Notice 236: Returned Goods Relief (RGR)

HMRC Reference:Notice 236 (April 2014) View Change History
 

Contents

Returned Goods Relief (RGR): Customs duty and Import VAT relief on goods returning to the UK/EU

Foreword

1. About the notice, the law and your rights

1.1 What is this notice about?

1.2 What law covers this notice?

2. Relief conditions

2.1 What are the conditions for relief from customs duty?

2.2 Types of goods eligible to claim RGR

2.3 What is triangulation or export and re-import via different EU Member States

2.4 What are the conditions for relief from VAT?

2.5 Will HM Revenue & Customs waive the time limit for customs duty and or VAT RGR in certain cases?

2.6 Can I claim RGR on goods VAT zero-rated for onward supply to another Member State?

2.7 What are the conditions for relief from CAP charges?

2.8 Can I claim RGR on goods returned from another Member State?

2.9 Can I claim RGR on parts, or the residue, of goods previously exported?

2.10 Are there any post import restrictions on goods qualifying for RGR?

3. Exporting goods for return under RGR

3.1 What are the benefits of the ATA carnet?

3.2 How does the duplicate list procedure work?

3.3 How do I export my goods under the duplicate list procedure?

3.4 RGR, Customs duty and goods previously in Inward Processing

3.5 RGR and End Use

4. Re-importing goods under RGR

4.1 How do I claim RGR on re-importation?

4.2 What is acceptable evidence of export?

4.3 How do I re-import my goods under the duplicate list procedure?

4.4 Can I claim RGR on goods re-imported by post?

4.5 What about goods returned in baggage?

4.6 Can I claim RGR after the goods have been re-imported and customs charges paid?

5. Checklist: entitlement to relief from customs duty

6. Checklist: entitlement to relief from VAT

7. Checklist: entitlement to relief from CAP charges

7.1 Important points to note about claiming relief from CAP charges

7.2 Conditions if a refund was claimed at export

7.3 Conditions if a levy was charged at export

7.4 Paying agency statement

7.5 Goods returned due to circumstances beyond the control of the exporter

8. NOVA (Notification of Vehicle Arrivals)

9. Glossary

What if I disagree with any of your decisions?

Your rights and obligations

Do you have any comments or suggestions?

Putting things right

How we use your information

 

Returned Goods Relief (RGR): Customs duty and Import VAT relief on goods returning to the UK/EU

Foreword

This notice replaces Notice 236 December 2013

1. About the notice, the law and your rights

1.1 What is this notice about?

This notice tells you about Returned Goods Relief (RGR), and explains how you can re-import goods to the European Union (EU) in the same state they were in on previous export from:

  • the European Union (EU), and obtain total or partial relief from customs duty
  • the EU, and obtain total or partial relief from VAT or CAP charges.

The conditions for relief are different for each type of duty or tax, and if you claim relief from more than one, you must meet the conditions for each.

The glossary at section 9 explains the meaning of some of the words, phrases and abbreviations used.

Bear in mind that a claim to RGR does not override any import prohibition, restriction or licensing requirements which may be in force for the goods you intend to re-import. You can find full information about the goods concerned in the Revenue and Customs Tariff, volume 1, part 3 or from the Helpline on 0300 200 3700.

This notice concentrates on the arrangements for re-importing commercial goods. Please read Notice 3 Bringing your belongings and private motor vehicle to the UK from outside the EC if you want information on the re-importation of personal belongings, including private motor vehicles.

If you are temporarily exporting goods for process or repair and return, please read Notice 235 Outward processing relief (OPR). You cannot claim RGR on such goods when re-imported in the processed or repaired state. If no process or repair takes place, the goods in an unaltered state may be returned using RGR.

1.2 What law covers this notice?

The law on which this notice is based is:

  • For customs duty and CAP charges at import: Council Regulation 2913/92, articles 185-187 implemented by Commission Regulation 2454/93, articles 844-856. Decision 1/96 of the EC-Turkey Customs Co-operation Committee.
  • For CAP export refunds: Commission Regulation 800/1999.
  • For CAP import and export licences and advance fixing certificates for agricultural products: Commission Regulation (EEC) 1291/2000.
  • For repayment of CAP export levy on returned goods: Commission Regulation 2454/93, article 903
  • For VAT: The Value Added Tax Regulations 1995, Regulation 121D.

This notice explains our view of the law, and nothing in it overrides the law. This notice and others mentioned are available on the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) website at www.hmrc.gov.uk.

2. Relief conditions

2.1 What are the conditions for relief from customs duty?

The goods must have been in free circulation with all duties and taxes paid when they were exported from the EU.

If the goods or any components were previously imported into the EU any customs duty suspended or relieved at the time of import must have been paid prior to export.

Also, any refunds obtained on export from the EU must be repaid.

The goods must be re-imported in an unaltered state, apart from any work that may have been required to maintain the goods in working order. Any work done must not have upgraded the goods to a higher specification or increased their value.

To remain eligible for RGR the goods must not have been exported for the purpose of repair or process. However, if they are being returned unaltered relief may be available.

The goods must be re-imported within 3 years of the date of the original export.

Longer periods will be considered by us on application to:

NIRU
Abbey House
Head Street
Enniskillen
COUNTY FERMANAGH
BT74 7JL

Phone: 03000 572100
Fax: 03000 518701
Email: niru@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

The full eligibility requirements for waiver of the 3 year time limit are set out in paragraph 2.5.

The goods are also eligible for duty relief if they only represent a proportion of the goods originally exported.

2.2 Types of goods eligible to claim RGR

Returned personal effects and vehicles

Returned personal effects, sports equipment or vehicles previously exported from the EU. Relief is available for everyone who brings back personal effects, sports equipment or a vehicle back into the EU. See paragraph 4.1 for further details.

Returned Professional and Commercial equipment

Anyone who brings goods back into the EU that have been hired, leased or loaned outside the EU.

Unprocessed goods originally exported under the Outward Processing procedure

Any goods which were exported under the Outward Processing procedure and which remain unprocessed on re-import and which remain in the same state as they were when originally exported.

Goods previously entered to the Inward Processing (IP) procedure in the EU

You can claim RGR on the re-importation of goods originating outside the EU and are non free circulation goods, which were previously entered to the Inward Processing procedure in the EU. See paragraph 3.4 for further details.

