Foreword

This notice cancels and replaces Notice 101 (May 2004). Details of any changes to the previous version can be found in paragraph 1.1 of this notice.

Further help and advice

If you need general advice or more copies of our notices, please phone our National Advice Service on Telephone: 0300 200 3700. You can call Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm or go to www.hmrc.gov.uk.

If you are hard of hearing or speech impaired, and use a Textphone, Telephone: 0300 200 3719.

Os hoffech siarad â rhywun yn Gymraeg, ffoniwch 0300 200 3705, Llun i Gwener 8am to 6pm.

179 Mineral (Hydrocarbon) Oils: Duty and VAT: Warehousing and related procedures
179A Mineral (Hydrocarbon Oils): AVTUR
179E Biodiesel and bioblend
179F Fuel substitutes
197 Excise goods: Holding and movement
197A Excise Goods: Holding and movement (Export shops)
203 Registered Excise Dealers and Shippers
232 Customs Warehousing
476 Tobacco Products Duty
702 VAT - Imports
702/9 Warehouse and Free zones
760 Customs Freight Simplified Procedures (CFSP)

1. Introduction

1.1 What is this notice about?

It is about the Duty Deferment Scheme and how to apply for a Deferment Approval Number (DAN) to defer paying HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) charges due on:

  • imports
  • certain home-produced and home-manufactured goods

These charges are normally payable when the goods are:

  • imported
  • removed from a customs or an excise warehouse or from a free zone

By deferring, you delay payment until a later prescribed payment day.

You can access details of any changes to this Notice since May 2004 either on our website or by phoning the VAT, Excise and Customs Helpline on Telephone: 0300 200 3700.

This notice and others mentioned are available both on paper and on our website.

1.2 Who can defer payment?

You can defer payment if you are:

  • an importer
  • an owner of goods in warehouse or free zone
  • an agent (including warehousekeepers) who enters goods for importers or owners
  • approved and hold a DAN which identifies your duty deferment account.

1.3 How does deferring help me?

Mainly, it helps because:

  • you delay paying the charges for an average of 30 days
  • you do not have to pay immediately each time you want to clear your goods - by inserting your DAN on import entry documentation you can settle a month’s charges with a single payment using the convenience of direct debit
  • we can normally clear your goods more quickly because we do not have to handle payments for each transaction

1.4 How does deferring help HMRC?

For us, it is a very effective and efficient way to clear your goods and collect the charges due. Also, we are as interested as you are in speedy clearance.

1.5 Do HMRC charge me to have a deferment account?

No. HMRC do not charge you to have a deferment account but you must provide a guarantee as a form of security in order to be approved (see paragraph 5).

1.6 Should I read any other Notices?

You may also wish to read the following Notices:

  • Notice 197 Excise goods: holding and movement - if you want to defer excise duty (including tobacco products duty) and VAT on removal of goods from excise warehouse
  • Notice 476 Tobacco products duty - if you want to defer tobacco products duty on removal of tobacco products from registered tobacco premises
  • Notice 179 Mineral (Hydrocarbon) Oils: Duty and VAT: warehousing and related procedures and 179A/E/F - if you want to defer excise duty and VAT on removal of hydrocarbon oils from warehouse
    you should also read
  • Notice 702 VAT - Imports and Notice 702/9 Warehouse and Free zones - for information about VAT on imports and goods warehoused either for customs or excise purposes
  • Notice 702 VAT - Imports (Section 8 - Import VAT Certificate (C79)) for information about Import VAT Certificates (C79s)
  • Notice 203 - for information about Registered Excise Dealers and Shippers (REDS)
  • Notice 232 Customs Warehousing - for information about the storage of imported non-community goods without payment of Customs Import duties and/or VAT

All the above notices are available from your local HMRC office or the VAT, Excise and Customs Helpline. Many of our notices mentioned throughout this notice are available to view on this website.

1.7 What is Customs Freight Simplified Procedures (CFSP)?

CFSP has been developed to simplify Customs procedures for clearance of imported goods, either at the frontier or by removal from the warehouse. Import duties are deferrable under CFSP. Procedures under this scheme include Simplified Frontier Declaration, Local Clearance Declaration and Customs Warehousing.

For more information on CFSP you may need to read Notice 760 Customs Freight Simplified Procedures.

Payment of charges incurred through operating CFSP procedures is a mandatory requirement of the CFSP scheme.

2. What can be deferred

2.1 What charges can I defer?

You can defer all the charges listed below. Later in this notice we call these ‘deferrable’ or ‘eligible’ charges.

