Practice Areas

Customs and Foreign Trade

Ryan’s holistic approach to Customs and Foreign Trade cuts through the incredible complexity of global taxation on imports and exports. Our experts scrutinize every detail—from purchase order to payment—and deliver substantial tax savings that improve profitability and cash flow.

Ryan Expertise

Ryan's integrated tax services delivered outstanding value and substantial savings in multiple tax areas, including sales tax, payroll tax, and customs duty.
Greg Sakowski Chief Financial Officer hutton-logo

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Customs and Foreign Trade

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) collects an estimated $32 billion annually in duties paid on imported goods entering the country. CBP may also collect additional ad valorem fees such as Merchandise Processing Fees (MPF), Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT), Anti-dumping (AD) and Countervailing Duties (CVD), and certain Internal Revenue Taxes (IRT) attached upon importation.

Navigating the taxation of every import/export transaction in all pertinent jurisdictions is complex, time consuming, and too often underserved within the limited resources of the corporation. At Ryan, we understand the unique and substantial tax burden imposed on companies that rely on the import or export of supplies, components, or goods to conduct business. And we use this unparalleled knowledge and expertise to protect profitability and ensure your company pays only the taxes they owe.

In today’s economy, it is common for corporations of any size to expand their footprint across multiple borders to stay competitive. At the same time, the requirements surrounding global taxation have grown in complexity. The result in the U.S. alone is an estimated $2–3 billion in potential custom duty drawback left unclaimed by the businesses to whom those monies are entitled. Additionally, other IRT excise taxes paid on imports after entry qualify for export-related refunds or credits, many of which are never pursued. Without insight into the intricacies of customs and foreign trade taxation, sums of significant value are wrongfully left in the hands of government agencies.

Ryan mitigates the negative impact these complex dynamics are having on your organization’s bottom line. Our approach to Customs and Foreign Trade consulting is innovative and unique. Unlike a typical issue-based practice with one or two areas of concentration, we take a holistic approach to your business. We look at the whole picture of who you are as a global trader—as an importer, as an exporter, as a company who, as part of your operation, must haul cargo across international borders. From purchase order to payment, we scrutinize every detail of your process. After thorough evaluation, we present a number of different strategies that will save you significant time and money.

Ryan’s Customs and Foreign Trade practice takes a holistic view of the current burden paid by our clients and provides a comprehensive suite of services focused on providing the greatest reduction in duties and fees, including:

  • Foreign Trade Zones
  • First Sale for Export
  • Legislative Relief
  • Logistics Cost
  • Legislative MTZs
  • Duty Drawback
  • Reclassification


Integrated End-to-End Tax Services

Ryan is focused on your overall tax performance—providing innovative solutions to the underlying causes of the errors we identify—and creating greater opportunities to measure and improve your efficiency, develop a more strategic approach to tax, and deliver outstanding value to your shareholders.