Goods previously entered to the End Use procedure in the EU

You can claim RGR on the re-importation of goods previously entered to free circulation in the EU, with relief from duty and or VAT, under the End Use procedure. See paragraph 3.5 for further details.

Goods temporarily exported using the ATA or CPD carnet procedure

You can claim RGR on the re-importation of goods temporarily exported from the EU using an ATA or CPD carnet. See paragraph 3.1 for details.

Re-imported pallets and containers

Please follow and copy the statement in Volume 3 Appendix C9 in the UK Tariff under PAL 05.

However, packaging (for example shrink wrap or any packaging not suitable for re-use, cannot be claimed under RGR relief.

Export pallets and containers

Please follow and copy the statement in Volume 3 Appendix C9 in the UK Tariff under PAL 12.

However, packaging (for example shrink wrap or any packaging not suitable for re-use, cannot be claimed under RGR relief.

2.3 What is triangulation or export and re-import via different EU Member States

RGR is not limited to goods moving solely between the UK and countries outside the EU. You can also claim customs duty and CAP RGR (and VAT RGR) on 'triangulation' goods which were exported from one member state and re-imported to another.

Triangulation is the exportation of goods from one European Union (EU) member state to a third country, followed by their re-importation into another EU member state country - for example, France to America and then back to the UK. If you re-import such goods you can claim customs duty and CAP RGR as long as you meet the conditions in the checklists at sections 5 and 7 as appropriate, and you present the following with your import declaration:

  • Information Sheet INF3 (and for IP goods, Information Sheet INF1 too).
  • An export declaration with accompanying commercial documentation for identification and eligibility information confirming that the goods were in free circulation when originally exported from the EU and at the time satisfied the conditions for acceptance as returned goods.
  • If you are claiming VAT RGR then the export declaration must show that the exporter from the other MS is the same as the person re-importing to the UK.

The UK versions of the INF3 and INF1 are Customs Forms C&E1158 and C&E1143 respectively.

Box 10 of the INF3 gives information about the duty status of the goods at the time of export from the EU (that is whether they are goods in free circulation or processed goods of an IP operation or end use goods). You must make the appropriate deletions in box 10 before we authenticate. For example, if the goods were in free circulation at export, item 10d applies, and you should delete 10b and 10c.

You should then send the authenticated forms to the person importing the goods in the other country of the EU.

2.4 What are the conditions for relief from VAT?

To be eligible for VAT RGR you must:

1. Be shown on the original export declaration as exporter and the re-import declarations as the importer.

2. The goods must be re-imported in an unaltered state, apart from any work that may have been required to maintain the goods in working order.

Any work done must not have upgraded the goods to a higher specification or increased their value.

To remain eligible for RGR the goods must not have been exported for the purpose of repair or process. However, if they are being returned unaltered, relief may be available.

3. The goods must be re-imported within 3 years of the original export

Longer periods will be considered by us on application to NIRU on the full eligibility requirements for waiver of the 3 year time limit.

Additionally:

  • Any VAT refunds obtained on export from the EU must be repaid
  • The rules on end use apply too (see paragraph 3.5 for details on End Use and RGR).
  • Goods are also eligible for VAT RGR where they only represent a proportion of the goods exported.
  • Any VAT or equivalent turnover tax had been paid on them in the EU and not refunded when they were taken outside the EU.

VAT registered persons may choose to pay the VAT

If you are a VAT registered person, RGR saves you having to pay and reclaim VAT several times on for example, goods taken outside the EU on approval and brought back unsold, or tools and equipment which are returned to the EU after being hired, loaned or leased for use in a place outside the EU.

However, if you are registered for VAT, you can still choose as an alternative to claiming VAT RGR, to pay or defer the VAT due on re-importation and subject to the normal rules, deduct it as input tax on your next VAT return. We will issue the usual VAT certificate or VAT copy of the declaration in such cases. Most goods are liable to VAT at the rate of 20%, but certain works of art, antiques and collectors’ items are entitled to an effective VAT rate of 5%. For full details and conditions, see our Notice 702 VAT Imports.

For VAT purposes, we treat goods returned to the UK from the Special Territories and countries which have customs unions with the EU as imported goods. That is because these areas are outside the VAT fiscal territory of the Community. If you want to claim VAT RGR on such goods, you must declare them on Form C88 (also known as a Single Administrative Document (SAD)) and use CPC 49 23 F01.

2.5 Will HM Revenue & Customs waive the time limit for customs duty and or VAT RGR in certain cases?

Yes, we may allow a waiver depending on circumstances. You can still claim customs duty and or VAT RGR on re-imported goods which were exported more than three years ago as long as:

  • you meet all other RGR conditions in the checklists at sections 5 and 6 as appropriate
  • you must inform us about the special circumstances that make it necessary to exceed the time limit at re-importation.

Special circumstances in which we will waive the time limit include when:

  • specialised goods return from long-term hire or loan agreements
  • building equipment or machinery returns after use in capital projects overseas
  • exhibition goods return after long-term display or storage overseas
  • collectors’ or heritage items originally manufactured in the EU return from overseas after re-acquisition by a UK dealer or investor, for example collectable items of furniture or ceramics
  • professional and personal effects returned with home coming expatriates.

Requests for waiver of the time limit must be forwarded to NIRU for consideration.

Email: niru@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

2.6 Can I claim RGR on goods VAT zero-rated for onward supply to another Member State?

Yes. VAT registered importers (a UK VAT registered importer or a UK VAT registered agent appointed to act as importer on behalf of a trader who is not based in the UK and not VAT registered in the UK) may also claim customs duty relief, when the goods are simultaneously released for free circulation without payment of VAT for zero rated onward supply to another Member State. To claim relief you must be making a zero rated supply of the imported goods, not merely despatching them to a taxable person (who will account for tax on their acquisition) in another EU country. See section 5 which explains what is entitled to relief from Customs duty. You can find further information about onward supply relief in VAT Notice 702/7 Import VAT relief for goods supplied onwards to another country in the EU. Use CPC 61 23 F01 on your declaration and complete form C1314 to claim RGR in these circumstances. You can also apply for a waiver of the three year time limit if you comply with the special circumstances (paragraph 2.5) you must apply to NIRU for permission to use the waiver.

