Traveling with over $10,000 cash | The Law Office Of Brett V. Beaubien, LLC (2024)

Are you traveling internationally and need to bring in more than $10,000? Perhaps you have been told that it is illegal tocarry that much cash when you travel. In actuality, it is legal, although it may not be the safest decision. However, if you plan to travel internationally with cash in excess of $10,000, one of the first things that you should do is consult with a Rhode Island criminal defense attorney like Brett V. Beaubien to get all of the legal information necessary about your specific travel plans, rights, and options.

Contact us nowfor an initial consultation and to learn about your rights.


To summarize up front: no, you are not restricted to traveling with sums of $10,000 or less. In fact, you could travel with a checked bag stuffed to the brim with cash — as long as youdeclare the amountbeforehand. However, this doesn’t mean that you will not end up talking to officials aboutwhyyou have the cash, and answering questions about how you obtained the money in your possession. If you work with Brett V. Beaubien, Attorney At Law, prior to your trip, you will be equipped to have these conversations without feeling intimidated by the officials or concerned about theseizure of your legally-possessed funds.

To reiterate: there are no customs duties, taxes, or other fees paid to U.S. Customs for the international transportation of the money; it is merely a reporting requirement to U.S. Customs. Still, on an average day in Fiscal Year 2015, CBP seized $356,396 in undeclared or illicit currency.

How to Legally Travel with More than $10,000

If persons traveling together have $10,000 or more, they cannot divide the currency between each other to avoid declaring the currency. For example, if one person is carrying $5,000 and the other has $6,000 incash, they have a total of $11,000 in their possession andmust report it.

If you fail to report the cash you are carrying in excess of $10,000, the penalties and repercussions can be severe. If you are stopped by a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer and more than $10,000 are found on your person or in your belongings, and this money was not declared, you run the very real risk of CBP takingallof the money you were carrying and keeping it. Failure to report the international transportation of money is serious business. Not only could you lose your money forever, but you may also be subject to civil and criminal penalties.

When to Contact a Lawyer about Carrying Cash Internationally

If you are set on carrying cash instead of using an international bank account, making a wire transfer beforehand, or using a travel credit card, then make sure that you contact an attorney who can help you understand the procedure you will need to go through in order to properly declare these funds. Losing a substantial amount of cash due to no reason other than an administrative error or omission can be devastating, so make sure that you are equipped with all of the information you need beforehand.

ContactBrett V. Beaubien, Attorney At Law to make sure that you have all of this information and that you are ready to go. In addition, if you have had money seized by CBP or another agency, contact our firm as soon as possible to speak directly with an experienced legal professional about your options for recovery.

Reporting Requirements Are Not Strictly for Cash

On a side note, reporting requirements are not limited to cash dollars. The same requirements apply for various monetary instruments, including foreign currency, traveler’s checks, domestic or foreign banknotes, securities, or stocks in bearer form. If you are uncertain of whether or not you will need to declare the monetary instruments that you plan to travel with, contact Brett V. Beaubien as soon as possible to get a clearer understanding of your rights.

If you failed to report your funds and CBP has seized your money, your best bet is to contact an attorney such as Brett V. Beaubien who is knowledgeable and experienced with these matters. There is an administrative process by which you can attempt to access your funds with the assistance of a skilled attorney. This is key to maximizing your chance of getting your money back and minimizing your chances of exposing yourself to civil and criminal fines, which can add to an already costly forfeiture.

Categories: Rhode Island Laws

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Traveling with over $10,000 cash | The Law Office Of Brett V. Beaubien, LLC (2024)


Can you travel with more than $10000 internationally? ›

How Much Cash Can You Fly With? If you are traveling on an international flight and have more than $10,000 in your possession, you must disclose the amount of U.S. Currency in your possession on a FinCEN 105 form. On a domestic flight, no rule requires you to disclose carrying $10,000 or more on the flight.

