|HMRC Reference:Notice 203A (October 2012)||View Change History|
This notice sets out the United Kingdom’s (UK) requirements for the commercial movement of excise goods by a Registered Consignee.
It contains our:
It also sets out your rights and obligations as a Registered Consignee.
This notice does not cover duty-paid movements or goods imported from outside of the EU.
This notice has been amended to:
You must read this if you are, or wish to become, a Registered Consignee. You should also read this notice if you wish to employ a Registered Consignee to import excise goods from the EU on your behalf. Under such arrangements we will permit an authorised Registered Consignee to pay the excise duty either by:
You will need:
Deferring duty, VAT and other charges
Revenue Traders’ Records
UK Duty Stamps Scheme
Tobacco Products Duty
The Single Market
Intrastat General Guide
Unless we tell you otherwise, either in this notice or in writing, your first point of contact is the Excise Helpline. We have included the details of other teams that you may need to contact in section 15 of this notice.
We will respond in line with our Charter Standards. Details of these are available from our website.
You will find the conditions which cover movements of excisable goods to and from other Member States of the EU in UK law (our regulations) and notices.
You will find the primary legal provisions applicable to the contents of this notice in:
The Customs and Excise Management Act 1979
The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974
You will find detailed requirements in:
The Excise Duties (Deferred Payment) Regulations 1992 (SI 1992/3152)
The Revenue Traders (Accounts and Records) Regulations 1992 (SI 1992/3150)
The Duty Stamps Regulations 2006 (SI 2006/202)
The Excise Goods (Holding, Movement and Duty Point) Regulations 2010 (SI 2010/593)
When we directly refer to the law in this notice, we will show the standard abbreviations as shown in paragraph 2.1.
If you do not meet your legal obligations, we may impose financial penalties for breaches of the regulations or the conditions set out in this notice.
We may also:
For information on how to appeal against any decision we make, see section 14.
Registered Consignees are revenue traders who are approved by and registered with us to receive and account for the duty on duty-suspended excise goods from other Member States. Registered Consignees must account for the duty when the goods are received in the UK. Registered Consignees may not hold or dispatch goods under duty-suspension arrangements.
A Registered Consignee must be approved by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) before he is permitted to receive goods under duty-suspension arrangements (whether or not he owns those goods at the time he receives them).
For further detail please refer to section 4.
Only Tax Warehouses and Registered Consignors approved in other Member States (OMS) may consign duty-suspended goods to Registered Consignees. Registered Consignees may not receive duty-suspended excise goods:
You will find a definition of these terms in the glossary to this notice.
No. Your approval as a Registered Consignee only covers imports of duty-suspended goods. If you wish to receive duty-paid goods from other EU countries you should follow the procedures set out in Notice 204B Commercial Importers and Tax Representatives - EU trade in duty-paid excise goods.
We may permit a Registered Consignee to import excise goods on behalf of others. They may use their own deferment account or their client’s deferment account to pay the duty (provided the account holder has given permission to do so) (see section 6.) The prime liability for the duty however, will always lie with the Registered Consignee who must make sure that the duty is correctly accounted for.
You will find more details about this in Notice 725 The Single Market.
A Registered Consignee is normally required to hold a deferment account, for which a security is required (refer to section 6). For further information, see Notice 101 Deferring duty, VAT and other charges. Otherwise we do not normally require an additional guarantee. We do, however, reserve the right to require a deposit or prepayment of duty for each or any accounting period. If this happens we will tell you what procedures you must follow.
You should not assume that we will automatically approve you. In particular, you should not enter into any binding financial agreements on the assumption that we will grant approval.
Before we will consider your application you must meet the following conditions:
In addition, to receive goods once your application to be a Registered Consignee has been approved, you must also register via 'Government Gateway' and enrol to use the Excise Movement and Control System (EMCS). Use of this system is mandatory (see section 8).
You should obtain form HM1 Application to register for the Registered Consignee scheme from our website.
You should read this notice and the notes on the reverse of form HM1 before you complete the application form. You can apply to register at any time once you have decided that you wish to trade as a Registered Consignee and are able to meet the conditions of approval. When you have decided on a date from which you wish to trade as a Registered Consignee it is in your own interests to apply as early as possible. This is because we will need to carry out a number of verification checks in our approval process. Ideally you should allow at least 45 days.