2.7 What are the conditions for relief from CAP charges?

We outline the conditions for CAP RGR and the procedures to follow in the checklist at section 7.

2.8 Can I claim RGR on goods returned from another Member State?

You cannot claim customs duty and CAP RGR for movements of goods solely between Member States. If you receive Community goods from another MS via an EFTA country under the Community/common transit (CT) procedures you do not need to claim RGR. The CT procedures may also apply if you receive Community goods from another MS via non Community territory (other than EFTA) under a single transport document. See the Transit Manual and our notice 750 Community/common transit for details of the CT arrangements.

The Single Market concept also means that VAT RGR does not apply to goods returned from elsewhere in the fiscal territory of the Community. Goods sent to or from your trading partner in another MS are neither imports nor exports for fiscal purposes. If you are a taxable person, the VAT rules on acquisition apply to goods returned to you from within the Community for the purposes of your business. If you are a non taxable person, you need pay no further VAT on goods returned to you from another MS as long as you had acquired the goods VAT paid.

2.9 Can I claim RGR on parts, or the residue, of goods previously exported?

Yes, provided the parts or residue can be clearly identified as belonging to the goods previously exported.

2.10 Are there any post import restrictions on goods qualifying for RGR?

No. You are free to do what you like with the goods once they qualify for RGR, including selling them to others or processing or repairing and re-exporting them.

3. Exporting goods for return under RGR

You do not need to be pre-authorised by HMRC to use RGR.

However, if you use one or more of the following options for export you should have sufficient evidence to support your claim for RGR on re-importation.

  • A declaration (form C88 also known as a Single Administrative Document (SAD)) using the normal export CPC 10 00 001. The number and date of this export declaration should be entered into box 40 of the re-import declaration using document identifier code: GEN45 when you claim RGR at re-import.
  • A declaration using the RGR export CPC 23 00 000. The number and date of this export declaration should be entered in box 40 of the re-import declaration using document identifier code: GEN45 when you claim RGR are re-import.
  • Complete an INF1 and have it endorsed at export when goods currently under the Inward Processing (IP) procedure are intended to be re-imported in another EU MS and claim RGR (Triangulation). In addition to the INF1 which is to notify the other MS of the amount and duty and VAT suspended by the IP procedure complete an INF3 too which is to notify the other MS of all duty, CAP charges and VAT due on the goods.
  • The duplicate list of goods exported from the EU endorsed by The Customs authority on export and a form C&E 1246 completed and endorsed by HMRC.

Please note that it is not possible to export excise goods under the ATA carnet or duplicate list procedures. And if removed to another Member State such goods must be accompanied by a normal declaration.

It is advisable to retain all evidence of export when it is intended to claim RGR on re-import of the goods to the EU.

We will consider alternative evidence which clearly identifies the goods, relates to their export and confirms the export of those goods and their duty status at export (that is goods in free circulation products of an IP operation or end use goods.

We may accept one or more of the following documents as evidence:

  • A document that proves the goods were previously in the EU.
  • A copy of the export invoice.
  • A copy of the export airway bill or bill of lading.
  • A commercial certificate of shipment prepared at the time of export.
  • A certificate of posting relating to the export of the goods.
  • A copy of the import invoice if it clearly shows that the goods are being returned.
  • A suitable statement from the manufacturer or exporter if other than yourself.
  • A preferential origin form EUR1 in certain cases (contact our Helpline 0300 200 3700 for further details).
  • In the case of collectable items, catalogue information or qualified opinion from collectors' or Auction houses.
  • Stock record book.

3.1 What are the benefits of the ATA carnet?

The ATA carnet simplifies customs clearance if you temporarily export your goods from the EU and then re-import them to the EU country from which they originated. The carnet replaces the usual customs re-import and export documentation both in the EU and the other countries who are signatories to the ATA Carnet or Istanbul Convention. Goods should be intended for return to the country where the carnet was issued, and cannot be processed or repaired other than routine maintenance necessary to keep them in their original condition.

Only countries which are party to the Customs Convention on the ATA carnet and the Istanbul Convention, accept the ATA carnet. You can purchase ATA carnets from the Chambers of Commerce & Industry.

We provide full details about the ATA carnet arrangements in Notice 104 ATA and CPD carnets.

3.2 How does the duplicate list procedure work?

Please note the duplicate list procedure is mainly used at Heathrow Airport, however other airports and port are also able to accommodate the duplicate list procedure.

You can only use it to help with the temporary export from, and the subsequent return to, the UK of the following, limited range of free circulation goods travelling with you as accompanied baggage:

  • professional effects (such as portable computers, broadcasting equipment, tools, theatrical properties, musical instruments)
  • works of art and other items exported solely for exhibition, display or demonstration purposes
  • trade samples
  • trophies belonging to a recognised sporting association or organising body permanently established in the UK.

The goods must not be processed or repaired (other than routine maintenance) whilst in a third country. You will still need to complete the customs documentation and give any financial security normally required by the country to which you take your goods.

You cannot use the duplicate list procedure for goods subject to Department of Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) or other Government Department licensing, as licensed goods normally require the use of form C88 (SAD).

3.3 How do I export my goods under the duplicate list procedure?

Please note the duplicate list procedure is mainly used at Heathrow Airport, however other airports and ports are also able to accommodate the duplicate list procedure.

Before leaving the UK you must:

  • prepare 2 copies of a list, on company-headed notepaper if possible, which gives:
    - the description
    - the quantities
    - where applicable the serial numbers
    of all the goods to be temporarily exported to a third country
  • at the end of each copy state the type of goods (for example samples) and the reason for their temporary exportation
  • fill in the exporter’s name, address and VAT number (if any) on Form C&E1246
  • complete Part A of the form
  • make prior arrangements with us at the Airport or port in order to avoid delays at the time of departure
  • on the day of departure, present to us at the Customs Enquiry Point at the Airport or port the goods
    - both copies of the list
    - Form C&E1246.

If we are satisfied that the goods are in free circulation and the documents are in order, we will stamp the lists and Form C&E1246 and return one copy of the list and the Form. You must keep both of these with the goods.

3.4 RGR, Customs duty and goods previously in Inward Processing

In addition you must comply with the following requirements if you claim customs duty RGR on re-imported goods that were previously held under Inward Processing (IP).

