CARM: What all importers need to know about CARM

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CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM)

What is CARM?

CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) is a multi-year initiative designed to transform the collection of duties and taxes for goods imported into Canada. Through CARM, the CBSA will modernize and enhance the process of importing commercial goods. All importers are required to register in the CARM Client Portal (CCP). Contact Universal Logistics to discuss how the proper delegation of authority will streamline your import clearance process.

CARM – Release 2

Scheduled for October 21, 2024:

As an Importer – What do you need to do to prepare for CARM?

In preparation for registering your company on the CARM Client Portal, determine who your internal Business Account Managers (BAM) will be. CBSA recommends the person who has access to your CRA (Canada Revenue Agency) account become your CARM Business Account Manager (BAM).

The main purpose of this role is to manage the business account and all program accounts within the CARM Client Portal for your company. As such, the BAM role provides full access to all functionality of the portal for a business account and all its program accounts. They are responsible for approving any access requests to your account, including internal employees and your customs broker, and for assigning user roles to each new user.

IMPORTANT: It is recommended each importer assign a minimum of 2 Business Account Managers:

  1. Financial contact – the person who has access to your CRA account and will manage your daily and monthly statements and payments to CBSA;
  2. Operational contact – the person within your organization who interfaces with your customs broker
The user who completes the registration of the business on the CCP automatically becomes the associated company’s Business Account Manager (BAM). A business account can only be registered once, but its BAM can assign other users as a BAM (or other user roles) through the employee management page. Prior to registering your company in the CCP, the individual must have their own set of credentials (user name and password) and personal profile. One of the following login credentials must be used to create an individual user account: The individual user account will be linked to an existing business (commercial client) with a Government of Canada Business Number (BN9) and an Import/Export account (RM). IMPORTANT:  All importers must register in the CARM Client Portal prior to Release 2 of CARM (Scheduled for October 21, 2024) – or they will not be able to import commercial shipments into Canada.

Release 1 (May 25, 2021) allows importers to delegate portal access to employees and third-party service providers, enabling them to manage commercial import accounting activity on their behalf. Customs brokers are able to request access to their importer client portal accounts.

Navigate to the Delegation of Authority page on the portal and select the appropriate access type for each employee or representative to whom you wish to delegate access. The employee or representative must have already created an individual user portal account and requested access in order to receive the delegated authority.

IMPORTANT:  Universal will be requesting “Delegation of Authority” from all active clients. You will receive this request once your company registers in the CARM Client Portal.

To delegate authority to Universal Logistics, select access to “All Programs” with “Business Management” status and check all 3 boxes under the Transaction Visibility Rules. This will allow Universal Logistics the ability to handle your Customs requirements and the visibility to manage your monthly Statement of Account.

CARM requires all importers to post security with CBSA to guarantee the payment of duties and taxes before goods will be customs released (Release Prior to Payment – RPP). This is very similar to the current U.S. bonding model which requires all imports to have a valid bond posted. Importer security is mandatory for all importers at CARM Release 2 (scheduled for October 21, 2024). With over 250,000 importers requiring bonds, surety companies will be faced with an influx of bond requests within a relatively short period of time. Contact Universal Logistics to help secure your bond prior to the Release 2 deadline. An importer must post security using one of the following two options to be eligible for RPP:
  • a surety bond for 50% of their highest monthly accounts receivable (duty and GST) with a minimum bond of $5,000; or
  • a cash security for 100% of their highest monthly accounts receivable (duty and GST)
IMPORTANT:  Without the required bond importers will be required to pay CBSA in advance for all duties/taxes prior to gaining release of imported shipments. CBSA will assist importers to proactively review security requirements for their bond. The portal is expected to prompt importers as their levels approach the maximum limit coverage of the current bond.

CARM – Release 1 – May 25, 2021:

Key Functionality for External Clients:

  • Registration in the CARM Client Portal is accessible
  • Manage account data and delegate authority to your customs broker
  • View statements of account and make electronic payments
  • Tool to help classify goods
  • Request advance rulings

CARM – Release 2 – Scheduled for October 21, 2024:

Key Functionality for External Clients:

  • Submit new commercial accounting declarations with ability to make corrections and adjustments
  • All Importers must post security for duty and GST outlays in order to participate in RPP (Release Prior to Payment)
  • Harmonized billing cycle that aligns payment due dates and provides more time to make interest-free corrections
  • Customizable electronic notification options


How to create login credentials and a user account in the CARM Client Portal:

How to link a user account with a business account in the CARM Client Portal:

How to set up a delegation of authority for employees in the CARM Client Portal

How to delegate authority for a third party service provider in the CARM Client Portal

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