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Final Administrative Action by CBP

After your U.S. Currency or other property is seized by an agent with the Department of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) or Customs and Border Protection (CBP), you have the option of filing an administrative petition or filing a claim for court action.

As a general rule, the administrative petitions rarely result in money being returned. Instead of filing a petition, the better course of action is to file a verified claim for court action which is the ONLY way to contest the legality of the initial seizure.

What happens if you choose to file an administrative petition and are ultimately dissatisfied with the petition decision (initial petition or supplemental petition)? First of all, you should realize that CBP takes a “hide the ball” approach in order to discourage you from demanding court action.

The letter for the final administrative action doesn’t explain your rights. But the original notice of seizure explains that you have an additional 60 days from the date of the initial petition decision (or 60 days from the date of the supplemental petition decision or such other time as specified by the Fines, Penalties & Forfeitures Officers) to file a verified claim for court action through a judicial referral.

Although CBP is very close to taking 100% of your money in a forfeiture action, you have one last chance to hire an attorney and demand court action.

Don’t make the same mistake again – this time – hire an attorney to help you file a verified claim for court action. This is your last chance to bypass further administrative proceedings which statistically has almost no chance of success.

CBP has a very dysfunctional system for sending the petition decision or providing notice to the claimant of their options. By hiring an attorney, you can make sure the verified claim has all of the necessary information and is received by CBP by the deadline.

We can help you fight for the return of 100% of the money seized,

Attorney for Final Administrative Actions by CBP

If you received a final administration action letter from CBP concerning the seizure of money or other property for seizure, act quickly. If you do not include all of the correct information or miss a deadline, then the government will take 100% of the money or property through forfeiture.

On the other hand, if you hire an experienced attorney to fight the seizure, then you have the best chance of getting all of the money back.

Contact attorney Leslie Sammis for a civil forfeiture action involving a notice of final administrative action by CBP. Many of these cases involve CBP seizing money at the airport before a domestic or international flight.

Money or property might also be seized by CBP at a border crossing, on the highway, or at a train or bus station. No matter the circumstances surrounding the seizure of your U.S. Currency, we can help.

We are sometimes contacted by other attorneys who want to partner with us to act as co-counsel in cases throughout the United States. We can help you fight to get the money back.

Call for a free consultation at 813-250-0500.


Problems with “Final Administrative Action” after a CBP Forfeiture

Instead of explaining the options, the “final administrative action” form used by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is confusing and incomplete. So what does the word “claim” mean on the form for “final administration action”?

As explained in the initial notice of seizure, the verified claim for court action (sometimes called the “judicial action request”), requires the seizing agency to refer the matter to the U.S. Attorneys Office. Each U.S. Attorneys Office has a forfeiture unit and attorneys specially trained to handle civil asset forfeiture matters.

The claim for court action must include all of the requirements listed in the statute and be verified with an oath under penalty of perjury. If CBP does not actually receive (in their hands) a properly verified claim that includes all of the required information, then the property may be administratively forfeited to the United States.

The notice of “final administrative action” advises you that the property seized by the United States Customs and Border Protection, is to be summarily forfeited to the government as provided for in 19 USC 1607, 1608, and 1609, including the amendments enacted by the Customs and Trade Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-382) approved August 20, 1990.

To stop the summary forfeiture proceedings, you must file a verified claim as required by the notice of CBP’s final administrative action, which might be the Port Director of Customs and Border Protection, Office of Fines, Penalties, & Forfeitures, in the appropriate field office.

Follow the directions in the original notice of seizure exactly or hire an experienced attorney to make sure your rights are protected.

The notice might provide that the claim must be filed within 30 days from the date of first publication of the notice of seizure and intent to forfeit. The final administrative action letter will list the date that the first legal notice will appear on the Department of Justice website.

The notice usually provides that the property will be forfeited to the United States and disposed of according to law if no claim is filed by a specified date listed in the final administrative action letter.

If you received such a letter from CBP, contact attorney Leslie Sammis at Sammis Law Firm to discuss the best course of action. Call 813-250-0500.


This article was last updated on Friday, November 20, 2020.

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