Certificate of Origin

About Certificates of Origin

Some destinations require a Certificate of Origin (CO) for certain commodities. The purpose of the CO is to authenticate the country of origin of the merchandise being shipped.

The CO may be required because of established Treaty arrangements, varying duty rates, and preferential duty treatment dependent on the shipment´s origin.

The CO verifies the country in which the goods were manufactured. The commodity being exported and its destination determine if the CO is required. Some nations restrict imports from certain countries; many countries limit the quantity of goods that are allowed to be imported, or give preference to goods manufactured in the U.S.

About the NAFTA Certificate of Origin

The NAFTA Certificate of Origin is used by Canada, Mexico, and the United States to determine if goods imported into their countries receive reduced or eliminated duty as specified by the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

For forms completed online, this application is designed for goods whose origin is the U.S. or Puerto Rico only. The NAFTA Certificate of Origin is available as a paperless document, which can be transmitted electronically as part of your Paperless Invoice package (where available). When shipping from the U.S. or Canada, prepare one original and two copies of the invoice.

The NAFTA Certificate of Origin must be present and attached to the commercial invoice if the shipment is valued at greater than:

-- U.S. $1,000 and is being sent to a Mexican destination from the U.S.

Shipments valued at less than the above amounts do not require a NAFTA Certificate of Origin. Instead, the customer should type the following statement on the shipment's invoice:

"I hereby certify that the good covered by this shipment qualifies as an originating good for purposes of preferential tariff treatment under the NAFTA."

For purposes of obtaining preferential tariff treatment, this document must be completed legibly (print or type) and in full by the exporter and be in the possession of the importer at the time the declaration is made. This document may also be completed voluntarily by the producer for use by the exporter.

How much is a Certificate of Origin?

• CTA members receive 7 certificates per year at no cost; $10 for each additional certificate 

• Non-member cost is $50 for each certificate

How long will it take to receive the certificate(s)?

The service takes 5 business days after request has been submitted and payment has been received (if applicable). After completion of processing, your certificate(s) will be shipped via FedEx to the address indicated on your order form. There is no expedited service.

If you have additional questions about Certificates of Origin, please contact kimberly@caltradealliance.org