You can claim RGR on the re-importation of Third country goods originating outside the EU and are non free circulation goods which were previously relieved from customs duty under IP arrangements as long as you:

  • pay the amount of duty originally relieved under IP
  • meet all other relevant RGR customs duty conditions in the checklist in section 5
  • declare the goods to Customs Procedure Code (CPC) 61 23 F01.

RGR may also apply to goods incorporating Third country or non free circulation components previously in IP as long as you comply with the conditions listed above.

Where goods have been imported more than once under IP, the sum you must pay for RGR purposes is the amount of duty which would have been due had the goods been diverted to free circulation after completion of the last IP transaction.

You must include details of the amount previously relieved under IP on form C1314 which is to accompany the import declaration form C88 (SAD).

You can find further information on IP in Notices 221 Inward Processing Relief.

3.5 RGR and End Use

End Use goods you can claim RGR on re-imported goods which were previously imported under End Use Relief, as long as the goods are being re-imported for the same End Use purpose.

If goods were imported under End Use and the procedure has not been done then subsequently exported, they can use RGR. Export the non completed End Use goods under CPC 10 40 000, enter to End Use again under the appropriate End Use CPC. Import charges should be relieved by production of NES documentation.

If goods which previously have been imported under End Use and had been put to their End Use and subsequently exported they can be re-imported to RGR subject to the usual conditions.

If the amount of duty paid on the previous importation is one that the full amount due on re-import we require no further payment BUT we cannot give any refunds.

You can find further information about End Use in Notice 770 Imported goods: End Use Relief.

4. Re-importing goods under RGR

4.1 How do I claim RGR on re-importation?

You must complete a full customs import declaration Form C88 (SAD) unless you:

  • used an ATA or CPD carnet to export your goods from the EU Notice 104 has more details explaining the process
  • the duplicate list procedure for exporting the goods
  • are re-importing accompanied or unaccompanied personal effects reasonably required for a journey or goods for sports purposes re-imported by a traveller normally resident in the EU by using the declaration procedure 'any other act' or going through the green channel if you have nothing to declare
  • where goods need to be cleared from a port or airport inventory system on arrival you, agent, forwarder or ferry operator should complete a Customs clearance request form C21 to clear the inventory records. On the C21 quote Customs Procedure Code (CPC) 00 00 040 in box 44 enter Additional Information code GEN45 followed by the statement 'Returned goods' which will identify that the goods are eligible for returned goods relief and that no further customs documentation is required for release
  • if the goods are more than €10,000 in value or you are importing pets, firearms, ammunition or other licensable, prohibited or restricted goods see notice 3 you must complete a full C88 (SAD) declaration as there will be further documentation accompanying the goods which needs checking
  • are re-importing goods below a certain value by post.

When you fill in box 37 of the customs declaration you must use the appropriate RGR CPC, we provide full details of what is required under the RGR CPCs and guidance on how to complete import declarations in the Tariff, volume 3.

Depending on the CPC, in some cases you will also need to complete claim form C1314 to help establish entitlement to RGR, and in others you will be bound by a specific declaration built into the relevant CPC.

In addition, we cannot normally allow RGR unless at the time of import, you produce acceptable evidence of previous export of the goods from the EU or UK, as appropriate, and their duty status at export. By 'duty status' we mean whether the goods are in free circulation, products of an Inward Processing relief (IP) operation, or end use goods.

It is important to establish duty status because, in the case of returning goods or any of their components which were previously imported and declared to IP or end use, you may have to pay some duty. You must declare ex-IP for example to CPC 61 23 F01 and end use goods for example to CPC 40 00 024 see paragraphs 3.4 and 3.5 for further explanation.

You must still prove previous export of the goods from the EU, but if you have tried unsuccessfully to get details of their duty status at export and the amount of any duty to be paid now, we may be able to make enquiries to establish those details for you. Declare the goods to CPC 61 23 F01 along with Form C1314 and supporting evidence of previous export, and tell our import officer why you cannot prove duty status. For example, because the previous exporter has gone out of business and you cannot get the information from them.

We will release your goods if we are satisfied that all the conditions for relief are met. If there are any doubts or unresolved aspects concerning the claim, we will still release the goods if you give us financial security (for example a cash deposit or banker’s guarantee) to cover the duty and or tax at stake, either pending production of further evidence from you, or while we undertake any enquiries about duty status for you.

Important: please bear in mind that you are liable to fines if you make false statements to obtain, or try to obtain, relief to which you are not legally entitled. The goods involved are also liable to forfeiture.

4.2 What is acceptable evidence of export?

Customs certified copy 3 (or an authenticated photocopy) of the export SAD (Form C88), or the officially authenticated Information Sheet INF3 (supported by Information Sheet INF1 if appropriate) are the usual forms of evidence to prove that the goods, at the time of previous export from the EU, satisfied the conditions for acceptance as returned goods. If the goods were exported from the UK under the National Export System (NES), quoting the NES declaration reference counts as the equivalent of producing a hard copy of the export SAD.

We will consider alternative evidence which clearly relates to the goods being imported, and confirms the previous export of those goods and their duty status at export (that is goods in free circulation, products of an IP operation or end-use goods). Provided therefore the goods are readily identifiable and duty status is apparent from the details thereon, we may accept one or more of the following documents as evidence:

  • a document that proves the goods were previously in the EU
  • a copy of the export invoice
  • a copy of the export airway bill or bill of lading
  • a commercial certificate of shipment prepared at the time of export
  • a certificate of posting relating to the export of the goods
  • a copy of the import invoice if it clearly shows that the goods are being returned
  • a suitable statement from the manufacturer or exporter if other than yourself
  • a preferential origin Form EUR1 in certain cases
  • in the case of collectable items, catalogue information or qualified opinion from a recognised expert in the field such as National Institutes and specialist auction houses
  • record from the trader's stock record book.

See paragraph 4.1 if you can produce evidence of previous export, but cannot establish the duty status of the goods at that time.

If you are regularly importing returned goods and presentation of the evidence at the time of import is difficult for you, we may be able to offer alternative arrangements.

4.3 How do I re-import my goods under the duplicate list procedure?

If you used the duplicate list procedure at export (paragraph 3.3), then on your return to the UK you must:

  • mark on the copy of the list any goods that have been left abroad and the country in which they were left
  • complete Part B of Form C&E1246 by signing declaration 1 and/or declaration 2
  • present:
    - the goods
    - the list
    - Form C&E1246.

