Deadline approaches for deferred Customs declarations

Deadline approaches for deferred Customs declarations

Ian Worth, Director, VAT and Customs Duty services
23/06/2021
Deadline approaches for deferred Customs declarations

If you have chosen to delay your Customs declarations for goods imported into the UK from the EU since 1 January 2021, the initial deadline for your supplementary declarations to HMRC is fast approaching.

Under the deferral scheme, you must either submit a simplified declaration or make an entry of relevant data in your own records when the goods are imported, and follow-up with a detailed supplementary declaration within 175 days. This will almost certainly require support from your customs clearance agent, however, the UK’s largest trade association for forwarders and agents has advised its members to be cautious about the risk to them of making supplementary declarations for their customers. Consequently, we should expect difficulties in submitting supplementary declarations for those importers who do not have arrangements in place.

The import declaration is not complete until the supplementary declaration has been accepted by HMRC. If this is not completed within the 175 day limit, the goods are deemed to have not been legally declared, and could be subject to forfeiture and penalties.

What does this mean? 

The scheme functions on a rolling basis; for goods imported in the first week of January, your supplementary declaration must be submitted by the last week of June, whilst goods imported in the first week of February must be declared by the end of July, and so on.

The government has extended the scheme for a further six months until the end of this year, but this does not extend the deadline for goods already imported – it simply allows declarations for goods to be imported from the EU in the second half of the year to also be deferred by six months in the same way. From 1 January 2022, full import declarations will be required at the time of import.

How we can help

We can assist in helping you to prepare the necessary data for submission, to include reviewing your classifications and the relevant rules of origin to ensure your declaration is compliant and takes advantage of duty relief where possible.

It is important to note that if you intend to claim preferential tariff treatment and not pay duty on goods of EU origin, suitable evidence must be held to support your claim.

Please contact Ian Worth or your usual Crowe contact if you would like to discuss further.

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Ian Worth
Ian Worth
Director, VAT and Customs Duty services
London