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Guidance originally seen in NCBFAA’s Monday Morning eBriefing – March 01, 2021

Due to current port congestion, ocean carriers are issuing split bills on or after arrival. To streamline the updated information for release, the LACBFFA, in collaboration with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in Los Angeles, has reviewed the processing of split bills. Below is the guidance CBP has advised the industry to follow: 

Ocean Split Bill Guidance 

Depending on the situation at the terminals, a carrier may decide to make multiple stops within the same port to discharge cargo. Occasionally multi-container shipments become split when one or more containers are unloaded at one terminal and the remaining containers are unloaded at the second terminal. Often this is discovered after the original entry is filed and released. 

  • The carrier issues a new bill of lading for second portion of the shipment. The original bill of lading is amended by the carrier for the first portion of the shipment.
  • The first portion shows a release for the full carton count of the two portions and cannot be picked up.
  • Carriers are informing brokers that separate new entries are required for the old bill of lading with a corrected quantity and a separate entry for the new bill of lading for the second portion of the shipment.

Instructions: Bill of Lading Update

  • The entry can be corrected with a bill of lading update.

The additional bill of lading must be added to the entry along with any new house bill of lading.-Submit a Split Shipment Release Code 2: Request Special Permit to release cargo incrementally under Immediate Delivery procedures. Entry date will be set to when the first portion of the split shipment is released. BROKERS ARE REMINDED TO CONFIRM THE ACTUAL ARRIVAL INFORMATION AND THE TRUE CARTON COUNTS FOR EACH SPLIT BEFORE CORRECTING ANY ENTRY 

  • Brokers can file a bill of lading update up to 15 days after release.
  • If the information is received 15 days after release:

Send an email request to the Trade Interface Unit (TIU) with a request for CBP to update the bill of ladings.***In your email to TIU ( please put in the subject line “Split Bill Correction Request – Entry XXX-XXXXXXXX”. TIU is able to update the entry after 15 days from arrival of the vessel regardless of duty pay status. 


  • A new ISF is not required for the new bill of lading. The original ISF can be corrected to add the new bill of lading.

Updates to an ISF are to be made when they are discovered. For questions regarding ISF please contact  In the event the bill of lading update does not generate a release messages for each terminal location, filers can submit separate entries for the releases: 

Filing Separate Entries for Each Split

  • For every master bill that is split, corrections to the quantity need to be made at the house bill to match the master bill. The bill quantity needs to be corrected as well as the port of unlading at 2704 or 2709. 
  • All entries, including the split bills must be filed at port code 2704.
  • The entry summary must be corrected with the accurate quantity and values for the proper payment of duties and fees. 
  • In the event the carriers notify the parties about the split more than 15 days after the release, the broker will be unable to do a bill of lading update.

-The broker can request TIU to do the bill of lading update for the shipment.*Please email please put in the subject line “Split Bill Correction Request – Entry XXX-XXXXXXXX”

*In the email, please provide the old entry number, new entry number, old master bill/house bill, new master bill/house bill, old quantity, and new quantity.
*Brokers have the option to correct the carton count for entries that have been paid and file a PSC for the overpaid duty.
*The Centers will process the PSC. OR      
*Cancel the original entry for the first arrival to initiate a full refund for that entry and file a new entry that will set up a new payment of the proper duties for that portion.

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