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HMRC internal manual

Holding and Movements - Duty Stamps

Scheme Description: Who can affix duty stamps?

The circumstances under which acquirers of duty stamps may pass stamps/label mark designon to other parties for affixing to product are as follows:

Type A – “freestanding” stamp

A person who is registered to obtain Type A stamps is also authorised to affix them tobottles. It is also permissible for a registered person to pass the stamps to anotherparty for affixing on the registered person’s behalf provided that the registeredperson who acquired the stamps at the time of ordering provided the name and address ofthe person that the stamps will be passed to for affixing. There is no requirement for theperson physically affixing the stamps to be registered although they will be regarded asauthorised to receive stamps. Loose freestanding stamps cannot be passed to anyone who isnot authorised to receive them.

There may be occasions where, having ordered the goods, acquired the stamps, and passedthem on to his supplier for affixing, the person who acquired the stamps cancels his orderleaving the supplier with stamps, possibly affixed to bottles. Where this happens, thesupplier, who may or may not already be registered in his own right for duty stampspurposes, will be required to note his records that he has the stamps or stamped goods.The supplier can then sell on the stamped goods in duty suspension or remove them to homeuse. Any loose stamps he holds must be returned to the “customer” who passedthem to him, who will then either be able to use the stamps for a new transaction, or, ifhe no longer has a need for the stamps, return them directly to the contractor. If, forany reason, the stamps cannot be returned to the customer, they should be returneddirectly to the contractor.

Type B – Label stamp

People who acquire the label stamp design are able to use the design to produce labelsto affix to goods. They are also able to pass the label design on to another party forincorporating into a label on their behalf. This work may also be subcontracted further.Their registration for the purposes of acquiring the duty stamp label design alsoauthorises them to affix labels incorporating duty stamps onto bottles. Again, they mayemploy someone to do this on their behalf. As with the freestanding stamp, the design ofthe label stamp cannot be passed on to anyone who is not authorised to receive it.

There is a requirement for the registered person to advise HMRC at the time ofregistration of the details of who they employ to incorporate the stamp into the label ontheir behalf (i.e. their label printers), of which there may be more than one.