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Thread: Lacey Act Questions

  1. #1
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    Default Lacey Act Questions

    Hello All. Anybody have any dealings with The Lacey Act lately? The law has become very confusing to many people, especially because it seems to be amended it all the time.

    If purchasing an instrument from somebody in Europe, for example, who fills out the paperwork detailing the different types and quantities of woods used in the instrument? I really don't see how the buyer could do this, so I assume the European seller would do this.

    What if only "legal" and non endangered / sustainable woods were used in the instrument? Would paperwork still have to be filled out?

    Thanks for any help or insights you could give to me.

  2. #2
    Registered User sblock's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lacey Act Questions

    Read this first: https://www.fws.gov/international/pe...struments.html

    This document, straight from the U.S. government, should answer many of your questions:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Lacey Act FAQ.pdf 
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    See also this link: https://www.namm.org/public-affairs/...ey-act-impleme
    The shipper fills out any necessary declarations.

    The USDA forms can be found here: https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/our...n/SA_Lacey_Act

    Finally, if you instrument does NOT contain materials from any species described in CITES, then it does not require any Lacey Act paperwork.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Lacey Act Questions

    Yes, I had to deal with it last July. Here is a link you might find helpful:

    http://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/th...ighlight=Lacey

  4. #4
    Mandolin & Mandola maker
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    Default Re: Lacey Act Questions

    Finally, if you instrument does NOT contain materials from any species described in CITES, then it does not require any Lacey Act paperwork.
    Wrong. Once again, CITES is an international treaty, it has nothing whatsoever to do with the Lacey Act which is a USA only law. To conform to the Lacey act requirements the USA resident is responsible for filling out and lodging the forms. You don't need to lodge the form if the declared value is under $2000 USD for imports into the USA and under $2500 USD for exports. So if shipping the instrument from Europe to the USA, the receiver must lodge the form. The shipper can fill out that part of the form that details all the woods and weights of woods, and send it to the receiver (which is what I do), but the USA receiver is responsible for completing and lodging it. It does not matter what the wood species is, nor whether it is on CITES or not, the form will still need to be lodged if the declared value is over $2000 USD to be legal.

    Note that the form only needs to be lodged for "commercial" imports, not personal items you carry with you. The definition of "commercial" I found is difficult to determine with absolute certainty, it varies between countries, but in the USA if one party is carrying on a business then the transaction is deemed to be "commercial". A private sale between two individuals I don't think is "commercial", but you would need to confirm that with the relevant USA authorities, and if money changes hands they might class it as commercial any way. The safe thing to do is to lodge the form.

    As far as "legal" wood is concerned, it is wood that has not been illegally harvested. Import (or export) into the USA of illegally logged wood is illegal, and that is the main purpose of the amendment to the Lacey Act. It has not changed since it was amended. In theory the importer must undertake due diligence in order to be certain the wood was legally harvested, but they are not likely to worry about the tiny quantities of wood in a mandolin for due diligence.
    Last edited by peter.coombe; May-30-2020 at 6:36am.
    Peter Coombe - mandolins, mandolas and guitars
    http://www.petercoombe.com

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  6. #5
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    Default Re: Lacey Act Questions

    Thanks to all you kind people for your help.



    Quote Originally Posted by peter.coombe View Post
    Wrong. Once again, CITES is an international treaty, it has nothing whatsoever to do with the Lacey Act which is a USA only law. To conform to the Lacey act requirements the USA resident is responsible for filling out and lodging the forms. You don't need to lodge the form if the declared value is under $2000 USD for imports into the USA and under $2500 USD for exports. So if shipping the instrument from Europe to the USA, the receiver must lodge the form. The shipper can fill out that part of the form that details all the woods and weights of woods, and send it to the receiver (which is what I do), but the USA receiver is responsible for completing and lodging it. It does not matter what the wood species is, nor whether it is on CITES or not, the form will still need to be lodged if the declared value is over $2000 USD to be legal.

    Note that the form only needs to be lodged for "commercial" imports, not personal items you carry with you. The definition of "commercial" I found is difficult to determine with absolute certainty, it varies between countries, but in the USA if one party is carrying on a business then the transaction is deemed to be "commercial". A private sale between two individuals I don't think is "commercial", but you would need to confirm that with the relevant USA authorities, and if money changes hands they might class it as commercial any way. The safe thing to do is to lodge the form.

    As far as "legal" wood is concerned, it is wood that has not been illegally harvested. Import (or export) into the USA of illegally logged wood is illegal, and that is the main purpose of the amendment to the Lacey Act. It has not changed since it was amended. In theory the importer must undertake due diligence in order to be certain the wood was legally harvested, but they are not likely to worry about the tiny quantities of wood in a mandolin for due diligence.

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