Can I lower the declared customs value to avoid duties and taxes?

Can I lower the declared customs value to avoid duties and taxes?

Short answer:

No!

Long answer:

When Shipvine ships an order to a foreign country, we have to generate a customs declaration or commercial invoice containing information about the products, such as the declared customs value, the country of origin, and the harmonized code. This documentation affects the amount of duties and taxes that your customer must pay to receive the package.

The declared customs value should be what your customer actually paid you for the product. It's reflected in the Unit Price and Quantity fields of line items in a fulfillment request, as well as the Shipping, Tax, and Discount fields.

Your customer may ask you from time to time declare the customs value as below their country's de minimis threshold in attempt to avoid paying duties and taxes. While Shipvine doesn't handle your money and can't know for sure what your customer actually paid you (we'll simply pass through the values provided on the request), and while the odds of you getting in trouble are probably small, you should politely decline the request—it's illegal. The World Trade Organization specifies a preferential order for customs valuation, and first in the list is what the customer actually paid. It's extremely uncommon for a Shipvine customer to encounter any other scenario.

If your parcel arrives in a destination country and customs doesn't believe the values that you've provided, they can seize and destroy the parcel without notice and without recourse. Keep it on the up and up!
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