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HMRC internal manual

Diplomatic Privileges Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Motor vehicles: disposals

Vehicles imported or purchased within the UK under diplomatic privilege may only be disposed of in the UK with the prior permission of the FCO.

Once permission has been granted a car can be sold to an entitled person without payment of any VAT and/or duty charges, or to a non-entitled person on payment of the VAT and/or duty charges. The charges are calculated on the value of the vehicle at the time of sale at the rates in force. However, if a lower rate was in force at the time the relief was granted then the amount payable is calculated at the lower rate.

Authorisation for the disposal and assessment of charges will be completed using Form TX 22 (available from FCO) and charges paid as calculated by the Personal Transport Unit (PTU).

On receipt of a Form TX22 from a diplomat or mission the PTU should:

  • Check that the form has been completed correctly, stamped by the DVLA. If the Form TX22 has not been stamped it should be returned to the diplomat or mission to obtain the correct stamps.
  • Assess the customs charges to be paid on the vehicle.
  • Return the form to the diplomat or mission via the FCO.

In addition:

Where more than three months have elapsed a new Form TX22 needs to be completed by the diplomat or mission.

Payment should be sent to: Personal Transport Unit, HM Revenue & Customs, Building 22, Priory Court, St Johns Road, Dover, Kent, CT17 9SH.

A receipt should be issued to the mission or diplomat on collection of the VAT and /or duty charges.

For vehicles manufactured in the UK, the VAT and/or duty charges should be paid to the FCO.

For vehicles manufactured outside the UK, the VAT and/or duty charges should be paid to HMRC.

Stolen or written off vehicles

No VAT and/or duty charges should be collected on diplomatic vehicles which are stolen. Where a vehicle is subsequently recovered and sold to a non-entitled person VAT and/or duty charges should be calculated and collected. In these cases the charges are calculated on the value of the vehicle in its current condition.

Where vehicles are written off, the charges are calculated in the same way. The insurer should obtain three valuations of the vehicle and forward them to the Vehicle Appraisal Unit who will assess the charges on the highest valuation. Charges can be paid either by the vehicle owner or the insurer.