Softwood Lumber Fee to Increase on April 1, 2021

On April 1, 2021 the Softwood Lumber Assessment Fee paid on imports of softwood lumber will increase from $0.35 to $0.41 per thousand board feet (mbf). 

The fee is collected from importers and U.S. manufacturers of softwood lumber of Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) Subheadings 4407.11.00, 4407.12.00, 4407.19.05, 4407.19.06, 4407.19.10, 4409.10.05, 4409.10.10, 4409.10.20, 4409.10.90, and 4418.99.10.

The new assessment rate is $0.1737 per cubic meter, up from $0.1483 per cubic meter; or $0.004412 per square meter. 

A conversion factor for square meters to board feet was also added:

one cubic meter (m3) equals 0.423776001 thousand board feet, and

one square meter (m2) equals 0.010763104 thousand board feet

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) began collecting the fee on July 1, 2020, with prior payments made directly to the Softwood Lumber Board (SLB), since first mandated on January 1, 2012.

All Importers of Record (IORs) will receive a refund for their first 15 million board feet (MMBF), but to be sure to receive the correct amount, IORs may want to submit a refund application directly to the SLB. There is also a small company exemption that may be applied for yearly with the SLB for companies that ship under 15 MMBF.

The additional funds collected will enable the SLB to maintain its existing programs, while supporting new programs that will help maintain and expand markets for softwood lumber.

Any questions regarding the increase in softwood lumber fee should be directed to your Livingston account manager.