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ACE Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to the ACE FAQ page. To see the answer to one of the questions listed below, click the arrow next to that question.  If you don't see your question answered above, please feel free to reach out to one of the support resources listed on our ACE Support page.

General

How does ACE relate to the Single Window?

ACE is the technical approach to realize the Single Window.  By using ACE, you are using the Single Window concept. For more information about ACE, please visit: www.cbp.gov/trade/automated.

Will ACE replace the Automated Broker Interface (ABI)?

No – the Automated Broker Interface (ABI) / Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) will continue to exist as the method through which entries and entry summaries are transmitted to ACE.  ACE has replaced the Automated Commercial System (ACS) and there are programming changes required in order to successfully transmit data to CBP via ABI.  Details around these changes can be found at the CBP and Trade Automated Interface Requirements (CATAIR) page.

When do I have to file in ACE? / When will capabilities be available in ACE?

CBP has established a series of remaining mandatory use dates for ACE that correspond to different portions of the trade process.  These dates can be found at the ACE mandatory use dates page.

How can I get started using the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE)?

To get started in ACE please visit the CBP.gov "Getting Started" page.  This page contains basic information about ACE and how to establish an ACE account and begin interacting with ACE.

Where can I get help/training?

To learn how to use the ACE Portal, you can visit the ACE Training and Reference Guides page.

Will entry and entry summary recordkeeping requirements change when ACE becomes the system of record?

CBP is not currently anticipating any changes to the 19 CFR record keeping requirements. Importers will still be responsible for record keeping as per the current regulations. These regulations may be found at: http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title19/19tab_02.tpl.

When will post release capabilities be available in ACE?

Information regarding release dates and ACE capability deployment can be found at the ACE Mandatory Use Date Page.  This page details when capabilities will transition from ACS to ACE.

What do I do if ACE is down?

In the event of an ACE system slow down or outage, port downtime or workaround procedures will be implemented as determined by the Office of Field Operations, and guidance to the trade community will be timely communicated via the Cargo Systems Messaging Service (CSMS).  Filers should continue to work with the local port office regarding the movement of goods. 

ACE Portal

How do I access the portal?

If you're an individual and need access to the Portal, please speak with your Portal Account Owner within your company to have a user profile setup.  If your company does not have an account, please visit our Introduction to ACE Secure Data Portal Accounts page to get started.

What can I currently do through the portal?

ACE Portal v EDI table

 

What are the recommended system requirements for ACE?

To access the ACE Secure Data Portal, a broadband Internet connection, PDF file viewer, and Microsoft Office products (such as Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word) are recommended.  More details and information may be found on the Getting Started Page of CBP.gov.

What happens if my account access is disabled/dormant?

Contact your company's Account Owner or a Proxy Account Owner to have your account unlocked.  If you're unable to reach them you may contact the ACE Help Desk by following the instructions on our ACE Support page.

How do I reset my portal password?

You can retrieve a forgotten password through the ACE Secure Data Portal with an ACE user ID.  Enter your UserID and select "Forgot Your Password?"

If you're unable to reset your own password, reach out to your companies Account Owner or a designated proxy.

What happens when the Account Owner leaves a company?

If the Account Owner of an ACE Secure Data Portal Account leaves the company, a new ACE Application with the new AO information is required to be submitted to change the account.  The application can be found here https://www.cbp.gov/document/guidance/ace-secure-data-portal-account-application.

Manifest

Does ACE currently support multiple In-Bonds in the Rail environment?

No, carriers can only submit one In-Bond with their initial bill of lading transaction. Additional In-Bonds may be added by the carrier or QP filers to the same bill of lading, using a new/different transaction set.

Cargo Release

What is the definition of an ACE entry status of “Admissible”?