Once the form is completed you should send this to the National Registration Unit (NRU).
If you provide false or misleading information on your application form we may:
Yes. We may refuse to approve you. In particular, we reserve the right not to approve or register anyone who, at the time of applying, has an ‘unspent’ conviction under ROA (other than for minor motoring offences), has accepted a compounded settlement during the preceding three years or has been involved in serious revenue non-compliance in the past four years. In the case of partnerships and limited companies, this also applies to all the partners or key officials of the company.
If we refuse your application we will inform you in writing and give reasons for the rejection. If you disagree with our decision you have the right to appeal. For further information on how to appeal see section 14.
Yes. There are standard conditions that must be complied with in order to remain approved as a Registered Consignee. You must:
Yes. If we consider it necessary to impose additional conditions we will inform you in writing. If you disagree with any of the additional conditions we impose you have the right to appeal. For further information on how to appeal see section 14.
We aim to process applications within 45 working days of receipt at our NRU. This is to allow us to carry out necessary verification and pre-approval checks which will normally include a visit to your place of business.
If we accept your application, we will issue a certificate to you showing the following information:
You should quote your registration number on any correspondence which you have with us about your Registered Consignee activities and have it available when you contact us.
You should make sure that the detail on the certificate is correct and up to date. If you discover any errors, you should contact the NRU immediately (see section 15 for contact details).
You should keep your certificate in a safe place and make it available to our officers if requested to do so. Your suppliers may also require a copy of this before dispatching goods to you under duty-suspension arrangements.
You must notify the NRU in writing as soon as you become aware of any change affecting your business.
Where we vary the terms of your approval we will issue a revised certificate. Note: EMCS will not allow the dispatch of categories of goods for which the Registered Consignee is not approved to receive.
It is in your own interests to make sure that your consignors or suppliers are aware of any changes to your approval.
If the status of your business or the company changes (for example, a sole proprietor becomes a partnership) the new legal entity must apply to become a Registered Consignee in its own right. You cannot assume that we will automatically approve the new applicant. Where appropriate, cancellation of the previous approval should be notified to us.
If you wish to change the terms and conditions of your approval to accommodate changes in your business model (for example, adding categories of goods to your approval or requesting to operate direct delivery arrangements) you should write to the NRU giving details (see section 15). You should provide these at least ten working days before the start of the accounting period in which you wish us to vary your approval. We reserve the right to refuse such requests where we have good reason to do so.
If you wish to cancel your approval, you must write to the NRU at least ten working days before the start of the accounting period in which you want the cancellation to take place.
We will not normally agree to cancel your approval until we are satisfied that you have paid all the duty due on goods you have imported using your Registered Consignee approval.
We will inform you in writing when we have cancelled your approval.
Once deregistered you are obliged to keep your business records for a period of six years. You must make these available to HMRC if requested to do so. Note: even if you are deregistered you will remain liable for any duty unpaid on goods for which you were correctly shown to be the Registered Consignee whilst registered.
Yes. We may revoke or vary the terms of your approval at any time for reasonable cause. For example, where appropriate due diligence checks are not being carried out (see section 17). If this happens we will inform you in writing and give the reasons for our action.
Where we vary the terms of your approval we will issue you with a revised certificate. It is in your own interests to make sure that the consignors who supply goods to you (or your customers via direct delivery arrangements) are aware of changes to your approval.
The Excise Movement and Control System (EMCS) will not allow dispatch of goods where the consignee is not approved. Your details will be included on the System for the Exchange of Excise Data (SEED) database, which is linked to EMCS. EMCS will automatically verify approval detail against this SEED information when the consignor raises the eAD in the Member State of dispatch. It is in your own interests to make sure that your suppliers are aware of your correct registration details.
Normally excise goods may only be consigned to the Registered Consignee’s registered address. However, we may permit a Registered Consignee to receive goods at other addresses. This is known as ‘direct delivery’. For example, if you are acting on behalf of a third party, and wish goods to be delivered directly to that customer, you must be approved to operate direct delivery.
