates and Announcements 

Travel Announcements and Advisories

Notices for Travelers

TRAVEL ALERT:  Temporary Travel Restrictions Applicable to Land Ports of Entry and Ferries Service Between the United States and Mexico

The temporary restriction on non-essential travel at U.S. land border ports of entry remains in effect through August 21, 2021, unless rescinded. Essential travel and trade continue unimpeded. Essential travel includes, but is not limited to:

  • U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents returning to the United States;
  • Individuals traveling for medical purposes (e.g., to receive medical treatment in the United States);
  • Individuals traveling to attend educational institutions;
  • Individuals traveling to conduct essential work in the United States;
  • Individuals traveling for emergency response and public health purposes;
  • Individuals engaged in lawful cross-border trade;
  • Individuals engaged in official government travel or diplomatic travel; and
  • Members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their children and/or spouses returning to the United States and individuals engaged in military-related travel or operations. 

Travel of U.S. Citizens with Expired Passports

As of May 21, 2021, U.S. citizens will be able to use their expired U.S. passports to return to the U.S. through Dec. 31, 2021.Expired passports cannot be used to travel from the U.S. to an international destination or to travel to a foreign country for any length of stay longer than an airport connection en route to the U.S. or to a U.S. territory. Any questions concerning the scope or implementation of this guidance, including the authorization for U.S. citizens to board an aircraft, should be directed to the appropriate Regional Carrier Liaison Group or other designated CBP official for adjudication prior to aircraft departure.If you are overseas and your passport expired on or after January 1, 2020, you may be able to use your expired passport to return directly to the United States until December 31, 2021. For more information please visit: travel.state.gov

Trusted Traveler Program (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST) 

CBP Trusted Traveler Programs Enrollment Centers resumed operations on September 8, 2020. Beginning September 8, conditionally approved Global Entry applicants will be able to complete in-person interviews at most Trusted Traveler Programs enrollment centers in the United States. These applicants must schedule enrollment center interviews in advance by logging into their account on the Trusted Traveler Programs website.  Enrollment on Arrival remains operational at participating airports. NEXUS and U.S.-Canada FAST interviews at U.S. and Canadian enrollment centers will remain suspended until further notice. SENTRI and FAST-South enrollments on the southern border may also be limited.

Visa Waiver Program Updates

CBP Offers Flexibility to Departing Visa Waiver Program Travelers - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced April 17, 2020 that Visa Waiver Program travelers who have been granted satisfactory departure may now apply for an additional 30-day extension of their admission period if they remain unable to depart the United States because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). These travelers may apply for the additional satisfactory departure period by contacting: (1) any local CBP Port of Entry or Deferred Inspection Site; or (2) the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Contact Center. Travelers should be prepared to provide their passport number when submitting their request. 

Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA)

Presidential Proclamations 9984, 9992, 9993 and 9996 temporarily suspended the entry into the United States of most individuals, other than U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents, who were physically present in mainland China, Iran, Ireland, the United Kingdom, or the Schengen Area in the 14 days preceding their attempted entry. Any traveler with a valid ESTA who is subject to the Proclamations and who attempts to travel the United States in violation of the Proclamations will have their ESTA canceled. ESTA will not refund applications that are canceled due to the Proclamations. Travelers who have questions about whether they are subject to, or exempted from, the Proclamations should refer to the Proclamations and consult with the U.S. Department of State and the air carrier, as appropriate, in advance of travel to avoid travel disruptions. For more information, please visit the ESTA website.

e-SAFE Biometrics Processing and Forms I-192 and I-212 Collection

In the interest of minimizing exposure and controlling the spread of COVID-19, effective March 21, 2020, CBP's Admissibility Review Office temporarily suspended, at the designated CBP ports of entry (POE), the collection of Form I-192, Application for Advance Permission to Enter as a Nonimmigrant, Form I-212, Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission into the United States After Deportation or Removal, and the mandatory biometrics capture for electronic applications filed via e-SAFE.  This suspension will effect applicants applying at POEs along the Northern Border and Preclearance locations in Canada for non-essential travel.

CBP extended the suspension of biometrics processing at e-SAFE Ports of Entry for non-essential travel. The suspension will remain in effect from 07/22/21 until 08/21/21, or until revoked, due to current travel restrictions..  Applicants who’ve applied via e-SAFE are encouraged to monitor their e-mail and the e-SAFE website for updates.  CBP will continue to monitor the situation in order to resume biometrics capture and I-192/I-212 applications processing at the POEs as soon as possible.  We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your patience through this process. Additional information for essential travel is available at https://federalregister.gov. More information about e-SAFE is available at https://e-safe.cbp.dhs.gov/

Notices for Carriers

Coronavirus Exemptions Available to Travelers

This CBP guidance for carriers clarifies exemption categories to Presidential Proclamations 9984 (China), 9992 (Iran), 10143 (Schengen Area, United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Brazil, and Republic of South Africa) and 10199 (India). This guidance is a consolidation of all exemptions currently available to travelers and does not contain any new exemptions or restrictions.

