Empowering the Freelance Economy

HMRC launches new service for import businesses

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Hundreds of thousands of UK traders could benefit from new service to make importing easier

Any solo self-employed traders that import goods from food to antiques could have more certainty in valuing duties and VAT with HMRC’s launch of the Advance Valuation Ruling Service.

The service is said to give importers legal certainty that their chosen customs valuation method is correct. The tax authority claims the service will give traders peace of mind and simplify costings ahead of shipments.

When importing goods into the UK, traders must work out the value of their goods to calculate their Customs Duty and import VAT. The HMRC says its Advance Valuation Ruling Service (AVRS) gives importers “legal certainty” that their chosen customs valuation method is correct.

How can traders apply for the Advance Valuation Ruling Service (AVRS)?

Traders will apply online for an Advanced Valuation Ruling where HMRC will confirm the method used to calculate the value is correct. It is legally binding for 3 years and the trader will use this information to calculate the value of their goods on their import declaration. However, HMRC said that using AVRS is not mandatory.

After an application is made for AVRS, HMRC will confirm the application has been accepted within 30 days and the correct valuation method within 90 days.

Traders can find more information about using AVRS on GOV.UK.

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