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Import duties from the USA?

Discussion in 'Cables & Switches' started by Chipster, Jan 17, 2004.

  1. Chipster

    Chipster
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    I'm thinking about importing some cables from the USA.

    Can somone please give me the bottom line on import duties.

    I have read that some people end up paying tax, while others dont.

    Is it just pot luck?

    Cheers, Chipster.
     
  2. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Import duty and Vat is payable on anything imported with a value of over £18
     
  3. LV426

    LV426
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    First up, the point of origin is irrelevant, except if it is within the EEC, in which case, no taxes are payable.

    From outside the EEC, you can calculate the amount due as follows:

    Convert the value of the package (including shipping and insurance if applicable) at the current notional rate (USD is approx 1.8 at present) to get a Sterling value.

    Calculate duty. Rate varies depending on the goods. I don't know what the applicable rate for cables is, but most things are around 5%. Add duty to the Sterling value.

    Calculate VAT on the Sterling value + duty at 17.5%.

    Then, add a handling charge levied by the carrier. Varies between carriers - anywhere from GBP2.00 to GBP10.00 as a guess. The Post Office charge GBP4.00.

    This is the amount you will be bound to pay.

    Packages with a value less than GBP18.00 are exempt.

    Some carriers sometimes overlook taxes and you get away with it. It is just a matter of luck. Some carriers require you to pay before delivery. Some will invoice you afterwards.

    Some sellers understate the package value. Some carriers take the decalered value at face value to calculate what is due. Some carriers investigate the contents in more detail.

    Most international carriers are authorised by HM C&E to act on their behalf in collecting duty and VAT. HM C&E are not usually directly involved. Clearly, carriers will fulfil this duty responsibly as they will not wish to have their licence revoked.

    In my experience, the Post Office are most likely to overlook taxes. Couriers (eg FedEx, UPS) are less likely to do so.

    The Post Office charges a lower fee than ParcelForce.
     
  4. STOWITBELOW

    STOWITBELOW
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    Customs & excise are very helpful if you ask for advice. Realistic worst case is if you don't pay whats due, they seize the goods until you do. If a buisiness is sending goods I think they're supposed to declare what it is & value, in the documentation. If an individual sends stuff or Business just posts it, I think its lucky dip if it gets checked, & thus you get caught! I've had a few parcels from USA - zero rated for duty & vat, but I don't believe any of them to have been checked. They came in the post.
     
  5. Chipster

    Chipster
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    Thank you...time to get the calculator out.
     

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