 “Admissible” is a new entry status which means a carrier transmitted bill match has occurred for an ACE Cargo Release entry, there are no bill of lading or entry level holds, but the variable release window has not been reached as outlined below:

  • Ocean - 5 Days before Arrival Date
  • Rail - Northern Border - En Route
  • Rail - Southern Border - Arrival
  • Truck - Northern & Southern Border - Arrival  

For more information on ACE Cargo Release Status Messages, please review the ACE Cargo Release Glossary Of Terms.

How do I know when my cargo has been cleared by the US Government?

Messaging from ACE will depend on what government entities have equity in your transaction.  A 1C message is issued to signify that CBP has cleared cargo and it is admissible to leave the port.  A One USG message is issued when all government equities have been addressed.  This may include, but is not limited to CBP. 

For ACE Cargo Release, how will live entries be filed? How will an Officer know that all duty, tax and fees have been paid prior to releasing a live entry?

The ACE Cargo Release application has the ability to automatically confirm for entries/release if (1) entry summary is on file (2) entry summary is in a fully paid status.  If both conditions are met, entry can be released presuming no other holds.  This functionality was already built/deployed for National Sanction List.  Looking ahead, there are certain categories of live entries that may require “review before release”.  These entries would populate in the Cargo Release inbox which offers an opportunity for CBP review before release.

What do status messages mean in ACE Cargo Release?

Released

  • Entry has a released date and all holds, if applicable, have been removed.

Intensive

  • A physical exam is generally required and this status may also include a request for documents.  Entry status will not change to Released until the hold has been removed.

Cancelled

  • Existing cargo release record Cancelled; Entry number and data on file are in cancelled status; Entry number cannot be used again.

Not Released

  • Manifest hold on a bill associated with the specific entry number

Document Required

  • Same effect of an intensive examination in that this status suspends an existing release or withholds an entry release that hasn’t yet occurred.  This status generally means only a document is required for review before release vs. a physical (intensive) examination.

Pending

  • Cargo release entry is on file, but a carrier transmitted bill match has not occurred in manifest. 

Admissible

  • ACE Cargo Release entry statuses “Admissible” and “Released” are two different statuses.  The CBP definition of “Released” in terms of what it means for cargo/entry release has not changed.  “Admissible” is a new entry status which means a carrier transmitted bill match has occurred for an ACE Cargo Release entry, there are no bill and/or entry level holds, but the variable release window has not been reached as outlined below.  After an “Admissible” status is achieved on an entry, CBP still retains the right to examine cargo and/or request document review prior to release.  However, there is no additional action required by the filer once an “Admissible” status is achieved on an entry.  If there are no subsequent holds at the entry or bill level, an “Admissible” status will change to “Released” once the variable window is reached.  An admissible entry status is only applicable if/when entries are filed outside the variable release window.
  • Variable Release Window is the earliest time in the lifecycle of an ACE Cargo Release entry when a “Released” status (or other entry disposition…i.e. “hold”) can be achieved and messaged to the filer and carrier.  
    • Air - Earlier of flight departure or arrival message
    • Ocean - 5 days before estimated arrival date, with vessel departure message.
    • Rail - Earlier of en route or arrival message (Northern Border)
    • Rail - Conveyance arrival (Southern Border)
    • Truck - Conveyance arrival (Northern & Southern Border) 

What happens to entries that have no bill match?

ACE Cargo Release auto-cancels entries after 30 consecutive days with no bill match.  The entry will remain on file in cancelled status.  The same entry number cannot be used again.  Brokers will receive a message informing them that a cancellation will occur on the 23rd day with no bill match, followed by actually cancellation.

Is there a current or future capability to submit electronic requests in ACE Cargo Release for release of shipments under Section 321, outside express air cargo?

Not at this time.  Discussions have taken place but this would be a future enhancement after all core functions are complete.

How do I cancel an entry when no port code was filed?

If there has never been a bill match the entry will auto-cancel in 30 days. If there was a bill match but currently no port code on the entry, in order for cancellation to occur the filer should first submit an update transaction with a Port of Entry. Once complete, a “Delete” transaction can be submitted and it will be routed to the appropriate Port for processing.

