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HMRC internal manual


Import entry procedures: release of goods where VAT is to be paid or deferred and the amount of VAT can not be established

Registered taxable persons

Importers who are registered for VAT may either:

  • deposit the potential VAT along with any other charges potentially due (for miscellaneous cash deposits, input tax evidence will not be issued until the deposit is adjusted)


  • pay VAT outright on a value inclusive of the potential duty and/or other charges. In this case, evidence for input tax deduction will be issued and no subsequent adjustment will be made for VAT purposes even if the amount of VAT paid turns out to be incorrect.

Directions for completing import declarations to exercise this option are given in the Tariff, Volume 3 Part 3 Section 3.1 Box 47(e).

Non-registered persons

Importers who are not registered for VAT must in all cases include the potential VAT in their deposit.

Further information on what to do when the precise amount of duty and other charges are not known is given in Notice 702, paragraph 2.11.