Yes. You must apply for approval to receive goods under direct delivery arrangements. This can be done at the same time as applying for approval as a Registered Consignee or, if your need to operate direct delivery occurs after this, by applying to the NRU in writing for a variation to your approval. If we approve you to operate direct delivery then goods which are consigned to you as the legal consignee may be delivered to any UK business address including the address of your customer.
Note: approval to operate direct delivery is not automatic - we reserve the right to refuse applications where the application fails our fitness criteria or where you can not demonstrate a genuine business need.
To receive goods under direct delivery arrangements the following conditions apply:
If goods are to be directly delivered to your customers you must have procedures in place to make sure that your customers notify you immediately when the goods are received by them.
Under direct delivery arrangements the approved Registered Consignee is responsible for:
regardless of the ownership of the goods.
You will find more information about this in Notice 101 Deferring duty, VAT and other charges. Note: where a deferment account is used to account for duty on goods received by a Registered Consignee, a deferment guarantee is required to cover the full duty liability in each Registered Consignee accounting period.
You must obtain written authority, on form HM8 Authority to use another trader's Deferment Approval Number, from the person whose duty deferment account you wish to use. You must send the completed form to our Registered Consignee Accounting Centre. Once the Registered Consignee Accounting Centre has received this form, they will notify you of the date from which you may use the third party deferment account. You should obtain confirmation from the duty deferment account holder that the duty deferment guarantee level is sufficient to cover the duty for the period of use.
You must tell us if your duty deferment account number changes, or when the guarantee in place is insufficient to cover your liabilities as a Registered Consignee.
To become a UK Registered Consignee you must be VAT registered in the UK (see paragraph 4.2). If your turnover is below the VAT registration threshold (see Notice 700 The VAT Guide) and you wish to apply for approval as a Registered Consignee then you must first apply for voluntary VAT registration. You can find information about VAT registration on our website www.hmrc.gov.uk or you can phone our Helpline 0300 200 3700.
If you are already registered as a Registered Consignee you must remain registered for VAT whilst approved as a Registered Consignee.
Individual corporate bodies within a VAT group which require Registered Consignee approval must apply for separate approval. They should quote the VAT group registration number and their unique site reference number when applying.
EMCS is the electronic system for recording and validating all movements of duty-suspended excise goods within the EU. For each movement an electronic record known as an eAD must be raised on EMCS and the Administrative Reference Code (ARC) that is generated as a result of this must accompany the goods.
You will need to be able to access the internet in order to use EMCS to access eAD notifications sent to you and send a message back to your supplier confirming receipt of the goods (known as a Report of Receipt). EMCS can be accessed through the Online Services section of the HMRC website, by developing an in-house IT system that interfaces with EMCS or by purchasing a bespoke IT system designed by a suitable software supplier to interface directly with EMCS.
Whichever option you choose, you will first need to register for access to our Online Services. Guidance on how to do this is provided on the Online Services home page. (If you are already registered for Online Services for another reason, you do not need to re-register). You will then need to add EMCS onto the list of services you wish to have access to. Your activation code will be sent to you through the post, which may take up to seven days to process.
As access to EMCS requires an excise registration number, you will only be able to enrol once you have been approved as a Registered Consignee. Your Registered Consignee number should then be used as your user ID for all future access.
You must make sure that you can access EMCS before you order your first consignment.
Yes. However, where EMCS is not available the goods may be dispatched under fallback arrangements (see paragraph 8.9).
The only exception to this is where a consignment of wine is being dispatched by a small wine producer based in a Member State that exempts such traders from the requirements of EMCS. In these cases the movement should be accompanied by a document drawn up by the small wine producer in accordance with EU Commission Regulation 436/2009. There are no receipt provisions under this regulation therefore you should discuss with your supplier what evidence of receipt they require.
No. The consignor is the only one who can raise the eAD at the start of a movement.
Once the consignor raises an eAD, you will receive a message through EMCS to tell you that this has been done. It is therefore in your interest to regularly access EMCS to check for messages.
