last update: September 29, 2015    

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Antidumping (AD) and Countervailing Duty (CVD)

Petition Counseling and Analysis Unit


Frequently Asked Questions
  Introduction
  Overview Of Trade Remedies
  How to File a Petition
  Frequently Asked Questions
  Related Links
  Glossary
  Contact Us
  Site Index

  1.   What are the differences between the DOC and the ITC?
  2.   How does an AD/CVD investigation proceed?
  3.   Are the services offered by the Petition Counseling Office free of charge?
  4.   Is the counseling I receive from the DOC ever part of an official record?
  5.   Can anyone file an antidumping/ countervailing duty petition?
  6.   Is it necessary that I be represented by a lawyer when filing a petition?
  7.   How do I submit my petition?
  8.   Is there certain information that is necessary to include in my petition?
    9.   Does the Department maintain a list of programs it has found to be countervailable in previous investigations?
  10.   If I harvest an agricultural product can I file a petition against the processed/finished ag product?
  11.   The product that is being imported is not identical to what I produce. Can I still file a petition?
  12.   How can I get a copy of a filed petition?
  13.   I want to file a petition against imports from a country that doesn’t have a market-based economy. Can I do this?
  14.   Country X can sell goods here in the U.S. below my cost of production. Is this dumping?
  15.   What Are initiation procedures?
  16.   What Is the Initiation Decision Memorandum ("the checklist")?


1.   What are the differences between the Department of Commerce and the International Trade Commission (ITC)?

Petitions are filed simultaneously with the Department of Commerce (DOC) and the International Trade Commission; both play separate but dependent roles during the course of the investigation. The DOC has the sole authority to initiate or not initiate the investigation, and analyzes sales and cost from the perspective period of investigation to determine whether dumping occurred. The ITC is responsible for determining whether a domestic industry is materially injured or threatened with material injury as a result of the individual and cumulated impact of the allegedly dumped imports. For further information, please see Overview of Trade Remedies.

2. How does an antidumping/countervailing duty investigation proceed? When do I get relief?

An investigation has several phases, each of which follows a legally mandated timeframe. Please see the Statutory Time Line for Investigations for more information.

3. Are the services offered by the Petition Counseling Office free of charge?

Yes. The Petition Counseling Office has a dedicated staff to assist you in filing a petition with the Department of Commerce, including reviewing a draft petition you may have. You will never be charged for any advice or assistance the staff provides.

4. Is the counseling I receive from the Department of Commerce ever part of an official record?

Any counseling provided prior to official filing of the petition is held strictly confidential; it is never put into an official file and will not be part of any official proceeding. Discussions taking place after filing and material officially filed with the Department of Commerce, however, are subject to official recording requirements.

5. Can anyone file an antidumping/ countervailing duty petition?

Whether the domestic industry includes one small company or several large companies, any domestic industry can file a petition. The Statute defines the specific criteria regarding the various types of interested parties that can file a petition. Please note that those who file the petition must demonstrate industry support according to statutory criteria. Please see How to File a Petition.

6. Is it necessary that I be represented by a lawyer when filing a petition?

No. Although the vast majority of antidumping and countervailing duty cases are brought by legal counsel, it is not statutorily mandated. After initially filing the petition, industries may be required to provide additional documentation that the Department finds necessary to initiate an investigation. If the Department initiates and investigation, it is the petitioner’s decision regarding how active they wish to remain as the case proceeds. Many, if not all, petitioners choose to rebut some arguments made by the foreign respondents, but it is not required. Of course, the nature of the ITC's activities requires the petitioner, to some degree, to be actively involved in the case. Legal counsel can be brought on at any stage of the proceedings.

7. How do I submit my petition?

Petitions are filed simultaneously with the Department of Commerce and the International Trade Commision. Draft petitions should be submitted to the Petition Counseling and Analysis Unit in Enforcement and Compliance’s Office of Policy and Analysis. If you are interested in submitting a draft petition please contact the Hotline at 202-482-1255 or contact us by e-mail at Petition.Counseling@trade.gov.

8. Is there certain information that is necessary to include in my petition?

U.S. law establishes the minimum requirements for an adequate petition. A petition must contain information on the domestic industry, dumping/subsidy allegation, and injury. Please refer to the Section "Elements of a Petition" for detailed information.

9. Does the Department maintain a list of programs it has found to be countervailable in previous investigations?

Yes, please see the Electronic Subsidies Enforcement Library.

10. If I harvest an agricultural product can I file a petition against the processed/finished agricultural product?

U.S. trade law does have a provision permitting harvesters of an agricultural product in certain situations to file a petition against a finished agricultural product in conjunction with the processors of that product. For more information please see Section 771(4)(E) of the Act. Additionally, if you would like to discuss this matter further, please contact us.

11. The product that is being imported is not identical to what I produce. Can I still file a petition?

You must provide a detailed analysis which demonstrates that the product you produce domestically is "like" the subject merchandise being imported. Please refer to Like Product Analysis. If you would like to discuss this matter further, please contact us.

12. How can I get a copy of a filed petition?

Please assistancevisit Enforcement and Compliance’s electronic filing system (ACCESS). There are public versions available for all filed petitions.

13. I want to file a petition against imports from a country that doesn’t have a market-based economy. Can I do this?

Yes, the Department has made specific adjustments to its normal antidumping methodology to take into account differences in economic functionality for non-market economy countries such as China, Vietnam, and others. Further, in 2007 Commerce departed from its 23-year practice of not applying the CVD law to China.

14. Country X can sell goods here in the U.S. below my cost of production. Is this dumping?

Not necessarily. Dumping occurs when imported merchandise is sold in the U.S. at less than the normal value of the merchandise or at a price that is below the foreign company’s cost of production. The Department of Commerce compares the adjusted prices sold in the U.S. to the adjusted price of the foreign like product in the home or third country market or to the constructed value of the subject merchandise to calculate the dumping margin.

15. What Are Initiation Procedures?

If the Department of Commerce has determined that a petition has satisfied all necessary requirements to initiate an investigation, the Department of Commerce will publish a Notice of Initiation in the Federal Register. The Notice of Initiation will lay out a general history of the proceeding, including dates of official filings as well as the scope of the investigation, explain how the Department of Commerce went about making a determination of industry support, and details how the petitioners went about calculating normal value and U.S. price.

16. What is the Initiation Checklist?

The Initiation Checklist, more commonly referred to as "the checklist," is a document generated by the Department of Commerce to assist in properly analyzing the petition. The checklist is submitted on the record of the proceeding and serves to provide the public with additional, more detailed, information on how, for example, the Department of Commerce determined industry support and substantiated the margin calculations.

"The checklist" compiles important information from the petition and can assist the public in locating specific information in the petition that the Department of Commerce mandates for initiation purposes including: a list of potential respondent companies, the scope of the investigation, information related to industry support, information supporting an allegation of material injury, specific petition requirements set forth in the Department of Commerce’s regulations, and a detailed analysis of the petitioners allegation of sales occurring at less than fair value.

Both "the checklist" and the Notice of Initiation published in the Federal Register closely mimic one another, and when reviewed simultaneously, present the Department of Commerce’s complete analysis of the information submitted on the record by the petitioners.

Note: For general information purposes only. When interpreting and applying the law, please refer to the Tariff Act of 1930,
as amended, (19 U.S.C. 1671-1671h, 1673-1673h) and the related regulations in Title 19 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
Counseling Assistance Hotline: (202) 482-1255


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United States Department of Commerce . International Trade Administration . Enforcement and Compliance . 1401 Constitution Ave. N.W. Washington DC 20230
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