Travel of U.S. Citizens with Expired Passports

As of May 21, 2021, U.S. citizens will be able to use their expired U.S. passports to return to the U.S. through Dec. 31, 2021.Expired passports cannot be used to travel from the U.S. to an international destination or to travel to a foreign country for any length of stay longer than an airport connection en route to the U.S. or to a U.S. territory. Any questions concerning the scope or implementation of this guidance, including the authorization for U.S. citizens to board an aircraft, should be directed to the appropriate Regional Carrier Liaison Group or other designated CBP official for adjudication prior to aircraft departure.

Carrier Liaison Program Coronavirus Guidance

CBP guidance for carriers regarding the January 31, 2020, Presidential Proclamation titled, “Suspension of Entry as Immigrants and Non-immigrants of Persons Who Pose a Risk of Transmitting 2019 Novel Coronavirus and Other Appropriate Measures to Address this Risk,” that suspended the entry into the United States of all aliens, with certain exceptions, who have been physically present in the People’s Republic of China (excluding the special autonomous regions of Hong Kong and Macau), during the 14-day period preceding their entry or attempted entry into the United States.

Air Carrier Submission of CBP Form 7507

Effective June 16, 2020, and for the duration of the pandemic or until further notification, CBP will permit the owners and operators of commercial aircraft to submit CBP Form 7507 via e-mail at ports of entry nationwide. CBP is offering this flexibility to commercial air carriers to promote social distancing and minimize the exposure of air carrier and CBP personnel to COVID-19. Air carriers may submit CBP Form 7507 via e-mail for both arriving and departing commercial aircraft for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. To exercise this option, the owner, operator or representative of the commercial aircraft must contact the port of entry at which their aircraft will arrive or depart to obtain the applicable email address and instructions from CBP.  Port of entry contact information may be found on CBP.gov. CBP recommends that air carriers protect all Personally Identifiable Information (PII) sent via e-mail.  Federal government standards for the use of encryption can be found on the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s website. CBP 7507, also known as the General Declaration, is a form that the owners or operators of commercial aircraft submit to CBP to provide basic flight itineraries, passenger and crew information, and other information about the arrival and departure of aircraft entering or exiting the United States.  This accommodation is not intended to and does not amend or supersede any current regulations.

Trade Announcements and Advisories

This webpage does not serve as a substitute for official trade notice websites, such as the Federal Register, CBP’s Cargo Systems Messaging Service (CSMS), Customs Bulletins, etc. The information on this webpage is subject to change as new information becomes available and is meant as an additional resource for the trade community.

Trade Program Updates and Announcements

COVID-19 Relief Imports

In an effort to coordinate inquiries regarding the import of medical supplies and personal protective equipment, CBP's Pharmaceuticals, Health and Chemical Center of Excellence and Expertise has established the COVID-19 Cargo Resolution Team (CCRT).  This team is a multidisciplinary team to triage incoming inquires, coordinate with affected ports, and respond directly as appropriate. Imports.cbp.gov will be used as CBP’s coordinating mechanism for receiving and responding to inquiries concerning COVID-19 Relief Imports.  Assigned staff will also coordinate with the ports and other government agencies to ensure that legitimate shipments are not unnecessarily delayed. See also, WCO Releases HS Classification Reference for COVID-19 Medical Supplies - Guidance from the World Customs Organization (WCO). 

Consumer Awareness for COVID-19 Safety Guidelines

Helpful advice to help you protect yourself, your family, and others through safe online shopping. Some foreign online sellers may be taking advantage of American consumers by charging high prices for counterfeit or substandard sanitation products and safety equipment. Be aware before you buy.

Regulations and Rulings

Temporary Postponement of Duties, Taxes, and Fees due to COVID-19 -  the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the designee of the Secretary of Homeland Security (U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)), is amending the CBP regulations to temporarily postpone the deadline for importers of record with a significant financial hardship to deposit certain estimated duties,taxes, and fees that they would ordinarily be obligated to pay as of the date of entry, or withdrawal from warehouse, for consumption, for merchandise entered in March or April 2020, for a period of 90 days from the date that the deposit would otherwise have been due but for this emergency action. 

The National Commodity Specialist Division is accepting binding ruling requests. To submit requests via eRulings and for updated guidance, visit https://erulings.cbp.gov/s/. Please note: delays may occur in processing due to COVID-19.