On arrival of the goods, you should also expect the ARC to be noted on the accompanying commercial documentation. The ARC is generated when your supplier raises the eAD. We recommend that you remind your consignor to do this when placing an order, as goods moving without an ARC are liable to forfeiture.
In the case of Registered Consignees, EMCS will only permit dispatches where the consignee is authorised to receive the category of goods being sent. When ordering goods, you must supply (or arrange to supply) the consignor with your Registered Consignee approval number and your name and address. The consignor of the goods will need these details for the completion of the eAD.
The consignor must raise the eAD which in turn produces the ARC. This code must accompany the goods at all times.
Once the consignor raises an eAD you will receive a message through EMCS to tell you this has been done.
As soon as any goods correctly consigned to you as the legal Registered Consignee are received by you or at a direct delivery address you must record this permanently in your duty account. Once you are in receipt of the goods (whether at your registered premises or at a direct delivery address) you must submit a Report of Receipt. In order to do this, you need to access EMCS, find the correct eAD using the ARC for that movement, and follow the online instructions.
You must submit a Report of Receipt within five business days of receiving the goods.
The approved Registered Consignee is the only person who can provide the Report of Receipt.
Where there is a serious incident affecting the movement, for example an accident or theft, you should notify the Registered Consignee team immediately. HMRC will then raise an Event Report on EMCS, based on the information you provide. This message will be visible to both you and your supplier.
Where an Event Report is raised by the authorities in the dispatching Member State there may be documents attached, which you will not be able to view on EMCS. In such cases the message you receive will tell you that an attachment has been removed. You can obtain a copy of the attachment by contacting the EMCS Helpdesk.
If EMCS is unavailable at the time the goods are dispatched they will travel under 'fallback' arrangements, which require the goods to be accompanied by a fallback accompanying document. You will be able to identify this document because it will include the statement 'fallback accompanying document for movements of excise goods under duty-suspension of Excise Duty'. If a consignment of goods is received under cover of a fallback accompanying document you should wait for your consignment to be shown on EMCS and then provide your Report of Receipt on EMCS in the normal way.
The fallback accompanying document will not include an ARC; as the movement was not recorded on EMCS at the time of dispatch. A Local Reference Number (LRN) provided by the consignor will uniquely identify the movement instead. As soon as the system becomes available again in the other Member State the consignor will record the movement on to EMCS. You can use the LRN provided by the consignor in place of the ARC to identify your movement on EMCS.
If EMCS is not available for you to provide a Report of Receipt, you should wait for EMCS to become available and then provide your Report of Receipt in the normal way.
If EMCS is available but you continue to have problems submitting a report of receipt, you should contact the EMCS Helpdesk (see section 15 for contact details). Where the problem is with the system and cannot be resolved, they will issue you with a manual closure request form. This must be completed and returned to the Helpdesk without delay, as the movement will remain open on EMCS until the required information is received.
On receipt of a fully completed manual closure request form, we will forward it on to the authorities in the Member State of dispatch for them to close the movement on EMCS. You and the consignor should receive a message through EMCS confirming that the movement has been manually closed.
Please note: you could become liable to a financial penalty where you fail to receipt movements you receive via EMCS. In addition, where a movement is not closed on EMCS your supplier may be required to pay duty in the Member State of dispatch.
Note: You must be approved to operate direct delivery.
You must make sure that your clients and their suppliers know that you are the consignee for the movement. The consignor must enter your details, along with the direct delivery address, onto the eAD.
If you operate direct delivery it is in your own interests to regularly check EMCS and make sure that all goods consigned to you and their delivery addresses are ones you are aware of. As soon as you become aware that the goods or addresses are not proper to you, you should contact the consignor. The consignor can then cancel the movement or change the intended destination.
As the approved Registered Consignee you must make sure that the recipient of goods at direct delivery addresses notifies you immediately of their arrival and that you send an appropriate Report of Receipt, no later than five working days after the goods are received at the intended delivery address, to the consignor using EMCS.
On EMCS you will be able to see the details of all movements that are consigned to you. As soon as you become aware of an unwanted consignment, for example, one that you believe has been incorrectly consigned to you, or which is a different brand or quantity than you asked for, you should contact your supplier to alert them to the problem.