To a Border Force officer in the red channel (or, if we are not in attendance at the airport, use the red point phone to speak to an officer and follow their instructions). Please note that the duplicate lists procedure is mainly used at Heathrow Airport, however other airports and ports are also able to accommodate the duplicate list procedure.

4.4 Can I claim RGR on goods re-imported by post?

Yes. The same conditions for relief apply but the procedures are slightly different.

For goods arriving by post, ask your sender, if possible, to mark the package:

‘RETURNED GOODS’

A customs declaration (CN22 or CN23) must be attached to the package or travel with it. The declaration must include a complete and accurate description of the goods, their quantity and value. If you are registered for VAT, make sure your VAT number is quoted on the declaration.

Depending on the value of the goods, we may send you a Form C88 (SAD) and or simplified forms to complete and return. If you previously exported the goods, and have a certificate of posting or other export evidence (see paragraph 4.2), send that with the completed forms too. If satisfied the goods qualify for relief, we will then release them for delivery free of duty and VAT if appropriate.

If the package is not clearly marked it may not be delivered until you have paid the duty and VAT. You should pay these charges and then write to HM Revenue & Customs at the postal depot where the goods arrived. Explain what happened and enclose the document showing the charges together with any evidence of previous export. If we are satisfied the goods qualify for relief, we will repay the duty and VAT if appropriate.

Full details about our postal procedures can be found in Notice 143 A guide for international post users.

4.5 What about goods returned in baggage?

You do not need to make a formal customs declaration to claim RGR on your own personal belongings re-imported in accompanied baggage if the conditions for relief are met. However, you must declare any other re-imported goods in your baggage, for example commercial samples, at the red channel/red point when you arrive, and we may ask you to make a formal customs declaration claiming RGR.

4.6 Can I claim RGR after the goods have been re-imported and customs charges paid?

Normally, you should claim relief at the time of re-import however, if you fail to do this, we may accept a belated claim and repay the appropriate charges subject to certain conditions. Notice 199 Imported goods: Customs procedures and Customs debt for further details: the section and paragraphs on repayment and remission under Code Article 236 refer. You will need to support the claim with the documents and evidence required by the relevant RGR CPC (paragraph 4.1) as if the goods had been declared to RGR at the time of re-import.

5. Checklist: entitlement to relief from customs duty

Important: You must meet all conditions 1 to 5 below before we will allow customs duty RGR.

Conditions to be met


Additional guidance


1. The goods were exported from the European Union (EU)


‘Exports’ for customs duty RGR purposes include:


  • any goods which have been physically sent to a third country
  • goods shipped as stores on vessels or aircraft which leave EU territorial waters or airspace
  • goods supplied to work points and platforms on the Continental Shelf outside territorial waters.

Note:


  • Goods are eligible for RGR if they have been exported to a place outside the EU, and are returned to the UK via another Member State or country having a Customs Union with the EU where they were not declared for free circulation.
  • All other goods which have been dispatched directly to and returned directly from another Member State are not eligible for customs duty RGR (see paragraph 2.8).
  • You must use an ATR Movement Certificate to obtain relief on goods in Chapters 25 to 97 of the Tariff (with the exception of coal and steel products in Chapters 26, 27, 72 and 73) if dispatched directly to and returned directly from Turkey. These goods are covered by the EC-Turkey Customs Union, and customs duty RGR does not apply to their movement within the Union. Notice 812 European Community preferences: Trade with Turkey provides further information about the ATR procedures. You can use the RGR procedures described in this Notice for all other goods dispatched directly to and returned directly from Turkey.
  • With the exception of certain CAP goods (paragraph 7.1), goods which were previously exported from countries before they joined the EU are eligible for RGR on return from a third country on or after the date they joined.
  • Goods manufactured in the EU and then placed in an EU free zone or customs warehouse before being sent to another Member State have not been exported for RGR purposes.

2. The goods were:


  • in free circulation or
  • products of an IP operation or
  • previously imported under end-use relief.

These are goods of wholly EU origin (including component parts), or goods imported into the Union on which all the import formalities have been completed, and all the duty due has been paid and not repaid in whole or part.


Paragraph 2.2 give more information on IP and end-use goods. You may have to pay some customs duty on these goods when re-imported.


3. The goods were not temporarily exported for process or repair, and are returning in the same state as at export from the EU.


(‘Processing’ includes work done on goods, erecting or assembling goods, or fitting them to other goods. It excludes simple use of the goods for example the running of machinery or the display of exhibits, and also the dismantling and return of parts from EU goods – see paragraph 2.9).


Goods temporarily exported for process or repair in a third country are not eligible for RGR on re-importation (unless returned unaltered). You should use the Outward Processing relief arrangements in Notice 235 Outward processing relief for those goods


We will allow RGR on goods which did receive some treatment outside the Union as long as:


(a) the treatment was limited to:


  • maintaining the goods in sound condition, for example routine servicing or lubrication of machines or
  • handling which only altered the goods’ appearance, for example affixing of operating instructions in foreign languages or
  • carrying out unforeseen repairs or restoration work on goods which were found to be defective or unsuitable for their intended use, or suffered damage, provided the work (including incorporation of any spare parts):
    - was solely to allow them to be used as intended
    - did not increase their value at the time of export from the Union (N.B. if value did increase, the OPR charging rules under '(b)' will apply) or

(b) the goods were exported without the intention of return to the EU, but were found to be defective or unsuitable for their intended use only after a process had begun on them, for example cloth discovered to be the wrong quality after starting to be made up into garments.


If that process would have made the goods liable to duty had they been exported under Outward Processing Relief (OPR), the rules in force for charging duty under the OPR arrangements will apply (Notice 235 Outward processing relief).


Any process or repair not covered by (a) or (b) will make the goods ineligible for RGR.


4. The goods are declared for free circulation within 3 years of their last export from the EU.


You may exceed this time limit in special circumstances. Paragraph 2.5 gives more information.


5. Goods exported from the EU which under the CAP procedures:


  • required an export licence
  • were exported under an Advance Fixing Certificate
  • were subject to a claim for any refund, benefited from any other financial advantage
  • were subject to any levy.

