3 Reasons Why You Should Never Misrepresent the Value of Exports

October 3, 2007
By Michelle Kelley

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A word to the wise–never ask your freight forwarder to falsify, understate, or misrepresent the value of goods on a Shipper’s Export Declaration (SED). Doing so can result in hefty civil penalties, as the Brooklyn-based forwarder P.R.A. World Wide Trading Co., Inc. recently discovered.

According to an announcement from the U.S. Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), the government agency which administers and enforces export controls, P.R.A. recently agreed to pay $250,000 in civil penalties to settle charges that it violated the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).

BIS alleges that “between June 2001 and December 2002, P.R.A. conspired on 41 occasions to make false statements in violation of the EAR and falsely represented the value of items subject to the EAR on Shipper’s Export Declarations.

Given this recent announcement, we thought it would be prudent to remind readers of three reasons why you should never misrepresent the value of exports.

  1. It’s expensive. The maximum civil penalty allowed by law is up to $11,000 per violation.
  2. It may result in denial of export privileges.
  3. It may result in exclusion from practice before BIS.

More information about the P.R.A. settlement is available at the Bureau of Industry and Security’s Electronic FOIA Reading Room (see Case ID E1091).