Name of charge Circumstances
Import Value Added Tax (VAT) Where payable on imported goods at the time of import or on removal from HMRC warehouses or from a free zone
Customs Duties  
Excise Duties (including tobacco products duty)  
Levies imposed under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) of the European Economic Community (EEC)  
Positive Monetary Compensatory Amounts under the CAP  
Anti-Dumping or Countervailing Duties imposed by the EEC  
Compensatory interest on IPR goods diverted to free circulation  
Temporary Import interest on TI goods diverted to free circulation  
Interest charges on Customs debts  
Excise duty VAT Where payable on the following home-produced or home manufactured goods on removal from excise warehouse:
spirits and liqueurs (including perfumes and composite goods containing excisable spirit)
wine and made-wine fortified or rendered sparkling in the warehouse
cider and perry
beer and other alcoholic beverages
Excise duty VAT Where payable on hydrocarbon oils on removal from warehouse
Tobacco products duty Where payable on tobacco products on removal from registered tobacco premises
C 18 Post Clearance Demands Where Customs charges have been under declared and additional charges are due

You can also defer any deposits for the above mentioned charges.

3. Period of deferment

3.1 How long are payments deferred?

The charges you defer during 1 calendar month (the accounting period) must be paid as a total sum:

  • on the 15th of the next month
  • if the 15th is not a working day, on the next working day after it

This means that you can defer charges for between 2 and 6 weeks - an average of 30 days credit.

3.2 Does this apply to all deferrable charges?

All except Excise Duty. You still get an average 30 days credit when you defer Excise Duty, but the accounting period runs from the 15th of a month to the 14th of the next month. Payment must be made:

  • on the 29th of the latter month (or 28 February in non-leap years)
  • if the 29th (or 28 February in non-leap years) is not a working day, on the working day before that

This excise accounting period also applies to Tobacco Products Duty (TPD) when you defer it at import or on removal from an excise warehouse. See Notice 476: Tobacco products duty for details of deferring TPD on removal from registered tobacco premises.

See Notice 179: Mineral (Hydrocarbon) Oils: Duty and VAT: warehousing and related procedures for payment arrangements for excise duty deferred on removal of hydrocarbon oils from warehouse.

The accounting period to be applied to REDS excise duty is as per paragraph 3.1 above - this type of excise does not follow the guidelines set out in respect of other Excise Duty. See REDS Notice 203 for more information.

4. Payment

4.1 How do I pay?

You must pay by the Bacs system of Direct Debit. We arrange for the total amount you defer in the accounting period to be debited automatically on payment day from your bank account and transferred to our bank account.

4.2 Can I pay any other way?

No. Direct Debit is the only method of payment we accept for deferring duty. If you want to use other payment methods you must pay each time you clear your goods.

HMRC might, however, require you to pay in some other way if an emergency prevents us from collecting by Direct Debit. We would tell you how at the time.

4.3 What happens if my Direct Debit fails?

You will be expected to settle immediately. Deferred debts which are not quickly paid, may result in your duty deferment facility being stopped or even withdrawn. Other customs facilities that are dependant upon duty deferment may also be affected.

Deferred Customs debts may also be subject to interest charges.

If you are an agent acting in your own name but on behalf of an importer, you are jointly and severally liable for any customs debt that may arise. Under this type of indirect representation you may be held responsible for any deferment debts incurred by the importer you represent. See paragraph 11.4.

4.4 Can I pay in euro?

No. It is not currently possible to make Bacs Direct Debit payments through your bank in euro. Such a facility is unlikely to be made available by Bacs and the banks whilst the UK is operating outside of the Single Currency. Until such time as this facility becomes available, payment of duty deferment charges must be by Direct Debit in sterling.

5. Guarantees

(Paragraph 11.5 (Security) - Approval Criteria also refers)

5.1 Must I give security for payment?

Yes. Under EC law all customs debts incurred when goods are cleared must be secured if they are not being paid at that time. As such, the granting of duty deferment facilities depends on the provision of adequate security. HMRC can, under the same legal provisions, also select the appropriate form of security for its Duty Deferment Scheme.

HMRC require security in the form of a guarantee from a bank, insurance company or building society only. Guarantees provide the most effective, practical and flexible way of securing duty deferment charges. Additionally your bank, insurance company or building society must have our approval to act as a guarantor. Most banks, insurance companies and building societies have this approval, but please ask our Central Deferment Office (CDO) (see paragraph 6.2) if you want to check on a particular one. No other form of security, or guarantor, is acceptable.

