Delaying declarations for EU goods brought into Great Britain

Check if you can enter goods in your own records and give HMRC the information up to 175 days later.

You can hire someone to deal with customs and to transport your goods from overseas.

If your business is not established in the UK, you must get someone established in the UK to:

  • deal with customs for you - they will be acting as an indirect representative

  • make the declaration in their records and make the supplementary declaration

Import declarations

You must follow the normal rules for making an import declaration if either:

If your goods are not controlled

If you import goods into free circulation in Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) from EU free circulation between 1 January and 31 December 2021 and your goods are not controlled, you can:

You must also:

  1. Account for the import VAT on your VAT Return (if you’re not VAT registered you must pay at the time you make the supplementary declaration).

  2. Get authorisation to use simplified declarations before you can make a supplementary declaration (or use someone dealing with customs for you who has an authorisation).

  3. Submit monthly Intrastat supplementary declarations for arrivals from the EU if you’re required to.

If you get someone else to deal with your customs declaration

They’ll need make all the necessary declarations on your behalf to move your goods. They’ll:

  • enter the goods in their records – you’ll need to provide the details to your representative for them to record
  • make the supplementary declaration

If you’re already authorised to use simplified declarations (or you use someone to deal with customs for you who has an authorisation) at the time the entry was made in the records, you can still delay your supplementary declaration.

Moving goods from the EU into free circulation

You must be moving goods from the EU into free circulation (declared and customs duties paid). This can be one of the following:

  • directly from import
  • from a customs special procedure in Great Britain (for example customs warehousing)
  • from a temporary storage facility in Great Britain
  • using transit – if the movement of the goods started in the EU and ended in Great Britain

Transitional simplified procedures which were announced for 31 January 2020 have been withdrawn. You will not be able to use them to import your goods from the EU.

Safety and security declarations

From 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2021 you can import controlled and non-controlled goods from the EU without making an entry summary declaration, this is also known as the safety and security declaration.

Published 10 July 2020
Last updated 16 March 2021 + show all updates
  1. The final date that you can use the deferred declaration scheme, including submitting supplementary declarations up to 175 days after the goods have been imported, has been changed from 30 June 2021 to 31 December 2021. The date when you will need to submit safety and security declarations for imports into Great Britain from some countries has also changed, from 1 July 2021 to 1 January 2022.

  2. First published.