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  • 22 Aug 2019
  • USA
  • USA
  • ABI
  • ACE
  • ACE eManifest
  • US eManifest
  • USA eManifest
  • Automated Commercial Environment
  • Trade
  • United States Customs and Border Protection

ABI Filing Software

Table of Contents:

What is ABI Filing?

ABI Filing Software Features

Using ABI Filing Software

GeTS ABI Filing Software

Last Updated: Nov. 11, 2019   ABI filing software is an important tool for facilitating cargo clearance and optimizing compliance with ever changing Customs regulations. In addition to software, the right procedures must be in place within organizations to ensure uninterrupted cross-border trade. Many companies importing goods into the U.S. are also the importers of record (IOR) that prepare and file entries and entry summaries to Customs and Border Protection (CBP), either as self-filers or through a customs broker.


Both self-filers and customs brokers use the Automated Broker Interface (ABI) in the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) for data exchange. ACE serves as the single window for all electronic communication between the U.S. government and trade participants. Data submitted by filers in ACE is shared with CBP and other federal agencies to determine admissibility and assess risk more effectively.


What is ABI Filing?

ABI Filing Software: What is ABI Filing?

The Automated Broker Interface (ABI) is the main system through which importers and customs brokers transmit import data to CBP. CBP originally developed ABI as part of its Automated Commercial System (ACS), the predecessor to ACE. ABI was updated to allow entry and entry summary filing, validation and payment processing.


Currently, over 96 percent of all entries are filed through ABI. ABI is part of ACE, and all submitted information are shared with other federal agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).


Qualified participants can use ABI to file entries and entry summaries: importers, licensed customs brokers, carriers, law firms, port authorities, service centers, and surety companies. First time importers and ABI users must send an application letter to CBP. Upon approval, CBP will assign a Client Representative to your account to serve as an advisor and liaison.



ABI Filing Software Features

ABI supports many functionalities:


Entry and Entry Summary Filing

To simplify the cargo release and entry summary filing process, CBP has reduced the number of required data elements. Participants can file entry summaries and consolidated entry summaries that combine multiple releases into one entry summary. They can also file consumption, TIB and FTZ entries, warehouse withdrawals for consumption, and U.S. Customs Declarations (invoice and summary in one message).


Users can file certain "bypass" entry summaries electronically without additional paper forms, as well as customs declarations (invoice and summary in one message) in EDIFACT syntax and summary and invoice data in CBP syntax.


Changes and Corrections


ABI supports validation and correction of electronic information for cargo release. Participants can update entry dates in ABI, change shipping details on entries in CBP status until the cargo arrives in the U.S., and certify entry summaries for release processing without needing a separate 3461 transaction. Filers will receive conditional cargo release results up to five days before the marine vessel arrives, one day for air mode, and same day for truck and rail modes.


One Stop Quota


The One Stop Quota feature allows participants to submit entry form 3461 and entry summary form 7501 through ABI and directly to an import specialist who has been trained in entry summary processing. One Stop Quota priority handling speeds up cargo release. All ABI participants that can transmit forms 3461 and 7501 are eligible for One Stop Quota processing in locations where this is available.


Importer Security Filing

ABI Filing Software Features

ABI supports importer security preparation and filing. The ISF 10+2 rule requires importers or brokers to submit additional 10 data elements to CBP, while carriers must submit two additional data elements at least 24 hours before the cargo is loaded onto an ocean vessel bound for the U.S.


In-Bond Transactions


ABI streamlines the filing of electronic in-bond requests in ACE. Participants can use ABI to process electronic bonds (eBonds). When a Single Transaction Bond (STB) is used to request cargo release, the eBond eliminates the need to file paper-based documentation.




ABI allows participants to view and look up entry/entry summary processing status, visa requirements, quota status and manufacturer information.




Participants can use ABI to pay multiple entry summaries with one check and review the statement of summaries before sending the final statement to CBP. Direct electronic payment to CBP is also possible through the Automated Clearinghouse (ACH). ABI payment methods include check for each entry summary, check for entry summaries on one statement, and electronic payments through the ACH. Importers can assign a single customs broker to receive all their liquidation data through the National Importer Liquidations (NILS).


Drawback Claims


ABI supports the filing of drawback claims, which can speed up the processing of refunds on duties, taxes and other fees. For electronic protests, filing must be done via the ACE Secure Data Portal.


Status Notifications


Status notifications in ABI are sent directly to participants to keep them up to date on important news, issues, system changes and CBP implementations. Filers also receive notifications about the results of edits, validations during testing of entry summaries, and conditional cargo release results for all modes of transport.


PGA Communication


ABI allows participants to file data to over 40 PGA entities electronically instead of traditional manual paperwork.



Using ABI Filing Software

 Using ABI Filing Software: ACE (Automated Commercial Environment)

Electronic filing of entry and entry summaries in ABI ACE is faster and more efficient for importers. Data exchange is done via Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), a system-to-system connection governed by messaging standards and protocols defined in the CATAIR document. Importers can establish EDI connectivity in-house or use ABI filing software provided by a third party. The latter is a popular option because it is more affordable and eliminates the need for huge IT and labor investments.


Several providers offer cloud-based ABI filing software that can be accessed on the fly anywhere via desktop computer or mobile device. Maintenance and technical support are also handled by the provider. CBP has published a list of ABI filing software vendors that have completed systems testing to ensure high uptime and service quality.



GeTS ABI Filing Software

GeTS Automated Broker Interface (ABI)

Global eTrade Services (GeTS) ABI filing software helps importer self-filers, brokers and other authorized participants simplify customs compliance, valuation, tariff classification and PGA communication. GeTS ABI filing software is advanced, comprehensive and flexible to meet the needs of businesses regardless of size.


Based on the software-as-a-service model, GeTS ABI filing software benefits include reduced manual data entry through the ability to create templates, instant responses from CBP through email and SMS alerts, user role management through configured user IDs, accurate data transmission through pre-validation, and accelerated cargo release.


GeTS ABI filing software allows qualified participants to file electronic import data with CBP and other relevant agencies via EDI connection. Filers can also query AD/CVD, Entry Summaries, Importer Bond and Entry Releases.


GeTS ABI filing software is available as a web-based service or integrated (VAN flow) with existing ERP systems. Web-based filing is available for subscribers anywhere with an Internet-connected computer or mobile device. Highlighted entry fields ensure that filers won’t miss any mandatory information. Cargo release notifications are sent via email or SMS and can be tailored to business requirements.


The integration option streamlines data transfer from in-house software to GeTS ABI and directly to CBP via ACE. Integration is ideal for users who want to reduce errors and time spent online. The GeTS team will work with your IT department to establish connectivity and ensure accurate and secure data transfer.


To learn more, visit our ABI filing software page or contact us today.