The guarantee must be on our form C1201, which has been specifically worded, in agreement with the relevant financial authorities, to cover the Duty Deferment Scheme only. By applying for deferment you and your guarantor agree to its conditions and clauses within.

The guarantor agrees to cover each and every sum you defer up to an overall maximum amount in any calendar month. This amount is your deferment limit for the month. It must be enough to cover all your deferrable liabilities (see paragraph 2.1) for any calendar month period.

Please note: security must be provided to cover fully all customs and excise duties that you defer. Import VAT however may not need to be fully secured if you apply for Simplified Import VAT Accounting (SIVA) approval. Please also refer to paragraph 5.8 of this notice for more details on SIVA security, and approval, requirements.

5.2 How much will the guarantee cost me?

HMRC does not charge for setting up the guarantee. It is for you and your guarantor to settle. However, please note that your guarantor can be liable for up to twice the monthly amount shown on the guarantee. This is because you can defer up to your guarantee limit in a month, and then again in the next month before you have paid for the first month.

5.3 What happens if my charges exceed my guarantee level/deferment limit?

If you exceed your guarantee level/deferment limit in any calendar month you will not be able to defer any more charges for the remainder of that month. All further import charges would need to be paid immediately by other payment methods until you either increase your guarantee level/deferment limit or a new calendar month begins.

If you repeatedly exceed your guarantee level/deferment limit your duty deferment facility will be stopped and may be withdrawn.

To avoid disruptions to your clearances, and your deferment facility, it is vital to:

  • set your guarantee level at a maximum amount that is sufficient to cover all deferred charges that are likely to occur in any given month
  • closely monitor your deferment account use and take prompt corrective action to increase your guarantee level/deferment limit when you need to

5.4 Can I vary the guarantee amount?

Yes. There are 2 ways to do this:

  • you can replace your guarantee with another for a greater or lesser amount
  • you can give us a supplementary guarantee to cover your extra liabilities in a peak period

As an example of this, say your monthly liabilities are, £100,000 in normal months £200,000 from February to April (first peak period) and £300,000 in October and November (second peak period).

You could give:

  • a basic guarantee for £100,000
  • then for the first peak period, a supplementary guarantee for £100,000 to run from 1 February to 30 April
  • for the second peak period, a supplementary guarantee for £200,000 to run from 1 October to 30 November

Please note:

  • a supplementary guarantee must also be given on form C1201 Guarantee for Payment of Sums Due to the Commissioners of HMRC
  • for these purposes paragraph 7 on form C1201 should be completed
  • your guarantor also has the option to notify us of changes to any existing C1201 guarantee we hold for them, by completing form C1201A Notice of Amendment to C1201 Deferment Guarantee please discuss the guarantee options with your guarantor
  • both replacement and supplementary guarantees should ideally run from the first day of a calendar month, however, where it is more convenient, an alternative commencement date on the guarantee will be accepted by the CDO
  • a supplementary guarantee must however always run to the last day of a calendar month
  • in certain urgent cases, other options may be available to vary the level of your guarantee - they would be a temporary form of approved security to supplement the guarantee level, please contact the CDO to obtain further details of the alternative options available to you

5.5 Where can I obtain guarantee forms?

You can obtain form C1201 from the CDO (see paragraph 6.2 for telephone numbers and address). Some guarantors also hold their own supply of forms C1201 and C1201A.

5.6 Can I cancel my guarantee?

Yes. By contacting your guarantor or by advising the CDO directly in writing. Your guarantor, or yourself as the deferment holder, must send an official letterhead which advises details of your DAN and the guarantee to be cancelled. Under the terms of the guarantee, a period of notice of termination of no less than 7 days must be served.

Cancelled guarantees will be returned directly to your guarantor once all outstanding transactions and liabilities have been processed and paid. This can be up to 2 months after cancellation of the said guarantee.

5.7 Can I use the guarantee as security in other areas of HMRC?

No. The C1201 and C1201A have been worded to relate solely to the operation of duty deferment arrangements and cannot be used for any other customs procedure or purpose.

5.8 What is SIVA?

(Please also refer to paragraphs 5.10 and 11.7 for SIVA Approval Criteria.)

SIVA is a scheme that was introduced on 1 December 2003. SIVA eases the financial impact on importers by reducing the level of financial security required to guarantee the payment of Import VAT through the Duty Deferment System. Traders must be authorised to operate SIVA.

