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Welcome to Livingston!

As an importer, you understand the importance of clearing your goods rapidly and reducing your trade compliance risk. To help ensure this happens, we have put together a collection of materials to help you with your first shipment with Livingston.

It's easy to get started with these four easy steps!

Importing into Canada

The administration of international trade can be daunting to first time importers, but fear not. Livingston has a fool-proof, step-by-step process you can follow.

Topics covered in the guide

Where to submit your commercial documents
Steps to import into Canada

Where to submit your commercial documents

Where to send
Where to send: Commercial paperwork accompanies the physical shipment.

PARS Email:
Instructions: Please include only one attachment (pdf, tiff, jpg, bmp, doc, docx, xls or xlsx file) with all crossing details included. Paperwork for each PARS shipment needs to be in one multi-page file. Please do not include any text in the body of the email because these do not go to a monitored inbox.

PARS Fax: 866-548-4685
Instructions: Please fax paperwork for each PARS shipment separately. Please do not combine paperwork for multiple PARS shipment in one transmission.
Contact: Provide completed commercial documents and your PARS coversheet to the driver when they are picking up the shipment. The carrier will submit them on your behalf to Livingston for processing.
Where to send: Commercial paperwork accompanies the physical shipment.
Contact: Provide completed commercial documents to the carrier / courier.
Air, Ocean and Rail
Where to send: Your welcome package includes a Livingston Contacts file. For live shipments, please prepare an email to your Service Delivery Team and include the following:

Subject line: Client no. 123456, Legal Name, Commercial documents for review/processing.
Body of email: Any instructions for Livingston, or questions for the service delivery team.
Contact: Please reference your Livingston Contact sheet for contact details.
The email address of your Service Delivery Team begins with

Steps to import into Canada

Step 1
Business entity needs to be established as an importer (IOR) by having a Business Number (RM), registered with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)
Step 2
Business entity places a purchase order to foreign vendor/shipper (could be the manufacture or supplier of the goods)
Step 3
Vendor/shipper accepts the P.O and prepares goods for shipping
Step 4
Once goods are prepared, the shipper prepares the necessary documents to cross the border required by Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and fulfills the requirements for any Other Government Agency (OGA).
Step 5
The shipper sends all required documents to the Canadian customs broker and freight carrier.
Step 6
The freight carrier is required to send carrier information to the Canadian customs broker, including PARS control numbers, Port of Entry and estimated time of arrival.
Step 7
The Canadian customs broker will review and enter the shipment information in the name/BN of the IOR, and send the data to the Across system for clearance.
Step 8
CBSA will review the shipment information and conditionally release the shipment, if all required information is provided. CBSA will send notice of acceptance to the carrier and customs broker.
Step 9
Carrier arrives at the border, and if no inspection is required, shipment is released. Notification of release is transmitted to broker and carrier for record keeping purposes.
Step 10
Carrier delivers the goods to the consignee location and Canadian customer accepts delivery.
Step 11
IOR preforms verification that the quantities and products are accurately reflected on the supplier invoice and the Customs declaration entry.

Service Structure

Livingston’s service structure is designed to meet the needs of our clients. Our Client Service Model enables us to provide world class service by understanding our clients’ needs first and then implementing solutions to meet and exceed expectations.

Service Structure
Client Service Team

Your Client Service team is responsible for ensuring that you receive exceptional service at every level within our organization. You have access to dedicated Livingston resources who can respond immediately to questions you may have about your customs documentation, invoicing, duty information and more.

Your Service Coordinator
Your Service Coordinator has day-to-day knowledge of your business and instant visibility to your account history. It’s his or her job to resolve any issue or inquiry as rapidly as possible, keeping you informed through to resolution. If your Service Coordinator is not available, your call will be routed to a team member who will also be familiar with your account.

Regional Manager, Client Service
Manages critical, complex issues. Your Regional Manager, Client Service is available as an escalation resource for your Client Service Coordinator, and is able to offer additional expertise when needed.

Service Delivery Team

Your Service Delivery Team will manage your day-to-day imports relating to PARS or live freight. With this efficient team model, all classification, audit, billing and management functions are handled centrally to ensure consistent communication. The team will capture any instructions you provide as an ESP note in our system and process both electronic and manual entries 24/7/365.

Manager, Service Delivery
Responsible for the overall operational performance of the team, your Manager, Service Delivery manages resources to ensure that requirements are met. He or she will mentor and coach all team members, as well as train them on Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and Service Level Agreements (SLAs), and help create a superior and consistent service delivery experience.

Your Customs Specialist/Import Analyst
Your Customs Specialist/Import Analyst is responsible for working with you to manage your product database including maintenance of your suppliers, product keywords, trade agreements and tariff classification. The Customs Specialist/Import Analyst will also liaise with customs, other government departments and your carriers.

Customs Release Analyst
Processes all truck, rail, ocean, and air entries and captures event-related notes to ensure proper tracking and visibility of your shipments.

Stay informed.Track your goods on the go.

Whether you’ve got a dedicated dispatcher tied to a phone and computer all day, or you’re an on-the-go owner/operator of a small business, Livingston’s Shipment Tracker allows you to know the status of your shipment in real time any time of day or night from anywhere you may find yourself and get up-to-date estimated delivery times

Go to Shipment Tracker

Stay informed

Frequently Asked Questions

Did you need help with your shipment? We’re here to help!
Here are common questions with some useful tips.

  • How do I submit questions about my invoice?
    Submit questions about your Livingston invoice(s) by completing this form or by calling us at 1-855-225-5544.
  • How do I partner with Livingston to move my cargo?
    Let us know how we can help you through this form. Select a service you’re interested in to get started with your online quote or call 1-800-837-1063 to speak to a consultant.
  • How can I avoid paying disbursement fees and charges?
    For the Duty/Tax Disbursement Fee, Canadian resident importers can avoid the duty and tax disbursement fee by signing up for one of these payment options:

    1. Import Secured;
    2. GST Secured; or
    3. Month End Settlement (via Pre-Authorized Debit)

    For the Transactional Duty/Tax Disbursement Fee, non-resident importers can avoid this fee by subscribing to one of these payment options:

    1. Obtain their own bond and pay duties and taxes directly to CBSA;
    2. Ship Cash-on-Delivery (COD); or
    3. Pay our NRI Duty/Tax Disbursement Fee

    For more details around these options and how to enroll, click here.

    For the freight disbursement fee, you can mitigate this by utilizing Livingston’s Freight Forwarding services or by setting up direct payment accounts with your largest carrier provider.
  • What do I need to know about CUSMA?
    North America’s new trade agreement: Frequently Asked Questions

All the forms you need. All in one place.

Here are some important forms that are commonly required for shipping.


More Forms >

On-demand webinars for you and your team.

From entry level to advanced, we have recorded webinars available for anyone interested in customs and trade to download.


More Webinars >

The Basics: Importing into Canada

The Basics: Valuation in Canada

What are my responsibilities under NAFTA?

Instructions for completing a NAFTA Certificate of Origin form

Useful links

Canada Border Services Agency
A-Z Index
Customs Tariff
D Memoranda

Canadian Food Inspection Agency
Home page
Import Requirements
Catalogue of Forms