Import goods using transitional simplified procedures in a no-deal Brexit

Make it easier to import goods from the EU in a no-deal Brexit by delaying your declaration and paying import duties and VAT.

This guidance was withdrawn on

Transitional simplified procedures are currently suspended. You will not need to use this between February and December 2020. If you applied, keep your paperwork safe. Find out more information about delaying declarations.

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This guidance does not apply to moving goods between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

In a no-deal Brexit, UK businesses that import goods will need to apply the same procedures to EU trade that apply when trading with the rest of the world.

HMRC has introduced transitional simplified procedures to help businesses import goods from the EU.

When you import goods from the rest of the world, they’re not released from customs control until you’ve declared them and paid import duties and VAT.

Using transitional simplified procedures to import goods from the EU will delay:

  • submitting your full declaration by letting you submit less information at the time the goods enter the UK
  • paying import duties and VAT

If you already trade outside of the EU

If you already trade outside the EU and have someone to deal with customs for you (like a customs agent) or use software to submit import declarations, you can continue to do this to import from the EU.

You can also register for transitional simplified procedures, but you should check with your software provider about any additional customs rules you’ll need to follow.

Register to use transitional simplified procedures

Importing controlled goods

Controlled goods are goods that must have a license to import, or excise goods like alcohol or tobacco, which have additional duties on them.

You should:

  1. Check if your goods are on the list of controlled goods for transitional simplified procedures.
  2. Find out how to import controlled goods from the EU using transitional simplified procedures.

Importing standard goods

If you’re not importing controlled goods, find out how to import standard goods using transitional simplified procedures.

If you’re importing controlled goods as well as standard goods, you can just follow the process for importing controlled goods.

Importing EU goods under the Common Transit Convention

You can use transitional simplified procedures if you’re importing EU goods under the Common Transit Convention.

The process for this will depend on whether they’re:

If HMRC withdraws these procedures

HMRC will review transitional simplified procedures after Brexit. If we decide to withdraw them, we’ll let you know 12 months before. This will give you time to prepare your business to follow the full process for importing goods.

If this happens, you can:

Updates to this page

Published 4 February 2018
Last updated 7 October 2019 + show all updates
  1. Information has been added about using transitional simplified procedures when you import EU goods under the Common Transit Convention.

  2. First published.

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