Approved traders are able to benefit from a reduction in the level of financial guarantee required to operate a Duty Deferment account by not having to provide security for any deferred import VAT charges. This may mean that where the only charges going through a deferment account are import VAT, no guarantee is required at all. Customs and excise duties must still be fully secured.

SIVA aims to provide compliance cost savings for legitimate businesses and should contribute to UK importers, whatever their size, improving their competitiveness.

SIVA is an integral part of the Blueprint for International Trade, the main objective of which is to increase voluntary compliance whilst facilitating legitimate trade. The implementation of this reduced security scheme marks a step towards achieving this goal.

Traders applying for a deferment account can also apply for SIVA, subject to the qualifying criteria detailed in paragraph 5.10 below. The SIVA application form SIVA 1 can be downloaded from our website, go to www.hmrc.gov.uk where further detailed SIVA information can also be found. The SIVA application forms should be completed and returned to:

SIVA Approvals Team
HM Revenue and Customs
Ruby House
8 Ruby Place
Aberdeen
AB10 1ZP

5.9 How does SIVA affect my duty deferment application and guarantee?

Being approved for SIVA eliminates the need to provide deferment security for import VAT only. SIVA does not cover customs and excise duties for which a deferment guarantee is still required. If you feel you are eligible to apply for SIVA, you should do this first and before you make any guarantee and duty deferment arrangements. Once you have your SIVA approval you will be able to calculate the level of deferment guarantee that may be required before you contact your guarantor and submit your duty deferment application to the CDO.

If you are approved for SIVA your deferment account will have 2 limits:

  1. A deferment account limit which must be sufficient to cover all your deferred charges.

  2. A deferment guarantee level which must be backed up by a deferment guarantee and sufficient to cover all deferred customs and excise duties.

5.10 What are the SIVA approval criteria?

(See paragraph 11.7)

Traders must have:

  • been VAT registered for 3 years
  • a good compliance history for VAT
  • a good payment history with the department
  • sufficient financial means to meet any amount deferred under SIVA
  • a good HMRC offence record (serious offences will result in automatic expulsion)
  • a 12-month record if international trade operations
  • a good compliance record for International Trade.

For more information about SIVA please refer to our website, go to www.hmrc.gov.uk (follow link to SIVA via Blueprint for International Trade).

6. Deferment approval

6.1 Who can apply for deferment approval?

You can apply if you are:

  • an importer
  • an owner of goods in warehouse or free zone
  • an agent (including warehousekeepers) who enter goods for importers or owners
  • you do not have to be VAT registered to apply for approval

Please contact CDO (see paragraph 6.2) for further advice.

6.2 Where can I get application forms?

They are available from:

HM Revenue and Customs
Banking Operations
Central Deferment Office
6th Floor North West
Alexander House
21 Victoria Avenue
Southend-on-Sea
Essex
SS99 1AA

Telephone: 01702 36 7425/7429/7431/7450

Fax: 01702 366091

Note: the CDO phone enquiry lines are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 12.30pm and 1.30pm to 4.30pm.

A set of forms consists of:

  • C1200 Application for Approval of Deferment Arrangements
  • C1201 Guarantee for Payment of Sums Due to the Commissioners of HMRC
  • C1202 Duty Deferment - instruction to your bank or building society to pay by Direct Debit
  • C1207N Standing authority for agent/freight forwarder to request deferment of duty payment against Importer’s DAN (see paragraph 8.2).

All forms are obtainable from our website.

6.3 How do I know when I have got approval?

If we are satisfied with:

  • your application
  • the guarantee you have given
  • your payment arrangements

HMRC will send you a Certificate of Approval. This will show your DAN. You must quote this number on each request for deferment and if you write to us about deferment. Also, please ask your guarantor and bank to quote it when writing to us about any matter relating to your guarantee or Direct Debit account.

6.4 What does my approval cover?

It covers you to the limit of your guarantee (or Deferment Account Limit if SIVA approved), for deferment of all eligible charges.

6.5 Where can I use my approval?

You can use it at any port, airport, warehouse etc in the UK.

6.6 Can one approval cover a group of companies?

Yes. Only if all the companies are members of the same group registration for VAT purposes.

If you are interested in a group approval, please ask our CDO for further details and how to apply.

6.7 Must I tell you about changes?

Yes. You must write to the CDO at Southend immediately if you:

  • change your company name, address or VAT registration number
  • cease to trade (including where the business is to be carried on by another legal entity)
  • wish to cancel your Duty Deferment account

You must also send us a new direct debit instruction on form C1202 at least 10 days before your next payment day if you transfer your account to another bank.