Will I receive an SO message when FDA Prior Notice (PN) is not satisfied?

No SO message with entry status will be sent until FDA PN is satisfied or disclaimed. 

For MOT’s 32, 33, and 34 why does the SE 16 record need to be input?

As an interim measure, if no SE16 information is available, please input N/A (for example) into these fields with applicable formatting rules (# of characters, etc.) We are exploring an update to make SE15 & SE16 fields optional for all non-AMS MOT’s. Additional information can be found on the ACE Features Page under the Cargo Release Tab by accessing the ACE Customs and Trade Automated Interface Requirements (CATAIR) link.

How can a piece count be updated after 15 days?

Until we complete development for the edit entry feature, a replacement entry must be filed and the original entry cancelled. Currently, CBP users (like filers) cannot edit entries after 15 days from the earlier of arrival or release. The update we’re making will allow this functionality for CBP users. Additional information can be found on the ACE Features Page under the Cargo Release Tab by accessing the ACE Customs and Trade Automated Interface Requirements (CATAIR) link.

What does “under CBP review” mean?

Generally it applies to a hold on the associated bill of lading. The ACE Cargo Release team has a backlog development story to change “Under CBP Review” to “Manifest Hold” in the SO messaging. If issues persist please contact your local port for resolution.

Entry Summary

Can entry summaries be filed via the ACE Portal?

Entry summaries may only be filed via EDI, not via the Portal. For more information on EDI versus Portal usage, please visit the Getting Started page.

How can you file Post Entry Amendments (PEAs) in ACE?

PEAs cannot be filed in ACE. The electronic Post Summary Corrections (PSC) process replaces the paper PEA process in ACE.  For more information, please review the Post Summary Corrections User Guide.

With ACE, how do non-automated warehouses show proof of release?

CBP recognizes that a paperless environment will pose challenges to non-automated entities such as consolidated freight stations and terminals that do not receive electronic releases from CBP. Consequently, CBP will allow non-automated facilities, on an interim basis, to release cargo based on screen printouts presented to them by filers (importers, brokers, etc.). The printout should have at a minimum:

  • Shipment ID
  • Quantity being released
  • Type of release as well as clear identification of who presented the release information.

For audit purposes, this will satisfy due diligence on behalf of the non-automated facility.

Can the Port of Entry code be corrected on an ACE Cargo Release after cargo arrives and the entry is released?

Yes, the Port of Entry code can be corrected using the SE Update (U) action. Please note that “U” action is not available 15 days after the earlier of entry arrival date or release date.

Why am I unable to file Entry types 41 – 46 for drawback in ACE?

Once the Drawback capability is deployed in ACE, filers (both ABI and non-ABI) will submit only Entry type 47 for drawback; entry types 41-46 have been consolidated to the type 47 entry and will no longer be valid. Each submitted Entry type 47 will be differentiated by its statutory provision, as the provision dictates how CBP processes the claim.

A schedule detailing when Drawback capability will be deployed can be found at the Mandatory Dates Page.

PGA Integration

When can I transmit an entry with PGA data?

CBP is working with the Executive Departments of the Federal Government to onboard their respective agencies to ACE, and to ensure in conjunction with the ACE Mandatory Use Dates.  CBP is currently in the process of piloting transactions with PGAs and trade filers.  For details on the schedule, how to participate, and the status of these pilots, please review our PGA Pilot Rollout Plan and Schedule.

Can I currently file PGA data via ACE?

Yes.  Certain PGA data can currently be filed in ACE.  For full details of available PGAs and their points of contact, please visit the “PGA Integration” tab of our “ACE Features” page.

How do I participate in a PGA pilot?

For full details on the PGA pilot process, please visit the “PGA Integration” tab of our “ACE Features” page on CBP.gov/ACE

Last published: 
Thursday, June 22, 2017 - 07:13