Car shipping in the USA requires several regulations and guidelines that companies follow. It is important that you understand and follow these guidelines before you actually ship your car or transport it to another state.
A car carrier company should have the appropriate cargo insurance or proof liability as well as a Motor Carrier Identification Report to get a USDOT number and an Operating Authority number. If you are moving your car interstate, it is best to know if the company transporting the vehicle has complied with the operating Authority regulations and Federal safety guidelines. These companies should also comply with the local and state requirements.
On your part, it is vital that you prepare your vehicle for transport before you have it picked up or dropped off to a terminal. You need to turn off and deactivate any alarms, since this will eventually drain the batteries of your vehicle. All racks should also be removed for easy loading, including bike racks, luggage racks, or ski racks. You should also remove or lower your car’s antenna. If you have any electronic pass for tolls, it is best to remove it, otherwise it will be charged when the truck carrier passes a toll. Also, it is important that you inform the carrier company of any mechanical problems or other issues your car has prior to shipment.
Before you can transport a car into the US, it is important that the vehicle in question should meet the fuel-emission requirements by the Environmental Protection Agency. Aside from this, the car should also have the bumper, safety and theft prevention standards set by the US Department of Transportation. If the car does not comply with the safety standards of the USA, it should be revised to comply with the standards. Otherwise, it will likely be destroyed or exported.
The US Department of Agriculture also requires vehicles being transported into the US to have the undercarriage of the vehicle free from any foreign soil. This is to prevent any transference of harmful pests. In this regard, it is important to have the car cleaned properly.
It is highly recommended that car shipping companies inform the owners the expected arrival of the vehicle so they can make arrangements on clearing the vehicles through Customs. The vehicle is often cleared on the first port of entry unless you have made arrangements to have it shipped in bond to another Customs port that is more convenient for you.
For clearing your vehicle out of Customs, you will need the bill of sale, the original bill of lading from the car shipping company, foreign registration, as well as any documents pertaining to the vehicle. Aside from these documents, you will also need to fill out the DOT form HS-7, and the EPA form 3520-1. To ensure that the vehicle has passed the fuel-emission standards, the Customs officer will check the engine compartment where the manufacturer’s label in English should be placed.
If the car you want to transport in the US is foreign-made, you may have to pay a duty rate. The rate generally depends on the type of vehicle you are transporting. A car shipping world service should be able to provide you with most of the information you will require to transport your vehicle into the US.
To know more about the regulations in transporting your vehicle to and out of the US, you can check out the United States Attorney’s Office.