On the day when the UK was originally due to leave the EU, it’s still unclear exactly when, how and under what conditions we will leave.

Whilst we can all but speculate, there are critical business issues that importers and exporters must consider in the various Brexit outcomes, particularly if no deal is agreed.

A no deal scenario

In the event the UK leaves the EU without a comprehensive, legally binding “deal”, the UK will no longer be in a Customs Union, and as such all inbound shipments from the EU will be treated as an import rather than an intra-community movement as they currently are.

If this happens, the same procedures would apply as they do with the import of goods from say the USA, and therefore a customs declaration will have to be completed.

To facilitate a customs declaration at import an “agent” or customs broker would ordinarily be required. It is possible for an importer to make their own customs declarations, but to carry this out several authorisations must be in place.

If no deal is in place by the time the UK leaves the EU, it is anticipated lengthy delays will occur at UK ports due to the volume of customs declarations that will need to be completed.

To avoid any regulatory delays for goods coming to the UK from the EU, HMRC have introduced Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP’s), to operate which you must be registered. HMRC anticipate TSP’s will remain in place for twelve months from the date of leaving the EU and will allow importers to utilise them for a twelve-month period upon notification of withdrawal.

TSP’s will be operational at all UK ports and will enable “non-controlled” products being brought in from the EU to exit the UK port of arrival without a customs declaration being completed at the time the goods arrive at the border.

If you are concerned about the importing and exporting of goods to and from mainland EU in the event of a no-deal Brexit, or if you require certainty on any custom duty operations, we have a team of VAT experts, including a Customs Duty expert, here to help you navigate any complexities that lie ahead. Please get in touch today:

Gavin West – Head of VAT and Indirect Tax

E Gavin.west@smithcooper.co.uk

T 01332 332021


Julian Rosser – VAT Senior Manager

E julian.rosser@smithcooper.co.uk

T 0115 945 4300