Shopping Discussion

Received duty fee in the mail, a week after I already got my product

  • Last Updated:
  • Sep 11th, 2017 7:46 pm
[OP]
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Sep 1, 2006
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BC, Canada

Received duty fee in the mail, a week after I already got my product

Hey guys,

I purchased a watch online and a week after I already got it, I received a duty fee in the mail. Aren't duty fees usually received along with the product?

if I don't pay the duty fee there be any consequences such as it showing up on my credit report?

Thanks!
Last edited by LetsGoWings on Sep 3rd, 2017 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
35 replies
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Mar 18, 2005
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This has been happening for years and is an absolutely disgusting tactic by shipping companies that imo should be illegal but is not.

Unfortunately, you will have to pay or I believe they can take you collections after a while.
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Sep 19, 2005
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LetsGoWings wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 4:10 pm
Hey guys,

I purchased a watch online and a week after I already got it, I received a duty fee in the mail. Aren't duty fees usually received along with the product?

if I don't pay the duty fee there be any consequences such as it showing up on my credit report?

Thanks!
You bought something from outside Canada and are responsible for paying duty and GST/HST. You can't simply ignore the debt because the courier company sent a bill for courier charges separately. ;)
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Aug 30, 2017
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Evil Baby wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 4:22 pm
This has been happening for years and is an absolutely disgusting tactic by shipping companies that imo should be illegal but is not.

Unfortunately, you will have to pay or I believe they can take you collections after a while.
I think it's fine, we all want our packages quick . The charges are transparent and on their website, so anyone can see how much duties will be before ordering
[OP]
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I thought that normally duty fees are to paid when the package is initially delivered, no? If you refuse to pay the duty, you don't get your package.

If you get charged for duty after you've already received your package, what prevents them from charging an enormous fee?
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Mokkapot wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 5:23 pm
I think it's fine, we all want our packages quick . The charges are transparent and on their website, so anyone can see how much duties will be before ordering
The person recieving the package doesn't generally get to pick the shipping option. Not only that, but the person recieving the package cant call in and make changes to the shipment.

When I worked at FedEx years ago sending packages to the US we knew right away if a package was going to get additional charges. I'd bet the majority of people are OK either paying GST/HST, it's the additional BS fee they tack on above the taxes for using their broker.

Canada Post has no issues charging people taxes / duties without charging $40+ weeks after the fact.

Let the person receiving the package decide if they actually want to pay the fees or refuse the package at the door, don't surprise them weeks later.
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Nov 28, 2007
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Everyone importing should know there is sales tax to be paid if the value is over $20 and possibly some duty. That has to be paid at the border.

The shipper has made these payments for OP and expects to get reimbursed at the door. For its trouble - and all too often there is lots of trouble - the shipper is entitled to a fee.

I don't agree with people declining a delivery at the door just because they were ignorant of tax, duty and broker's cost.
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Jun 5, 2016
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Marzipan wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 6:10 pm
Everyone importing should know there is sales tax to be paid if the value is over $20 and possibly some duty. That has to be paid at the border.

The shipper has made these payments for OP and expects to get reimbursed at the door. For its trouble - and all too often there is lots of trouble - the shipper is entitled to a fee.

I don't agree with people declining a delivery at the door just because they were ignorant of tax, duty and broker's cost.
I don't agree with a $20 brokerage fee on a $40 package (UPS).
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Oct 9, 2011
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LetsGoWings wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 5:31 pm
I thought that normally duty fees are to paid when the package is initially delivered, no? If you refuse to pay the duty, you don't get your package.

If you get charged for duty after you've already received your package, what prevents them from charging an enormous fee?
they can't just charge you any amount they want to. They follow CBSA rule, 13% tax if you are in Ontario and duty depend on the category of your item. Canada Post charge $10 service fee, DHL and Fedex is between $10-$15, UPS fee is base on % of total value I believe. Before you make any international purchase, you should be prepared to pay tax and duties.

It's your choice if you decide not to pay, I am sure there will be people telling you that but why risk affecting your credit and have your file send to collection over such small amount of money?

Also, if you "refuse delivery", you are no longer under buyer's proection. If the package didn't get back to the seller, seller does not need to refund you.
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Oct 26, 2008
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fremmy wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 6:38 pm
I don't agree with a $20 brokerage fee on a $40 package (UPS).

Let's be perfectly clear about this. This false $20 brokerage fee story for a $40 item gets repeated over and over on RFD.

If the value is $40 CDN then the brokerage fee is only $7 (which is less than CP's flat rate fee).

Admittedly, UPS (and other couriers) have their COD bond fee ($4.25) as well (which can easily be avoided) and then charge tax on their fees.
But still, if you are buying something valued in the $20 to $40 range, UPS Standard isn't a bad option.

Agreed, the step up to the next level at $16.75 is quite a jump. So once you get into that $40.01 - $60 value range, UPS Standard is suddenly not a good option.

For $60.01 - $100 value items, the jump up is more modest but still not a good option.

https://www.ups.com/ca/en/shipping/zone ... rance.page
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LetsGoWings wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 5:31 pm
I thought that normally duty fees are to paid when the package is initially delivered, no? If you refuse to pay the duty, you don't get your package.

If you get charged for duty after you've already received your package, what prevents them from charging an enormous fee?
You thought wrong.

If the item is delivered by Canada Post, typically duties and/or taxes are paid before you receive the package...one of the reasons is because they take their sweet time getting the package to you and get all their ducks in a row before they attempt delivery. However, if the package was delivered by a courier company, they typically want to deliver to you ASAP so they may not have everything sorted before attempting delivery.

Duties and/or taxes are a possibility for any purchase made outside of Canada.
If you get charged for duty after you've already received your package, what prevents them from charging an enormous fee?
Conversely, what's stopping them from charging an enormous fee before you get the package? Works the same way.

You made a purchase from outside Canada, it's subject to duties or taxes, so just pay the bill.
Proud RFD member since January 31, 2007. Feel free to add 3,034 to my post count.
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ALLCAPS wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 9:54 pm
Conversely, what's stopping them from charging an enormous fee before you get the package?
Your ability to refuse the package.
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Which company was the watch mailed with?
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macnut wrote:
Sep 3rd, 2017 7:20 pm
Let's be perfectly clear about this. This false $20 brokerage fee story for a $40 item gets repeated over and over on RFD.
I imagine close to 100% of people in Canada consider $40 and $40.01 the same. We no longer use the penny.

When you are importing you also need to worry about currency fluctuations. You may get lucky but I wouldn't risk ordering anything more expensive than $35 when converted.

I personally find it's best to avoid UPS Standard altogether when shopping internationally.

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