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CBP Offers Reminder on Currency Regulations

Release Date: 
December 7, 2010

San Juan, Puerto Rico - As the yearly holiday travel season continues, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reminds today travelers of the federal regulations of declaring currency when traveling to and from international destinations.

It is legal to transport any amount of currency or other monetary instruments into or out of the United States.

However, you must declare currency or other monetary instruments in an aggregate amount exceeding $10,000 (or its foreign equivalent) at one time from the United States to any foreign country, or into the United States from any foreign country, by filing a report with U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

The obligation to declare includes if you transport, attempt to transport, or cause to be transported including by mail or other means.

To declare currency you must use the Report of International Transpor­tation of Currency or Monetary Instruments, FinCEN Form 105.

Furthermore, if you receive in the United States, currency or other monetary instruments in an aggregate amount exceeding $10,000 (or its foreign equivalent) at one time, which has been transported, mailed, or shipped to you from any foreign place, you must also file a FinCEN Form 105.

This form can be obtained at all U.S. ports of entry and departure or on the website. (FinCEN Form 105)

Monetary instruments include:

  1. U.S. or foreign coins and currency;

  2. Traveler checks in any form;
  3. Negotiable instruments (including checks, promissory notes, and money orders) that are either in bearer form, endorsed without restriction, made out to a fictitious payee, or other­wise in a form that the funds can be transferred to another person;
  4. Incomplete instruments (including checks, promissory notes, and money orders) signed, but with the payee's name omitted; and
  5. Securities or stock in bearer form or otherwise in a form that the funds can be transferred to another person.

However, the term "monetary instruments" does not include:

  1. Checks or money orders made payable to the order of a named person, which have not been endorsed, or which bear restrictive endorsements;
  2. Warehouse receipts; or
  3. Bills of lading.

Reporting is required under the Currency and Foreign Transaction Reporting Act (PL 97-258, 31 U.S.C. 5311, et seq.), as amended.

Failure to comply can result in civil and criminal penalties and may lead to forfeiture of your monetary instrument(s).

CBP has authority to inspect travelers entering the US from international destinations. Furthermore, Also CBP has authority for departure control for any person, baggage, and other merchandise departing from the United States, to foreign destinations, and merchandise is subject to inspection and search by CBP officers to ensure compliance with all applicable export laws.

To address arriving international traveler's comments or concerns about the CBP inspections process a Supervisor is always available to assist.

"CBP is dedicated to ensuring that all international travelers are aware of the currency reporting requirements to increase compliance with US Law," said Marcelino Borges, CBP director of Field Operation in San Juan and the USVI.

On a typical day, CBP welcomes more than one million international travelers into the United States at land, air and sea ports. CBP officers use the latest technologies and procedures to assure that travelers from throughout the world are processed rapidly while assuring that individuals who have ties to terrorism or a criminal background are barred from entry.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017