History

ALB Consulting Group was founded by Arthur Brunette, Marco Ouellet and Jeffrey Goernert in 1998. We are located in, Beauharnois, a beautiful small town on the St. Lawrence River, just outside of Montreal, Canada. For many years ALB Consulting Group was the customs consulting contractor for Export Links Inc., Customs Intelligence Bureau Inc. and Comtax. In 2008 we began to offer our services directly to Canadian and US importers. In February, 2012, we affiliated with the Customs Consultancy Limited in the UK. This expands our customs intelligence procurement reach to Europe and permits us to offer customs consulting services to clients in Belgium, Eire, France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Scandinavia and the UK.

What Makes Us So Unique?

  1. Perspective

    Perspective

    We look at the bigger picture and bring our clients a great depth of knowledge and experience specifically focused on customs tariffs. Customs duty exposure is complicated and one needs to take into account many factors such as country of origin, dumping, free trade agreements and free trade zones. We start by looking at the big picture for our client and then look an each entity which can affect the client’s duty exposure.

  2. Knowledge

    Knowledge

    Benjamin Disraeli wrote, “As a general rule, the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.” In this business it’s true. That is why we conduct research which is unprecedented to get information which is not readily available. We scour US decisions, European decisions and dig up unpublished decisions. If the customs agencies give unpublished favourable rulings to certain importers, we don’t mind going after the information via Access to Information in Canada or Freedom of Information in the USA. Once we get the information, we use it to argue for parity for our clients.

    Customs consulting is a very specialized field requiring knowledge in the law, logistics, technology, and many other areas. We continually study the developments in these areas to ensure we understand them and what it means to our clients’ customs duty exposure.

  3. Creativity

    Creativity

    Michelangelo ‘saw’ the image of David inside of a large block of marble and chipped away at all of the unwanted material to reveal the David he saw. We call this creativity. In a similar way, we look for and see duty relief opportunities which others don’t see and follow through to create them.

    Here’s an example of how we used creative thinking years ago to generate duty relief and recoveries. In Canada there is a little known provision which permits low value items, which are subsequently given away, to be duty free. We put on our thinking caps and asked ourselves, what products are imported with duty paid and subsequently given away for free? Then came our “aha” moment – pharmaceuticals. At the time, pharmaceuticals were dutiable and drug companies often gave out free samples to doctors to launch a new drug. The duty they paid on the sample portion of their imports was refundable. Most of the importers, who were often sophisticated multinationals, had no idea that some of their product was duty free. Our clients were able to get refunds on the duty they paid on samples.

  4. Tenacity

    Tenacity

    If we believe we are right regarding an interpretation and it is worth fighting for, we are not afraid to take the matter through administrative appeals all the way to the very top and the courts. We are advocates on behalf of our clients to ensure the customs tariffs are fairly applied to our clients’ imports and no duties are overpaid. Our reputation for tenacity has helped us win many out-of-court settlements and favourable rulings for our clients. Some are unpublished and set far reaching precedents. We’ve also won a number of court cases regarding tariff classification.

  5. European Affliation

    European Affiliation

    In February 2012, ALB Consulting Group Inc. became affiliated with The Customs Consultancy (TCC) located near Reading, United Kingdom. TCC brings to our affiliation over 50-years of European customs experience and knowledge. This expands our customs intelligence procurement and expertise to another continent and permits ALB Consulting Group Inc. to help importers reduce and recover duty payments both in North America and Europe.

Expert Customs Duty Reduction and Recovery Services