Must meet the additional conditions for relief from CAP charges even though they may not be liable to CAP charges at import. If you do not meet the additional conditions, you cannot claim customs duty RGR alone.


  • Whatever their position, you must support CAP goods exported from the EU with a statement from the relevant paying agency in the exporting Member State before we can consider RGR.

The checklist in section 7 sets out the conditions for CAP RGR, and how you can obtain the paying agency statement.


6. Checklist: entitlement to relief from VAT

All of the following conditions must be met:

Conditions to be met


Additional guidance


1. The goods were last exported from the EU by the importer. Namely the person responsible for exporting the goods and who is now re-importing the goods which must be clearly identified on the import and export evidence.


For VAT RGR purposes, 'exports' include when goods are sent to the areas defined in the checklist for customs duty RGR in section 5, and also when sent to the Special Territories and countries having a Customs Union with the EU.


2. The goods meet conditions 2-5 in the checklist for customs duty RGR in section 5.


These conditions apply whether or not the goods are potentially liable to customs duty on import.


For VAT purposes, processing and repair includes any done in the Special Territories and countries having a Customs Union with the EU, as well as outside the EU.


If the goods are products of an IP suspension operation on which VAT was previously suspended, you must pay the amount suspended on re-import.


If OPR charging rules apply to the goods not originally intended to be re-imported (item 3 of section 5), you must pay the relevant VAT on re-import.


The 3 year time limit can be exceeded in the same way as for customs duty. However, you must apply to NIRU for waiver of the time limit see 2.5 for details.


3. In cases other than IP suspension, if the goods were supplied in, acquired in or imported into the EU before their export, VAT was accounted for or paid and neither has been nor will be repaid as a result of their export.


Repaid does not mean deducted as input tax.


Taxable persons who zero-rated goods on export can still claim VAT RGR on re-import of those goods.


Goods obtained by individuals which were zero-rated for VAT under any personal export scheme are not eligible for VAT RGR.


4. The goods were not exported with a view to avoiding or abusing the normal VAT supply rules by using RGR. For example, by selling 'offshore' to another UK company so that the latter can obtain goods relieved of VAT after re-import by the exporter.


The following are examples of legitimate reasons for re-importing goods sold outside the EU where VAT RGR can still properly be claimed. They include where goods are:


  • rejected by the customer based outside the EU or
  • not able to be delivered to the customer based outside the EU or
  • re-purchased by the original EU exporter, or sent back to them for repair or renovation.

7. Checklist: entitlement to relief from CAP charges

7.1 Important points to note about claiming relief from CAP charges

The conditions for CAP RGR are explained in items 7.2 to 7.5, but firstly please note the following important points:

(a) All the conditions under the checklist for customs duty RGR in section 5, plus the conditions in this checklist, apply to goods which under CAP export procedures:

  • required an export licence
  • were exported under an Advance Fixing Certificate
  • were subject to a claim for any refund, or benefited from any other financial advantage and
  • were subject to any levy.

If you do not meet these conditions, you cannot claim either CAP or customs duty RGR on the goods.

(b) You must still support other CAP goods returned to the UK with the statement referred to in item 7.4 of this checklist, but you need only meet the conditions in the checklist for customs duty RGR in section 5 for such goods.

7.2 Conditions if a refund was claimed at export

If any refund was claimed under CAP when the goods were exported, you may claim relief from CAP charges on re-importation of the goods as long as:

  • the conditions of the checklist at section 5 are met, other than the 'export from the EU' rule for goods returning from countries having a Customs Union with the EU and the '3 year' rule which is overridden by the following requirement
  • you declare the goods to free circulation within 12 months of their previous export from the EU (we will extend this time limit if you can justify exceptional circumstances)
  • the goods could not be used for the purposes intended at export due to circumstances beyond the exporter’s control (item 7.5 of this checklist), and
  • the refund claimed at export is repaid to the paying agency in the exporting Member State (in the UK repayment must be made to the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) when requesting the supporting statement at item 7.4 of this checklist).
  • any licence or Advanced Fixing Certificate (AFC) is adjusted to undo the effects of the attribution at the time of export. If the licence or AFC is no longer valid the RPA must have been notified (see 7.4).

These conditions also apply if you are gaining any other financial advantage under CAP by exporting and re-importing the goods.

7.3 Conditions if a levy was charged at export

If any levy was charged when CAP goods were exported, you may claim relief from CAP charges on re-importation of the goods as long as:

  • the conditions of the checklist at section 5 are met, other than the 'export from the EU' rule for goods returning from countries having a Customs Union with the EU and the '3 year' rule which is overridden by the following requirement
  • you declare the goods to free circulation within 12 months of their previous export from the EU (we will extend this time limit if you can justify exceptional circumstances).

If the goods could not be used for the purposes intended at export from the EU due to circumstances beyond the exporter’s control (item 7.5 of this checklist), you may also reclaim any export levy paid from the paying agency of the exporting Member State. In the UK this is the RPA. You should complete Form C1314 and send it to NIRU (see paragraph 2.1 for contact details) office that will certify the form and return it to you. You should then send it to the RPA with a covering letter claiming repayment of the levy charged on the goods at export.

7.4 Paying agency statement

(A) General

CAP goods always require a statement from the paying agency in the exporting Member State for RGR purposes. For goods that were exported from the UK, the RPA give these statements.

If the goods were exported from the UK but are being re-imported into another Member State, the RPA makes the statement on the INF3 form (UK version C&E1158). Similarly, for goods exported from another Member State and being re-imported into the UK, the paying agency in the other Member State gives the statement on their version of the INF3.

(b) Goods exported from and re-imported into the UK

If you need an RPA statement for RGR purposes where goods were both exported from and re-imported into the UK, you should complete Form C1314 and send it for certification to:

RPA
Lancaster House
Hampshire Court
NEWCASTLE-UPON-TYNE
NE4 7YE

You must have a certified Form C1314 for:

  • goods for which an export refund was claimed (you must also send the RPA advice note and a remittance for the amount of the refund due to be repaid)
  • goods subject to an export levy
  • goods not subject to refund or levy at export.

Also, for goods subject to a CAP export licence or Advance Fixing Certificate (AFC), you must send any unexhausted or unexpired licence or AFC to the RPA with your completed Form C1314. You do not have to send back the licence or AFC if the goods have been returned because of circumstances beyond the control of the exporter (item 7.5 of this checklist).

