Pre Owned Jewelry brought to USA without customs declaration


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Hi, I owned some jewelry before leaving USA for a vacation to India. I took them along with me and brought the same back while coming back in the USA. I didn't declare them at the customs and although I went through the red channel, I was never asked about the jewellery I was carrying in my purse. It was worth over $20k. 
Is there anything I need to do to avoid any consequences? Can someone report this?

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11 hours ago, pontevecchio said:

Your personal jewelry has no relation to any customs obligations.

Not quite correct:

While that webpage seems to be more concerned with dealers, it has a section for personal stuff. There may be duty requirements.

I think the main issue is if some of it is from countries that the US has trade restrictions with. Search "blood diamonds."


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Next time declare them whether you are taking them out of the country or bringing them in. They will give you a receipt that you declared them and you will take them with peace of mind. 


The customs are usually more concerned about people who take money/cash and jewelry out in large amounts than who are bringing them in the country. However, if you ever get caught then it is an endless process and your name will be in some sort of blacklist. The involved headache is not worth it. 

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4 hours ago, pontevecchio said:

No blood diamonds in India. The lady is overthinking the issue. Jewelry bought in this country and taken abroad for a visit are not subject to any duty. Next time give the CBP a call and enquire if you have any worries instead of posting in an Immigration forum which really should not be guiding people about Customs issues.

The jewellery wasn't bought in USA , it was bought in India long back and had been used for my personal use since then.

does it change anything?

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It's against the law to import them without declaration.  If you don't want to get them seized, declare them and you will have a peace of mind.



Personal imports of these items are usually cleared informally and do not require a Customs bond. However, if you purchased them while you were abroad, ensure you declare them when clearing Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on the CBP Form 6059B. Imports of diamonds, pearls, rubies, sapphires and emeralds from countries with normal trade relation status are duty-free as long as they are not permanently strung, set or mounted.Additional duty rates for these items can be found in theHarmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) in chapter 71.  

When these items are set or mounted with some sort of metal, they are classified as jewelry and subject to duty. These rates can also be found in chapter 71. Diamonds also require a Kimberley Certificate, more information can be found on the State Department brochure and website



Source: jewelry/related/1

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On Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at 6:09 AM, Tulika123 said:

Well i went through the security check and scrutiny of my hand bag and the officers let me be with my jewellery, so apparently whatever the limit is/was, i hopefully was under it

In India??...May be you lucked also depends on ur connecting flight..I got stories to tell whenever I used middleeast carriers recently both at indian and US customs..

I saw that just for flights arriving from mid east ( that are prone to carry gold smugglers) indian customs sets up a scanner that sniffs out gold.. I saw women get pulled to side with almost dozen jewellery boxes and pleading arguing that they have a right to carry for siblings weddings...Mumbai and hyd are toughest,  Delhi takes it takes an hour for emirates versus couple of minutes for European arrivals for my customs clearance..

The only time the US CBP opened my bags was when I had a two day break in dubai on my return journey...they had a hard time to believe that we, indians, didn't buy gold more than $600 in dubai..they couldn't care less when I declared indian sweets and pickles on other trips, a whole suitcase literally...

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