What steps would a US citizen need to take in order to clear their?
First, you have to be the OWNER of the goods, not importing on behalf of someone else. You have to have invoices that show the complete price payed or payable for the goods at the port of export from the exporting country. If the goods are subject to any other agency requirements (Fish & Wildlife, Drug Enforcement Agency, Food & Drug, etc.) you have to have the necessary documentation to prove that youve met all the requirements of that agency. If it is subject to the CITIES Treaties (endangered species) you have to have the necessary license/permits from the country of origin. Then you will have to post a bond for the duties and other fees due, either in cash or by a surety bond from a CBP recognized surety company. You will then need to claim the goods once they have been made available to CBP officers for inspection and haul them away when they are released by CBP. These are the top level requirements. There could be others, depending on the nature of the goods and their country of origin. Ron (Retired U.S. Customs Service, Licensed Customs broker.)