When you have an RPA certified Form C1314 you should attach it to your import declaration to support your claim to RGR under CPC 61 23 F01.

If you want the goods cleared before you have got the RPA statement, you must give us financial security (for example a cash deposit or banker’s guarantee) to cover the import charges due. We will discharge the security once we have the RPA statement (if the statement is qualified, only part may be discharged).

(c) Goods exported from the UK and re-imported into another Member State

If you have exported CAP goods from the UK which are to be re-imported into another Member State, the customs service in that State may ask for an INF3 to support the re-importer’s RGR claim (paragraph 2.3). For this purpose the paying agency statement is given on the INF3. So you should complete the INF3 (UK Form C&E1158) and send it first to the RPA and then to the NIRU office.

If you claimed an export refund, you must send the completed INF3 to the RPA plus their advice note and a remittance to repay the export refund.

If RGR has been claimed in another Member State on triangulation goods which you exported and on which you want to reclaim the standard export levy, you must ask the customs service in the other Member State to certify on a copy of the customs declaration made by the re-importer that the goods:

  • have been allowed RGR
  • were returned because of circumstances beyond the control of the exporter (item 7.5 of this checklist).

When you have the certified copy declaration, send it to the RPA with your claim for repayment of the levy.

(d) Goods exported from another Member State and re-imported into the UK

If you wish to claim RGR on a triangulation movement of CAP goods ending in the UK you will need an INF3 authenticated by both the paying agency and customs service in the Member State of export. If you or your trading partner wants to reclaim any CAP levy paid on the export you will have to ask UK Customs to certify a copy of the import declaration that the goods were:

  • subject to a standard export levy
  • allowed RGR
  • were returned because of circumstances beyond the control of the exporter (item 7.5 of this checklist).

The paying agency in the Member State of export will repay the standard export levy only if they have this certified copy declaration.

7.5 Goods returned due to circumstances beyond the control of the exporter

Goods returned in the following circumstances are regarded as beyond the exporter’s control for CAP RGR purposes:

  • the goods or the transport in which they were carried have been damaged before delivery to the consignee
  • the goods were exported from the EU to be consumed or sold at a trade fair or similar event and were not consumed or sold
  • the goods could not be delivered to the consignee because the consignee was not able to honour the contract under which they were exported
  • because of natural or political events or social disturbances, the goods could not be delivered to the consignee, or they reached the consignee after a binding delivery date in the contract under which they were exported
  • the goods are fruit or vegetables that were exported for sale on consignment in the market of a non-EU country but were not sold
  • the goods could not be entered to home use in the country of destination because of a law in force there or
  • the goods are being returned by the consignee because they are defective or not in accordance with the contract under which they were exported.

No other situation is acceptable for CAP RGR purposes.

8. NOVA (Notification of Vehicle Arrivals)

An online notification service Notification of Vehicle Arrivals (NOVA) was implemented on the Fifteenth April 2013 by HMRC for vehicles either being brought into the UK from outside of the EU and then released to free circulation or where purchased from another EU member state.

Vehicle registration made using a V55/4 with a V55/1 will not be required as the transactions will be secure.

Vehicle imports where registration is applied for only using a V55/4 (for example prototypes which cannot use the secured system to register the vehicle) will need to be notified to NOVA as these transactions will not be secure.

Commodity codes covered by NOVA

All tariff headings commencing with:

8701, 8702, 8703, 8704, 8705, 8706, 8711 Also 8709 (excluding 8709900000 (parts))

Commodity codes that temporarily do not apply to NOVA

Temporarily, the NOVA system can only cater for land vehicles covered by the commodity codes listed above. While these cover the vast majority of the land vehicles brought into the UK from outside the EU, HMRC is aware that other commodity codes are used to classify some specialist vehicles such as cranes, fork lift trucks, certain types of agricultural vehicles and plant, mobility scooters and classic cars. The Tariff headings are listed below:

8426, 8427, 8429, 8430, 8432, 8433, 8436, 8710, 8713, 9705

Where you have a land vehicle imported from outside of the EU that is covered by one of the tariff headings listed above, then for a short period of time and until further notice you will not be required to make a NOVA notification (either online or by paper) before you apply to register and licence the vehicle. The DVLA is aware of this issue and will not reject such applications where a NOVA notification has not been submitted before the application to register.

Once the NOVA system has been updated to cater for outstanding commodity codes information will be issued which will give notice of the intended changes and when all commodity codes will be covered by NOVA.

This does not affect vehicles brought into the UK from other EU countries. Vehicles in these specialist categories brought into from other EU countries will require a NOVA notification.

If your vehicle complies with the eligibility criteria for VAT RGR then NOVA registration will not be applicable.

Declaration requirements

Customs declarations using the C88

C88 box 6

The information in the Tariff for completion of this box states 'Enter the total number of packages making up the consignment covered by the declaration. When goods are imported in bulk (for example. grain and oil) enter 1'.

We are aware that car import entries are often declared as a bulk consignment and this box is completed simply by entering '1'. The introduction of NOVA will mean where only '1' is entered in this box only one vehicle in the total consignment will be matched to allow DVLA/DVA registration and licensing, if this box is used for matching purposes.

To avoid a mismatch of information between CHIEF and the NOVA computer systems we will not use the information in box 6 and box 41 must be used to enter the correct number of vehicles covered by the customs declaration.

C88 box 41

All the vehicle commodity codes covered by NOVA require a supplementary unit to be entered in box 41. You must make sure that the accurate number of vehicles covered by the declaration is entered in this box to make sure the information can be matched to allow DVLA/DVA registration and licensing.

C88 box 31

Enter the VIN(s) (vehicle identification numbers) of the vehicle(s) to be registered at the DVLA. There is space to enter a maximum of 9801 VINs in box 31.

Withdrawal of customs forms

From 15 April 2013 with the introduction of the NOVA service the following HMRC forms will be withdrawn and no longer accepted by the DVLA/DVA.

C&E 389 - Commercial Importation of Motor Vehicles from outside the European Community by a VAT Registered Trader

C&E388 - Motor Vehicles Brought Permanently into the United Kingdom under Customs Relief

C&E 386 - Payment of Charges Due on Motor Vehicles Brought Permanently into the UK

These forms will be replaced by the NOVA online service which will be used by the DVLA/DVA to check that the duty and VAT has been properly notified and paid (where due) before registering and licensing the vehicle.