Regulatory Audit and Agency Advisory Services

Regulatory Audit and Agency Advisory Services (RAAAS) in the COVID-19 environment continues to conduct audits while following CDC health and safety guidelines. Given the preventative risk mitigation measures, both domestic and international, such as social distancing, avoiding group meetings, travel restrictions, shelter in place, and telework environment, as result of the pandemic, please feel free to contact your audit point of contact provided to discuss alternative options to continue the stages of your audit via virtual meetings, technology and secure file transmission protocols we are in the process of implementing to address the audit challenges in the COVID-19 environment.

Alternative Recordkeeping

RAAAS continues to support the advanced notification of intent to convert original customs records into an alternative method of storage as defined in 19 C.F.R. § 163.5(b)(2).  For quicker response and communication method during the COVID-19 protocol, please send your communication and notices to the following email address: CBPRECORDS@CBP.DHS.GOV.

 

CSMS Messages Related to COVID-19

Partner Government Agencies COVID-19 Information

This section contains links to PGA COVID-related information that could impact CBP trade operations. Please reference and bookmark these links. CBP will update this list as additional information become available.

 

PGA Codes Related to COVID-19

 

PGA Covid-19 URLs

PGAsWebsite
USDA-AMShttps://www.usda.gov/coronavirus
USDA-APHIS
USDA-FSIS
CPSChttps://www.cpsc.gov/
EPAhttps://www.epa.gov/coronavirus
FDA

Information for Filing Personal Protective Equipment and Medical Devices During COVID-19 -  https://www.fda.gov/industry/importing-covid-19-supplies/information-filing-personal-protective-equipment-and-medical-devices-during-covid-19

FDA Medical Device Emergency Use - https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/emergency-situations-medical-devices/emergency-use-authorizations

Fraudulent COVID-19 Test Kits - https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/beware-fraudulent-coronavirus-tests-vaccines-and-treatments

Unauthorized Fraudulent Test Kits - https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/coronavirus-covid-19-update-fda-alerts-consumers-about-unauthorized-fraudulent-covid-19-test-kits

FMChttps://www.fmc.gov/
FWShttps://fws.gov/
NHTSAhttps://www.nhtsa.gov/
NOAAhttps://www.noaa.gov/
TTBhttps://www.ttb.gov/

 

Agency COVID-19 Information

General

What is CBP doing to safeguard its employees/personnel during this pandemic?  

In order to minimize exposure to COVID-19, the CBP workforce is using social distancing to the maximum extent possible. CBP has ensured that personnel who cannot telework have ready access to Personal Protective Equipment and comprehensive guidance for the use of that equipment. CBP is taking every precaution to keep our workforce, their families and the American people safe while still accomplishing the CBP mission.

What specific protective equipment is CBP providing to agents and officers?

CBP has provided extensive guidance to all of its employees regarding the risk-based use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). PPE recommendations range from gloves to N95 respirators, eye protection, disposable outer garments and more based on infectious disease risks, job functions, and job settings. CBP has also issued sanitary guidance to its facilities specifically to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

CBP Confirmed COVID-19 Cases

Overall, CBP has 9,434 had  federal employees test positive for COVID-19.  33 have unfortunately died as a result of the virus.

CBP Employees

Location

Confirmed Cases*

Abu Dhabi

8

Alaska

3

Alabama

6

Arizona

1,056

Aruba

1

Bahamas

1

Brazil

1

California

1,496

Canada

13

Colombia

1

Colorado

7

Connecticut

11

Delaware

3

Florida

633

France

1

Georgia

178

Guam

5

Hawaii

4

Idaho

11

Illinois

101

Indiana

41

Ireland

2

Italy

1

Kentucky

5

Louisiana

97

Maine

17

Maryland

18

Massachusetts

35

Michigan

204

Minnesota

59

Mississippi

6

Missouri

8

Montana

45

Nevada

8

New Jersey

165

New Mexico

595

New York

543

North Carolina

24

North Dakota

59

Northern Mariana Islands

4

Ohio

19

Oklahoma

9

Oregon

1

Panama

2

Pennsylvania

55

Puerto Rico

32

South Carolina

69

Spain

1

Tennessee

14

Texas

3,299

United Kingdom

3

U.S. Virgin Islands

14

Vermont

11

Virginia

198

Washington

83

Washington, DC

139

West Virginia 

8

Total

9,434

*As of July 30, 2021

Service of Process

Due to the on-site staffing shortages caused by COVID-19, effective immediately and until further notice, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Office of Chief Counsel is not accepting personal service of process for actions against the Agency or its personnel in their official capacity. Please refer to CBP's service of process procedures for additional information.