Is it illegal to travel internationally with large amounts of cash? ›

In fact, individuals can theoretically travel with any amount of cash and not violate any law. However, if traveling with large sums of cash, you must report the sum to the U.S. Customs Service if traveling internationally.

How much cash can you legally carry in the US? ›

YOU ARE ALLOWED TO CARRY AS MUCH CASH AS YOU WANT OUT OF AND INTO THE UNITED STATES. To summarize up front: no, you are not restricted to traveling with sums of $10,000 or less. In fact, you could travel with a checked bag stuffed to the brim with cash — as long as you declare the amount beforehand.

Is $10000 cash limit per person or family? ›

Members of a family dwelling in the same home who enter the United States on a joint or family declaration must report on their Customs Declaration Form if they carry money or monetary instruments totalling more than $10,000. Individual members carrying more than $10,000 must then complete a Members FinCEN Form 105.

Can you fly with over $10000 cash? ›

Yes, there are no laws restricting the amount of cash you can travel with as long as you declare any amount over $10,000 when leaving or entering the United States. Domestically, you do not have to declare money. The $10,000 limit applies to all monetary instruments including cash, checks, money orders, stocks, etc.

What happens if I travel with more than $10 000 US? ›

You're required to file a form with U.S. Customs and Border Protection when entering or departing the United States with more than $10,000. Failure to report this could lead to legal penalties, including seizure of your money.

Can I fly with 20k cash? ›

If you are on a domestic flight in the US, there is no limit to the amount of cash or monetary instruments that you can carry. However, the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) security officers at the passenger screening area may ask a passenger who is carrying a large sum of cash to account for the money.

Can airport scanners detect cash? ›

Passengers on internal flights are not subject to restrictions on the sum they can carry, but airport scanners are programmed to detect large amounts of money. Any wads of cash detected are passed to local law enforcement for further investigation.

What happens if I declare more than 10000? ›

When you declare over $10,000 at U.S. Customs, you'll need to file a FinCEN Form 105 prior to entering or leaving the country.

How do you travel with large amounts of cash? ›

Depending on the amount, it might be safer to use a bank wire than take the cash. If you need to take a large amount of cash, the safest thing to do is to place the currency in a money belt under your clothing. It is safe and secure there as no one would know you have it.

Why do you have to declare over 10000? ›

The point of the U.S. customs cash limit is to catch criminals and prevent money from being used to fund illegal activity like money laundering or drug trafficking. Unfortunately, travelers who are otherwise law-abiding citizens sometimes get caught illegally traveling with too much cash.

What is the law for $10 000 cash limit? ›

Federal law requires a person to report cash transactions of more than $10,000 by filing Form 8300, Report of Cash Payments Over $10,000 Received in a Trade or Business.

Is it safe to put cash in checked luggage? ›

This being said, you should never leave any cash, medication, jewelry, electronics or anything you fear losing, in your checked bag because there is a risk they might be opened, and taken by unscrupulous people, while they are not under your care and control.

Is there a limit to how much cash you can take on an international flight? ›

There is no maximum amount of cash you can carry internationally, however, you must report any amount in cash or financial instruments over the equivalent of $10,000 in local currency. You should also be prepared to substantiate the source of the funds. Failing to report may result a fine or seizure of the funds.

What happens if I travel to Europe with more than 10000? ›

All travellers entering or leaving EU territory are required to complete a cash declaration when carrying €10,000 or more (or equal in other currencies, bonds, shares, or travellers' cheques) as part of the EU's efforts to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism, such declaration can be conveniently done ...

What is the limit of currency for international travel? ›

Foreign currency in cash

Buying foreign currency from banks/ and agents authorised by the RBI is allowed. However, if the rupee equivalent exceeds Rs. 50000, the entire payment needs are made via cross checks or demand drafts, bankers' cheques, or pay orders. You can avail of foreign exchange up to US $10,000 a year.

Can I travel with $50000? ›

Yes, there is no limit to how much money you can take with you on domestic flights, but you should be prepared to answer the TSA questions if carrying a large sum of cash with you.

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