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Are Cuban Cigars Illegal? | LegalMatch Law Library

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Are Importation of Cuban Cigars Illegal?

As of October 17, 2016, the purchase or other possession of Cuban cigars in the United States have become legal and the cigars can be imported only for personal use. However, commercial importation of Cuban cigars in the United States is still illegal. 

What are the Limitations on Importing Cuban Cigars into the U.S?

There are limitations of how much cigars your can bring back from Cuba into the U.S. Travelers coming into the United States can bring up to $800 or $100 cigars into the U.S from Cuba without paying a duty, whether the cigars are Cuban, Dominican, Nicaraguan or from another country. You can do this once every 31 days. Amounts above that will be taxed. 

Can I Import Cuban Cigars from Any Country?

Yes, you may import Cuban cigars into the United States for personal use from any third-party country as of October 17, 2016. When you import Cuban cigars into the United States, you can only do it for personal use and not for commercial resale. You may bring in Cuban cigars into the United States and give them to your friends and family as gifts, but never in exchange for a profit or money. 

What are the Penalties for Cuban Cigar Violations?

Penalties for Cuban cigar violations can lead to consequences that are similar to or more serious than those for possession of paraphernalia charges. The penalties for illegally importing, buying, selling, trading, giving away or otherwise engaging transactions involving illegally imported Cuban cigars can be very stiff. The cigars can (and likely will) be confiscated. You also may face civil fines of up to $50,000.  In some cases you could even face a criminal trial that could result in jail time.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Cigar Violations?

Violating a Cuban cigar law can lead to severe penalties. You may wish to hire a criminal lawyer if you’re facing charges and need legal representation. A local criminal defense lawyer can advise you of your rights and defenses.

Photo of page author Ki Akhbari

, LegalMatch Legal Writer and Attorney at Law

Last Modified: 01-19-2018 02:01 PM PST

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