Note: your local VAT office do not advise the CDO automatically of any such changes. It is your responsibility to inform us of any changes.

6.8 Can you suspend my approval?

Yes. HMRC can stop you using your deferment facility and vary or suspend your approval at any time for reasonable cause (paragraph 11.3 also refers).

If we do suspend it, perhaps because you have ceased to trade, or because your guarantor has withdrawn the guarantee, you must not cancel your Direct Debit until all your deferred payments have been made on the due date(s). In the event of non payment of a Direct Debit, your deferment facility may be stopped or suspended until all outstanding liabilities have been paid.

Your facility may also be stopped or suspended if your guarantee level is found to be inadequate.

Whilst your facility is stopped or suspended, you will not be able to use your DAN and will need to pay charges each time you clear goods. The CDO may ultimately cancel and withdraw your approval if there has been repeated performance problems.

7. Procedure

This section explains how to get deferment:

  • at import
  • on removal from customs warehouse
  • on removal from free zone

For deferment on removal from:

  • excise warehouse
  • registered tobacco premises
  • hydrocarbon oil warehouse

Please see paragraph 1.6 for the Notices you should read.

7.1 Who can request deferment?

Anyone who has applied for, and received, a registered DAN.

7.2 How do I request deferment?

7.2.1 At import

You may request deferment on the import entry. Charges may be deferred to either the importer’s DAN or the agent’s DAN, or split between the two DANs. Just put the relevant DAN and the correct payment code in the boxes provided.

Note: VAT must be deferred against the second DAN shown on the import entry (that is, DAN 2) where 2 DANs are being used to defer the charges.

Full details of how to fill in import entries, including other payment methods, are in the Customs and Excise Tariff (‘The Tariff’), Volume 3, parts 3: Imports and Community Transit Inwards) and 5: (Trader Input of Entry Data to Customs Computer (CHIEF)).

Please note, you cannot request deferment on:

  • importations for which no entry is required (unless you make entry for them)
  • postal importations, except those with a value exceeding £2,000 and entered on form C88A European Community

7.2.2 On removal from an approved customs and excise warehouse

You request deferment on the entry or warrant for removal. This also applies to scheduling or other approved simplified arrangements where the entry is presented after the removal of the goods.

Please note, you cannot defer charges due to deficiencies in warehouse or in transit.

7.2.3 On removal from free zone

You request deferment on the entry you present when you remove goods from the zone.

7.3 When does the deferment start?

On the day we enter the charges into our computerised entry processing system.

This is usually the day we authorise the clearance or the removal of the goods.

Confirmation of this date will be visible on subsequent DD1723 Deferment Statements under the heading Accounting date. These statements are sent to you on a weekly basis (see paragraph 9.1).

7.4 Can you refuse to allow me deferment?

Yes. HMRC are most likely to do this if, for example:

  • you have exceeded your guarantee limit for the calendar month
  • the amount of guarantee left for the calendar month does not fully cover the deferment requested
  • we have stopped the use of your account due to payment, or other compliance, problems

Remember, if HMRC refuse you deferment, clearance will be delayed. That is why it is so important for you to have the right guarantee level or to increase it in sufficient time to allow for any large import or peak period liabilities (see paragraph 5.3).

7.5 What about adjustments?

Under declarations

When, after HMRC have allowed deferment, it is found that more was payable on the entry we will normally adjust your deferment account before the Direct Debit day on which you pay. Where this is not possible, you must pay the balance immediately.

Over declarations

When, on the other hand, it is found that less was payable, we will again normally adjust your deferment account before the Direct Debit day. Where this is not possible, Customs will repay the amount over declared on, or soon after, the payment day.

You should notify the port of entry (as quoted on your DD1723 statement) if any adjustment action is required, as all original source data is held there and not in the CDO. Alternatively, you should contact the forwarding agent responsible for entering the goods on your behalf.

However, HMRC do not normally repay over declared VAT to VAT registered traders. We expect importers and owners to recover the amount on their next VAT returns, subject to the normal rules governing the deduction of input tax. Please read Notice 702 for further information. This covers our position on VAT in more detail.

8. Authorising your agent

8.1 Can my agent request deferment for me?

Yes. An agent making an entry for you can request deferment of charges against your DAN. But you must authorise this action.

8.2 How do I authorise?

You can do it in one of 2 ways:

On form C1207N - this is a standing authority which allows your agent to use your DAN whenever or wherever entering goods for you.

The form is also used to authorise your agent to access the guarantee balance available on your deferment account.

