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TITLE 34PUBLIC FINANCE
PART 1COMPTROLLER OF PUBLIC ACCOUNTS
CHAPTER 3TAX ADMINISTRATION
SUBCHAPTER OSTATE AND LOCAL SALES AND USE TAXES
RULE §3.360Customs Brokers

  (3) A licensed customs broker, who has a bond or security forfeited by the comptroller, must immediately post another bond or security as required by the comptroller.

  (4) A customs broker must send the comptroller a written request to obtain release of the bond or security once the broker has ceased to do business in Texas. The comptroller may release a bond or security once a customs broker has ceased doing business in Texas and the comptroller verifies that the customs broker has no outstanding liabilities or penalties due.

(i) Verification contractors. A licensed customs broker may enter into a written contract with a verification contractor to facilitate the monitoring of exports certified by the customs broker. A verification contractor may authorize by power of attorney his full-time or part-time employee to perform verification services on his behalf. A verification contractor may not fully or partially prepare, issue, and/or sign export certification forms and may not affix export certification stamps to export certification forms. A verification contractor's contract must be submitted to and approved by the comptroller before the verification contractor may perform export verification services.

(j) Export certification stamps. The comptroller will produce or have produced export certification stamps to be affixed to export certification forms.

  (1) The comptroller may change the design as often as necessary for the enforcement of this section. The design will be changed at least once each calendar quarter.

  (2) Only a licensed customs broker or authorized employee may receive stamps. A person obtaining stamps in person must present photo identification.

  (3) There is a $2.10 fee for each stamp.

  (4) The stamps are non-transferable. A stamp is void if transferred to a person other than the customs broker to whom the comptroller originally issued the stamp or to that customs broker's authorized employee. This paragraph does not apply to a stamp that is actually affixed to an export certification form that is transferred in compliance with this section.

  (5) All unused, expired stamps must be returned to the comptroller within 15 working days of the end of each calendar quarter. All such stamps must be delivered to the comptroller on the same date, at the same time, and to the same location. Unused stamps must be immediately returned to the comptroller upon cancellation, suspension, or revocation of the customs broker's license or upon notification that the customs broker is out of business and may be confiscated if not returned. Unused, expired stamps may not be retained, destroyed, or disposed of except by the comptroller. The comptroller will allow a licensed customs broker credit for returned unused stamps. Such credit must be used to purchase new stamps. A licensed customs broker who ceases to do business in Texas must return all unused stamps within 15 working days of the customs broker's last day of business. The comptroller shall refund an out-of-business customs broker an amount of $2.10 for each returned unused stamp.

  (6) As soon as practicable after discovery, a customs broker must report in writing to the comptroller the theft, destruction, or other loss of stamps issued to the customs broker, including the numbers assigned to the lost stamps (if the comptroller has numbered the stamps sequentially). No credit or refund will be allowed for stamps lost, destroyed, or stolen, unless the customs broker provides sufficient documentation that the stamps were stolen or destroyed.

  (7) A customs broker must notify the comptroller as soon as practicable in writing if the customs broker has no remaining inventory of stamps following use, theft, and/or other loss of the stamps.

(k) Preparation of documentation. The comptroller will maintain a password-protected website that a licensed customs broker, or an authorized employee of a licensed customs broker, must use to prepare export certification forms.

  (1) A licensed customs broker, or an authorized employee of a licensed customs broker, is required to use the website to prepare export certification forms and must provide all information as required by the comptroller. Failure to use the website to prepare export certification forms while the website is available is a violation under subsection (q) of this section.

  (2) When the comptroller's website is available but a licensed customs broker, or an authorized employee of a licensed customs broker, is unable to use the system due to technical or communications problems, the licensed customs broker or authorized employee must notify the comptroller prior to issuing manual export certifications. The licensed customs broker, or authorized employee, may provide the notification by calling 1-888-434-5464 and following an automated menu to enter the licensed customs broker's 11-digit taxpayer number and the location number. The licensed customs broker, or authorized employee, must contact the comptroller again every 48-hours for as long as the customs broker is unable to use the website. The licensed customs broker, or authorized employee, must enter the export certification information using the website no later than 48-hours after the technical or communications problems are resolved.

  (3) When the comptroller's website is unavailable due to routine maintenance by the comptroller or technical or communications problems experienced by the comptroller, a licensed customs broker, or an authorized employee of a licensed customs broker, may issue manual export certification forms without notifying the comptroller's office in advance. The licensed customs broker, or authorized employee, must enter such export certification information using the website within 48-hours after the website becomes available. Failure to enter such documentation no later than 48-hours is a violation under subsection (q) of this section.

(l) Reports required. A licensed customs broker is required to file a report quarterly on a form prescribed by the comptroller.

  (1) The quarterly report must be signed by the licensed customs broker or by the licensed customs broker's duly authorized agent and must include the following information:

    (A) the total value of property for which the licensed customs broker issued export certifications that quarter;

    (B) the total amount of tax on property for which the licensed customs broker issued export certifications that quarter; and

    (C) the total amount of tax refunded in accordance with export certifications issued by the licensed customs broker that quarter.

