Mark A Ivener, A Law Corporation

CBP Proposed Rule Allows More U.S. Returning Residents To File Single Customs Declaration for Members of Family

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has issued a proposed rule to expand the definition of “members of a family residing in one household” to allow more U.S. returning residents to file a family customs declaration for articles acquired abroad. CBP said it anticipates that this proposed change will reduce the amount of paperwork required during inspection and, therefore, facilitate passenger processing. CBP believes that this proposed change also will more accurately reflect relationships between members of the public who are traveling together as a family.

CBP proposes to include foster children, stepchildren, half-siblings, legal wards, other dependents, and individuals with an in loco parentis or guardianship relationship within the definition of “members of a family residing in one household.” CBP also proposes that the definition include two adult individuals in a committed relationship wherein the partners share financial assets and obligations, and are not married to or a partner of anyone else, including but not limited to long-time companions and couples in civil unions or domestic partnerships. CBP proposes to add these relationships to the definition and refer to them as “domestic relationships.” The proposed term “domestic relationship” would not extend to roommates or other cohabitants not otherwise meeting the above definition. Additionally, the proposed changes would not alter the requirements that, to file a family declaration, members of a family residing in one household must live together in one household at their last permanent residence and intend to live together in one household after their arrival in the United States.

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Mark A. Ivener, A Law Corporation, a nationally recognized law firm, has successfully assisted hundreds of clients in immigration matters.