You must send this form to the CDO (see paragraph 6.2) allowing at least 3 working days from receipt to process it. You must also advise the CDO in writing of any authority you wish to cancel.

On form C1207S - specific authority to agent to request deferment of duty payment against Importer’s/Proprietors Approval Number. This is a one-off authority in respect of a specific consignment or removal of goods.

You must give it to your agent to present with the entry.

Please note, entries with specific authorities usually take longer to process, which means a slower clearance rate.

HMRC send you form C1207N with your deferment application forms. Additional copies of C1207N can be obtained from the CDO.

8.3 Can I give urgent authorisation to an agent?

Yes. For deferment at import you may sometimes need to authorise an agent at very short notice. This may happen, for example, if your goods are diverted to another port. If we insisted on the proper authority form, clearance might be delayed, so we will also accept the following methods:

a. a fax (on the importer’s ‘company headed’ paper) signed by a responsible officer of your company and worded as follows:

To HM Revenue and Customs at …………. (name of port/airport)

  1. I am/we are ……………………… (name of business)

  2. My/Our phone number is …………………. (phone no)

  3. I/We hereby authorise ……………… (name of agent) to use my/our deferment approval number ……………………… (DAN) when requesting deferment of the charges on the goods imported by me/us on the attached entry.

  4. Signed ……………………………….…….

  5. Status ………………………………………

or:

b. a fax copy of a completed form C1207S signed by a responsible officer of your company.

You must fax this authority to your agent for them to present to Customs with the entry. Your agent must present the facsimile copy of a. or b. with the entry.

c. a fax copy of a completed form C1207N to the CDO (see paragraph 6.2) is also acceptable

d. an email from the importer, sent to the Port of Entry, giving specific authority and providing a contact name and phone number for the importer, along with all other importer and agent’s details. (Please contact Customs at Port of Entry for appropriate email address).

Please note that both forms C1207N and C1207S are available from our website.

8.4 Can sub-agents request deferment?

If you are an agent and another agent instructs you to make entry for an importer (perhaps because the other agent does not have an office at the port concerned) you can request deferment in the following ways.

a. Where you (the sub-agent) are shown as the declarant on the entry.

  • against your own DAN
  • against the importer’s DAN, if that importer has authorised you under paragraph 8.2 or 8.3 above

b. Where the main agent is shown as the declarant on the entry and you (the sub-agent) sign the declaration as a representative of the main agent:

  • against the importer’s DAN, if that importer has authorised the main agent
  • against the main agent’s DAN

9. Statements

This section does not apply to deferment of:

  • Tobacco Products Duty on removal from registered tobacco premises
  • Hydrocarbon Oil Excise Duty on removal from warehouse

More information is contained in Notice 476 and Notice 179 respectively.

9.1 Do you send me statements?

Yes. HMRC send you statements at approximately weekly intervals, that is, 4 for each calendar month. We call this the periodic deferment statement. It summarises details of your deferments (including Excise Duty) at each of our accounting centres. It also shows the total amount you have deferred so far in the month. This helps you to monitor your deferred transactions against your guarantee limit.

If you have a query, you should contact your agent in the first instance. If the query cannot be resolved with your agent, you should take it up immediately with the accounting centre identified on the statement by providing the relevant transaction details.

Please note that the CDO should not be contacted with statement transaction queries. However, if required, they can provide a list of accounting centres with their addresses and phone numbers.

HMRC do not normally send out ‘NIL’ statements, unless they contain amounts brought forward from previous statements.

It is important that you retain the original versions of your (DD1723) deferment statements. In the event that copies are required, requests can be made to the CDO at Southend (see paragraph 6.2). However, requests for large numbers of statements will only be considered on their individual merits.

Note: if any alterations are required to your (DD1723) statement address, or if a ‘For attention of’ would be beneficial to you, please notify the CDO in writing of your requirements.

9.2 Do you tell me how much my Direct Debits will be?

Yes. In addition to the amounts advised on your periodic deferment statements, the total amount for Direct Debit on payment day (see paragraphs 3.1 and 3.2) will be shown on a:

  • final periodic statement - No.4 statement DD1723
  • separate supplementary statement (DD1723S) that we will send you if appropriate

A requirement of the Bacs system of Direct Debit is that 14 days notice of the amount to be debited is usually given. As charges may be deferred up to a few days before payment day we are unable to comply with this requirement. The Direct Debit instruction, form C1202, contains a statement (Direct Debit Guarantee) that less than 14 days notice will be given before the Direct Debit is made.

