Upgrade to Chrome Upgrade to Firefox Upgrade to Internet Explorer Upgrade to Safari
Legal News | 23.10.19

Moving Goods to and from the EU Post-Brexit

If your business imports or exports from the EU to the UK, then you should follow the steps below to prepare for a post No-Deal Brexit.


1. Make sure your business has an EORI number that starts with GB.

You may have one already but if you do not this may increase costs and delays. An application at http://www.gov.uk/prepare-import-to-uk-after-brexit takes 5-10 minutes and you’ll either receive it straight away or within 4 working days.

To apply you need:

  • VAT number and effective date of registration
  • National insurance number
  • Unique taxpayer reference
  • Business start date and standard industrial classification code – which are in the companies house register
  • Government gateway user ID and password

2. Decide who will make the import declarations

You’ll need to submit a customs declaration. Completing one is complicated and requires new software, so you may want to hire a customs agent.

3. Apply to make importing easier

You can apply to use transitional simplified procedures to reduce the amount of information you need to give at the border. Traders registered will not need to make full customs declarations at the border and will be able to defer paying their customs duties. You can register for this procedure if you have an EORI number, are importing goods from the EU into the UK and are established in the UK.

You may also be able to register to use the Common Transit Convention (CTC) to simplify how your goods pass through customs and when you pay customs duties. This will allow you to move your goods more quickly because customs declarations are not required at each border crossing, you only pay customs duties when the goods reach their final destination and some customs procedures are completed away from the border.

4. Check the rate of tax and duty you’ll need to pay

You’ll need to pay customs duties and VAT on all imports. If the UK leaves with no deal, you will pay different rates of customs duties on imports into the UK from the EU and the rest of the world.

Temporary rates will be in place for up to 12 months, then the government will introduce a permanent tariff regime.

Steps to take:

  • If you have suppliers based overseas who will be sending goods to you, alert them to the guidance on Low Value goods.
  • Review VAT rules in member states where you do business. The European Commission has recently published guidance.
  • If you currently use Mini One Stop Shop or the EU VAT refund system, please prepare your businesses by reading the guidance on IT systems on GOV.UK.

5. Check what you need to do for the type of goods you import

Depending on the type of product you are importing you may need to get a license or certificate to import some types of goods. You might also need to pay an inspection fee for some goods before they are allowed into the UK.


The government provides clear guidance on what to do if you export goods at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/exporting-controlled-goods-after-eu-exit

In summary you will need to consider the following:

  1. In addition to having your own EORI number you will need to check that your importer has one too.
  2. You can apply to simplify the transport of your goods by registering for CTC
  3. Check the new rates of tax and duty applicable on the goods you are exporting
  4. Check to see if special rules apply to your specific goods e.g. controlled goods
  5. Check how you can claim your VAT refunds
  6. If you are intending to transport goods across to the EU check the license permit, fiver eligibility, road rules, export documentation, has all been considered.

How can we help?

We can assist by reviewing and advising on:

  1. The processes for getting the correct EORI number;
  2. How to apply to make importing easier through the CTC and the transitional simplified processes;
  3. Applying for the different licenses and certificates you may need for the import or export of certain products;
  4. or anything else that you may need advice or assistance with.
You can email us at commercial@wansbroughs.com or call us on 01380 733300, and one of the members of the Commercial Team will be able to assist you with any queries.


Posted By Our Corporate & Commercial Team