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HMRC internal manual


HM Revenue & Customs
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Import entry procedures: agents importing horses for auction

There are special arrangements applicable to registered taxable persons who import horses on behalf of their owners for auction at bloodstock sales. These arrangements, known as the ‘docket system’, apply to horses imported for sale by auction at Tattersalls, Botterills (Ascot) and Doncaster bloodstock sales. The docket system may be used by the VAT registered auctioneer for horses that are owned wholly or in any part by either:

  • a non-taxable person, or
  • a taxable person acting in a private capacity.

Excluded from the ‘docket system’ are horses owned by UK VAT registered traders who are importing and selling the horses by way of business and are entitled to recover, in full, as input tax the VAT charged at importation.

Full details of the procedure are given in the table at IMPS08100; for information about the value for VAT of these horses, use IMPS04700.

As an alternative to the ‘docket system’, horses for sale by auction may be temporarily imported from outside the EC with a view to sale at auction under temporary importation relief arrangements use Notice 200 and R2-1 section 36-13. In such cases, entry is to be made to customs procedure code CPC 53 00 41 and security for VAT must be given by guarantee or cash deposit.