9.3 Are the statements evidence for input tax deduction?

No. Deferment statements may not be used as evidence for input tax deduction on VAT returns. This is normally provided by a monthly VAT Certificate (C79) that is sent to your VAT registered address on or about the 12th of each month.

The C79 will show all import VAT that has been paid by you during the month. Please note that the monthly total on your deferment statement will not necessarily reconcile with your VAT Certificate (C79) as deferment is only a part of all VAT transactions - some of which may have been paid by other payment methods. Excise and customs duties appearing on your deferment statement will also not be shown on your C79.

Copies of VAT Certificates can be requested by fax to The VCU Microfilm Unit on 01702 367385. Please note that these are not available from the CDO.

Refer to Notice 702 (Section 8 - Import VAT certificates) for further information.

Any queries relating to specific transactions on your VAT certificates must be referred in the first instance to your agent and then to the accounting centre identified on the certificate. Please note that VAT certificate queries should not be directed to the CDO.

9.4 Does my statement contain any other information?

HMRC will occasionally use either a message box on the statement or enclose an additional sheet to give you news affecting your duty deferment facility.

9.5 Can I get my statements electronically?

Yes. The Duty Deferment Electronic Statements (DDES) service offers a facility to obtain copies of your periodic deferment statements electronically via the internet. The facility provides the option to view, print or download selected statements.

In order to use DDES you must register, enrol and activate the service through a central registration process within the Government Gateway. The Government Gateway is an internet site managed by the Cabinet Office and is the starting point for all electronic government services.

Once you have completed the central registration process you can access DDES by going into the HMRC website and select the ‘Electronic Services’ and ‘DDES’ links.

If you are interested in using this service, more information on electronic services is provided on the Government Gateway website and the HMRC website - simply select the ‘Electronic Services’ and ‘DDES’ links.

10. Miscellaneous

10.1 What happens with bulked entries?

If you are an agent making a bulked entry for goods consigned to several importers, you may use your own account to defer the charges payable. You cannot defer these charges against individual importers accounts.

10.2 Can I defer on Inward Processing Relief or Processing under Customs Control goods entered for community use?

If you enter for community use goods from the Inward Processing Relief, or the Processing under Customs Control regimes, you may defer the duties or levies, which become payable. You should request deferment on the relevant free circulation entry.

Note: Direct Trader Input processing queries must be directed to the helpdesk at the Entry Processing Unit at the Port of Entry concerned. These queries should not be directed to the CDO.

10.3 Can Post Clearance Demands be deferred?

Yes. The additional charges on an entry that has already been cleared can be deferred provided that consent is given on form C18 Post Clearance Demand.

11. Duty Deferment approval criteria

The provisions for managing the revenue of HMRC, through the operation of the Duty Deferment Scheme, are set out in the following legislation:

  • The Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 (Sections 6 (2), 45, 93 and 127A)
  • Council Regulation (EEC) No 2913/92 (The Community Customs Code) - Articles 224 to 228
  • The Customs Duties (Deferred Payment) Regulations 1976 (Statutory Instrument 1976/1223) and 1978 Amendment (Statutory Instrument 1978/1725)
  • The Excise Duties (Deferred Payment) Regulations 1992 (Statutory Instrument 1992/3152)
  • The Excise Goods (Holding, Movement, Warehousing and REDS) Regulations 1992 (Statutory Instrument 1992/3135)
  • The Tobacco Products Regulations 2001 (Statutory Instrument 2001/1712)

By applying to operate a deferment account, you (the deferment holder) agree to meet the following approval criteria.

11.2 Financial standing

You must have sufficient financial means to ensure all charges deferred during each respective accounting period are paid in full on the due date.

You must notify us immediately of any changes to your financial status by contacting the CDO.

11.3 Payment

You must pay all deferred charges by Bacs Direct Debit. This is the only method of payment that we will accept. If an emergency prevents us from collecting charges in this way, we reserve the right to collect deferred charges by an alternative payment method upon prior notification.

HMRC reserve the right to suspend a duty deferment facility if the Direct Debit instruction is cancelled without a suitable replacement being provided.

HMRC reserve the right to suspend a duty deferment facility that has outstanding payments. You will be given notification of such action.

HMRC reserve the right to charge interest on late payment of deferred customs debts.

HMRC reserve the right to revoke a duty deferment facility that persistently has outstanding payments. You will be given prior written notification of such action.

Where a deferment facility is revoked, you will have the right to appeal against this decision.

