If you are entering Canada with the intention of establishing, for the first time, a residence for a period of not less than 12 months; or Coming to Canada for temporary employment for a period of more than 36 months.
In either case, you can import your personal and household effects free of duty and taxes if you owned, possessed and used them before you arrived in Canada. However, if you have lived in Canada before, the conditions under which you can import your personal and household effects may be those that apply to a returning or former Canadian resident. For more information consult the publication called
Immigrating or Returning to Live in Canada on the CBSA Web site.
Before arriving in Canada, you should prepare two copies of a list (preferably typewritten) of all the goods you intend to bring into Canada as part of your personal effects. Include the value, make, model, and serial number (when applicable). Divide the list into two sections. In the first, list the goods you are bringing with you; in the second, list the goods to follow. Goods that arrive later will only qualify for duty- and tax-free importation under your entitlement as a settler, if they are on your original list.
To qualify for duty- and tax-free importation you must have owned, possessed, and used the goods before your arrival in Canada. For further information, consult the publication called Immigrating or Returning to Live in Canada on the CBSA Web site.
When you arrive in Canada (through the Airport or USA/ Canada Border), even if you have no goods with you at the time of entry, you must give your list of goods to follow to the border services officer at the first point of arrival in Canada. Based on the list of goods you submit, the officer will complete a Form B4, Personal Effects Accounting Document, for you, assign a file number to it and give you a copy of the completed form as a receipt. If Canada Customs is not preparing the B4 for you, then make sure they stamp your Inventory or the self made moving lists. You will need to present your copy of the form to claim free importation of your unaccompanied goods when they arrive.
You can make the process easier by filling out Form B4 as completely as possible in advance. Without the customs stamped B4/ inventory list we cannot clear customs on your behalf and you will have to go to the Customs office to clear customs. Form B4 is available by selecting “Publications and forms” on the CBSA Web site or by calling the Border Information Service at one of the telephone numbers listed in
the section called “Additional information.”
Form B4: www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/publications/forms-formulaires/b4-eng.pdf
Extension Form B4A: www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/publications/forms-formulaires/b4a.pdf
Documents also require other than the B4 for customs clearances are:
- Passport Copy
- Immigration visa with entry stamp copy
- Landing paper from Canada immigration officer when you landed into Canada
- Passport Copy
- Work visa copy
- Entry stamp copy
- Copy of employment letter from employer in Canada to state that shipper is being employed by their company
- Passport Copy, Copy of documents as proof of your stay outside Canada for a minimum of one year. These documents can be work visa from country where they worked, employment letter
from employer, rental contract or utilities bills for non-working Canadian National