  (2) The customs broker report is due on the 20th day of the month following the end of each calendar quarter reporting period. For example, the first quarter report period is January, February, and March, and the due date is April 20th. If the 20th is a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the report is due the next business day. To be considered timely, a report must be either postmarked or received by the comptroller on or before the due date of the report.

  (3) Failure to receive the correct report form from the comptroller does not relieve a customs broker of the responsibility to file a report.

  (4) A penalty of $500 is imposed for each report filed after the due date. The comptroller shall also impose an additional $50 penalty for each late report filed.

(m) Records required. A licensed customs broker must maintain books and records that include, at a minimum, the following:

  (1) an exact photographic image of the export certification stamp and of each export certification form signed by the customs broker within the last two years. Carbon copies and pages from multi-page forms are acceptable in lieu of photocopies, provided the number of the export certification stamp affixed to the original is recorded on the additional copies;

  (2) a ledger that:

    (A) lists sequentially all export certification forms issued or voided within the last two years;

    (B) identifies the person or persons who fully or partially prepared, issued, and/or signed each form; and

    (C) identifies the person's or persons' relationship to the licensed customs broker;

  (3) an inventory of export certification stamps and records tracking transfers of stamps between the customs broker and authorized employees, identifying the recipients and showing the dates of transfer, quantities transferred, the sequential numbers of the transferred stamps (if the comptroller has numbered the stamps sequentially), and detailed records regarding stamps that have been lost, stolen, or are otherwise unaccounted for;

  (4) a current list of all employees authorized to fully or partially prepare, issue, and/or sign export certification forms and information relating to the hiring and termination of the authorized employees;

  (5) all contracts executed between the customs broker and verification contractors and information relating to the termination or cancellation of such contracts;

  (6) exact copies of all invoices, receipts, passports, laser visa identification cards, foreign voter registration picture identification, I-94 forms, air, land, or water travel documentation, or other documents relating to property whose export the customs broker has certified. This requirement specifically applies to documentation that must be verified by a customs broker under subsection (b)(3) of this section. The requirement also applies to other documentation if the customs broker attached such copies to the original form as provided in subsection (p)(6) of this section;

  (7) a copy of a certified check, company check, or money order made payable to the purchaser, or a credit memo or cash receipt signed by the purchaser, and the purchaser's written assignment of the right to a Texas sales or use tax refund for each instance in which the customs broker obtained a refund assignment from the purchaser;

  (8) detailed records showing the amount the customs broker charges clients for his export certification services and the customs broker's gross receipts from certifying exports;

  (9) information described in subsection (d) of this section, updated and kept current since the date of application; and

  (10) detailed records of when an authorized employee is terminated, quits, is no longer authorized to complete export certification forms, or whose power of attorney is withdrawn. A licensed customs broker is required to notify the comptroller in writing within 15 days of the date when an authorized employee is subject to such action.

(n) Examination of records. A licensed customs broker must make all required records available for examination by the comptroller. The comptroller will issue written notice of routine examination of records at least 15 days prior to the date of examination. No advance notice will be issued if the comptroller determines that notice could jeopardize the proper enforcement of the tax laws and the comptroller's rules. The examination will take place at the customs broker's principal place of business unless the comptroller agrees to examine the records at another location.

(o) Retention of records. A licensed customs broker must retain records for a period of at least two years from the date of the document, the date of completion (if the required record is a contract), or the date of final entry (if the required record is a list or ledger). Copies of export certification forms must be retained for at least two years after the date the customs broker or the customs broker's authorized employee signs the form, regardless of the date of export. For other documents with multiple dates, the two-year period for retention begins on the latest date reflected on the document.

(p) Export certification form and contents. The export certification forms issued by a licensed customs broker must be substantially in the form recommended by the comptroller. A separate form must be completed for each seller. A maximum of six invoices from a single seller may be listed on a single export certification form only if all the listed items were exported at the same place, on the same date, and at the same time. The required information must be completed in English on the face of the form, in addition to any other language in which the form is completed. The comptroller may immediately confiscate from any person an export certification form that is incomplete on its face, indecipherable, fraudulent, or otherwise in violation of this section. An export certification form must, at a minimum, reflect the following information:

  (1) the name and address of the purchaser of the property, as shown on the invoice, receipt, or similar document, or the purchaser's home address if the customs broker certified the export under subsection (b)(3) of this section;

  (2) the name of the seller and the seller's location from which the property was sold;

  (3) the name, address of the place of business which the customs broker certified the export, and Texas Customs Broker License number of the customs broker in whose name the export is being certified;

  (4) the date (and time, if available) of sale, as shown on the invoice, receipt, or similar document;

  (5) the date, time and exact location where the property was exported (e.g., the name of border crossing bridge or airport), unless export was verified as set out in subsection (b)(3) of this section;

Cont'd...

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