You must notify us immediately if your bank details change. You must arrange for your bank to notify us of the new details, and send us a new Direct Debit instruction, if necessary, at least 10 days before your next payment is due. You must not cancel your previous Direct Debit instruction until the new one is in place.

If you wish to cancel your duty deferment facility you must not cancel your direct debit instruction until all outstanding deferred payments have been made on the due date(s).

11.4 Agents/third parties

HMRC reserve the right to hold an agent/third party who acts as an indirect representative of an importer on an entry, using either their own deferment facility or an importer’s deferment facility to pay charges, jointly and severally liable for any deferment debt that may arise as a result of that entry.

Agents/third parties who act as declarants on an import entry, and use their own deferment facility to pay charges on behalf of someone else, will be held jointly and severally liable for any deferment debts that may arise as a result of that entry.

11.5 Security

You must provide security for all deferred charges in the form of a guarantee from an independent guarantor. The guarantor must be approved by us to provide guarantees for this purpose.

The guarantee provided must be sufficient to cover all deferred charges in any calendar month. You must ensure all deferred charges for each calendar month remain within your guarantee level.

You can apply to have your guarantee level revised at any time by providing a new guarantee or a Notice of Amendment from your guarantor.

HMRC reserve the right to refuse to allow charges to be deferred if your guarantee level is exceeded.

HMRC reserve the right to suspend and revoke a duty deferment facility if the guarantee level is persistently exceeded. You will be given prior written notification of such action.

HMRC reserve the right to suspend and revoke a duty deferment facility if the guarantee is cancelled, or withdrawn, without a suitable replacement being provided.

Where a deferment facility is revoked, you will have the right to appeal against this decision.

If you have approval to operate a reduced security scheme for specific types of deferred tax, you must continue to provide full security for all other deferred taxes (see paragraph 11.7 (SIVA)).

11.6 Changes

You must notify us by contacting the CDO immediately of any changes that affect your duty deferment facility. Namely if:

  • your bank account or guarantor changes
  • your company name changes - a Certification of Incorporation Upon Change of Name must be provided
  • your address changes
  • your VAT registration number changes
  • you cease to trade or if the business is to be carried on by another legal entity
  • you wish to cancel your duty deferment account

HMRC reserve the right to suspend duty deferment facilities if changes are not notified to us promptly.

11.7 SIVA

If you have SIVA approval to operate reduced security for deferred import VAT, you must continue to provide full security for all other deferred taxes.

SIVA approval will only allow you to reduce your deferment guarantee in respect of import VAT paid through your duty deferment account. You must ensure that the guarantee provided is sufficient to cover your other liabilities at all times.

Where a deferment guarantee is provided, the criteria outlined in paragraph 11.5 above must continue to be met.

Where reduced security applies, you must provide a schedule (form SIVA 2) of your anticipated deferred charges per calendar month in order to determine your level of guarantee and set a Deferment Account Limit.

HMRC have final responsibility for determining if your level of guarantee is adequate and reserve the right to refuse any requests for reduction.

HMRC have final responsibility for setting the Deferment Account Limit and reserve the right to revise the limit at any time. This limit will be advised to you in writing.

You can apply to have your Deferment Account Limit revised at any time by completing a new schedule (form SIVA 2) of deferred charges.

You must ensure all deferred charges remain within the Deferment Account Limit for each calendar month.

HMRC reserve the right to refuse to allow charges to be deferred if your Deferment Account Limit is exceeded.

HMRC reserve the right to suspend and revoke duty deferment facilities where Deferment Account Limits are persistently exceeded. You will be given prior written notification of such action.

Where a deferment facility is revoked, you will have the right to appeal against this decision.

You must continue to meet the approval criteria for operating duty deferment and be compliant in all your dealings with us. We reserve the right to withdraw your SIVA approval, and demand full security, at any time if your level of compliance falls.

11.8 Variations

HMRC reserve the right to vary or revise these approval criteria by prior notification. Where a criteria is added, revised or revoked it will not affect the validity of any of the others.

Do you have any comments?

HMRC would be pleased to receive any comments or suggestions you may have about this notice. Please write to:

HM Revenue and Customs
Finance - Tax Accounting Policy
9th Floor SE
Alexander House
Victoria Avenue
Southend-on-Sea
Essex
SS99 1AA

Please note this address is not for general enquiries.

For your general enquiries please telephone the VAT, Excise and Customs Helpline on Telephone: 0300 200 3700.

If you have a complaint

For further information about complaints procedures go to www.hmrc.gov.uk and under ‘quick links’ select ‘Complaints’.