For those businesses that cannot use the online service a paper form will be available for completion but processing of such forms will take longer to process by HMRC.

9. Glossary

Term


Description


ATA Carnet


A document accepted by countries party to the ATA Convention which facilitates the temporary import and export of goods and replaces normal customs documentation. 'ATA' stands for 'Admission Temporaire' in French i.e. Temporary Admission.


BIS


Department of Business, Innovation and Skills


CAP charges


Charges arising from the Common Agricultural Policy - duties, agricultural component charges and countervailing charges.


CAP goods


All those listed in Notice 780 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) Import Procedures and Special Directions for Certain Goods.


CFSP


Customs Freight Simplified Procedures.


Common Transit


A customs procedure for the carriage of goods between the EC, the EFTA countries and Romania, and between the EFTA countries themselves.


Community goods


Goods which wholly originate (including component parts), or are in free circulation, in the EU.


Community Transit


A customs procedure that allows goods to be moved from one point in the EU to another. It is mainly for goods not in free circulation.


CT


Community/common Transit.


Customs duty


A tax we charge on imported goods under the Combined Nomenclature of the Community. This also includes charges having equivalent effect for example. anti-dumping duty.


Customs Procedure Code (CPC)


Used on customs declaration Form C88 to identify the procedure for which the goods are declared.


Customs Union


The customs territories of the EU, Turkey, San Marino and Andorra. The unions between the EU and these countries allow most goods in free circulation to move freely between them without the need to claim duty relief, subject to the production of any necessary preference or Community Transit documentation. For Andorra, the union only covers goods in Chapters 25-97 of the Tariff. VAT is still due on imports from Turkey, San Marino and Andorra however unless the relief explained in this notice is applicable and claimed.


Duty and tax


Customs duty, CAP charges, excise duty and VAT.


EU


European Union For the countries concerned, see 'Member State' below.


EFTA


European Free Trade Association comprising Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.


End Use goods


Goods imported from outside the EU are granted favourable rates of duty, provided they are put to prescribed use within set time limits.


Exempt persons


Importers who are not registered for VAT or registered taxable persons who are reimporting goods otherwise than in the course of their business.


Excise duty


An indirect tax on beer, wine, made-wine, cider, perry, spirits, mineral oil, cigarettes and other tobacco products.


Goods in free circulation


Goods of wholly Customs Union origin (including component parts), or goods imported into the Union on which all the import formalities have been completed, and all the duty due has been paid and not repaid in whole or part.


IP goods


Non-free circulation goods brought into the EU to be processed then exported/re-exported with relief from duty and tax.


Member State


A country within the EU (i.e. Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, the Republic of Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK).


NOVA


Notification of Vehicle Arrivals. Online service to notify HMRC of vehicles either being brought into the UK from outside the EU and released into free circulation or where purchased from another EU member state.


OPR goods


Community goods or goods held under IPR arrangements sent for processing outside the EU and returned to the EU.


RPA


Rural Payments Agency


Special Territories


Countries or areas that are part of the customs territory of the Customs Union but not part of the fiscal (VAT and excise) territory. Goods coming from these territories are therefore liable to VAT and excise duty (if appropriate) unless the relief explained in this notice is applicable and claimed. The territories are: the Åland Islands, the Canary Islands, the Channel Islands, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Mount Athos and Reunion.


Tariff


The Tariff is a 3 volume annual publication which is updated monthly containing useful information about customs import and export requirements.


Taxable person


Importers who are registered for VAT and are reimporting goods in the course of their business.


Third country


A country or place outside the Customs Union.


VAT


Value Added Tax


What if I disagree with any of your decisions?

If you do not agree with any decision issued to you there are three options available. Within 30 days of the date of the decision you can either:

  • send new information or arguments to the decision maker
  • request a review of the decision by someone not involved in making the disputed decision.

Your request must be in writing and should set out the reasons why you do not agree with the decision

Please write to:

HM Revenue & Customs
Customs International
Review and Appeals Team
7th floor Southwest
Alexander House
21 Victoria Avenue
SOUTHEND ON SEA
Essex SS99 1AA

Or

  • appeal direct to the Tribunal who are independent of HMRC
  • if you opt to have your case reviewed you will still be able to appeal to the Tribunal if you disagree with the outcome.

Further information relating to reviews and appeals is contained in leaflet HMRC1 which can be obtained from our website or by phone 0300 200 3700.

Your rights and obligations

Your Charter explains what you can expect from us and what we expect from you. For more information, go to www.gov.uk/government/publications/your-charter

Do you have any comments or suggestions?

If you have any comments or suggestions to make about this notice, please write to:

HM Revenue & Customs
Excise Customs Stamps and Money
AEO and Import Policy Team
10th floor
Alexander House
21 Victoria Avenue
SOUTHEND ON SEA
Essex SS99 1AA

Please note this address is not for general enquiries.

For your general enquiries please phone our Helpline 0300 200 3700.

Putting things right

If you are unhappy with our service, please contact the person or office you have been dealing with. They will try to put things right. If you are still unhappy, they will tell you how to complain.

If you want to know more about making a complaint go to www.hmrc.gov.uk and under quick links, select Complaints and appeals.

How we use your information

HM Revenue & Customs is a Data Controller under the Data Protection Act 1998. We hold information for the purposes specified in our notification to the Information Commissioner, including the assessment and collection of tax and duties, the payment of benefits and the prevention and detection of crime, and may use this information for any of them.

We may get information about you from others, or we may give information to them. If we do, it will only be as the law permits to:

  • check the accuracy of information
  • prevent or detect crime
  • protect public funds.

We may check information we receive about you with what is already in our records. This can include information provided by you, as well as by others, such as other government departments or agencies and overseas tax and customs authorities. We will not give information to anyone outside HM Revenue & Customs unless the law permits us to do so.

For more information go to www.hmrc.gov.uk and look for Data Protection Act within the Search facility.

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$START-DATA$ title=Notice 236: Returned Goods Relief (RGR)^ summary=Find out how to reimport goods in the same state they were in on previous export and obtain total or partial relief from customs charges.^ doctype=PublicNotice^ date=29-Jul-2014^ author=KD6030855^ $END-DATA$
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