EMCS provides the ability to do this electronically. You have the option to send either an alert message in relation to a specific consignment to inform the consignor of an error on the eAD, or to send a rejection message in order to reject the consignment entirely. The consignor can then cancel the movement or change the intended destination.
In the event of an unwanted consignment physically arriving at your premises, you should immediately notify the Excise Helpline, who will tell you what you should do (see paragraph 8.17).
If necessary the destination address can be changed by the consignor. If you operate direct delivery and have given your supplier the wrong delivery address then you must contact your supplier immediately for a change to be made, as it is only the consignor who can make changes to the delivery address.
If you do not operate direct delivery, goods may only be consigned to your registered address or, if you reject the consignment, to someone authorised to receive them (for example, returned to the warehouse of dispatch). Changes can only be made by the consignor.
Registered Consignees, their customers and their staff must make sure that systems are in place to record shortages and surpluses in their commercial records. The customer must also make sure that the Registered Consignee for that movement is made aware of any discrepancies. The Registered Consignee should notify the consignor of any discrepancies on the EMCS Report of Receipt.
In addition to reporting the shortage to the consignor via EMCS, the Registered Consignee must also report any shortages, that is, goods which have not been received at the Registered Consignee’s or customer’s place of delivery, to the National Verification Centre (NVC) (see section 15) as soon as the shortage is known.
In some circumstances you may also wish to consider submitting an explanation on reasons for shortages or excesses message. Unlike the information that can and should be entered on the Report of Receipt when reporting a shortage, this message can only be read by you, the UK authorities and the authorities in the Member State of dispatch. This message can be useful where you may wish to provide information regarding discrepancies that may be sensitive and which you do not wish to share with your supplier.
As a Registered Consignee you are only liable for the duty on the goods received at the delivery address. The person liable for any duty on any chargeable losses, whilst the goods are in transit, is normally the person who guaranteed the movement of the goods. Allowable losses are losses due either to a genuine accident or to the nature of the goods.
If you discover excesses you must enter the goods into your stock accounts and account for the duty on the excess goods. You should contact NVC if your approval does not include the type of excess goods which you have received. All excesses must be recorded on the Report of Receipt.
In some circumstances you may also wish to consider submitting an explanation on reasons for shortages or excesses message (see paragraph 8.14.1).
The person liable for any duty on chargeable losses whilst the goods are in transit is normally the person who guaranteed the movement of the goods.
The rate of duty which applies will depend on the Member State in which the loss occurred or, where this is unknown, it was detected. If HMRC detect, or become aware of, an irregularity which results in a UK duty point we will take steps to recover the duty from the person who provided the movement guarantee.
As a Registered Consignee, if any expected goods do not arrive within a reasonable time and you do not know the reason for the delay then you should tell your consignor and our NVC. You must also try to find out what happened to the goods.
If you have taken delivery of goods which you have not ordered, you should account for the duty when the goods arrive. If you decide to return or destroy the goods you may be able to claim the duty back under drawback. You will find more information about this in Notice 207 Excise duty: Drawback.
You will also find more information at 8.17.
Registered Consignees are not permitted to use the refusal functionality on EMCS to refuse a consignment. This is because the refusal (either full or partial) is made by submitting a Report of Receipt. This creates a duty point, requiring immediate payment of UK duty.
However, EMCS provides Registered Consignees with the option to reject a consignment before or during transit. If you receive an eAD on EMCS which is incorrect or which you are not expecting, then you can use the facility to either alert the consignor to the discrepancy or reject the consignment outright, provided that the goods have not yet physically arrived at their destination.
In most cases, you may not reject goods consigned to you once they have physically arrived at your premises. You must take full account of the goods immediately, submit the Report of Receipt accepting the movement and enter the details to your duty account records. You must pay any outstanding duty.
However, in certain circumstances, for example, health and safety reasons, we may allow you to reject the consignment, even though the goods have arrived. This is only possible where a problem has been discovered on arrival, for example during a tailgate check. If goods have been offloaded and the transporting vehicle has departed, then this option is no longer available. If you wish to reject a consignment that has arrived, you should immediately contact the Registered Consignee Accounting Centre to obtain authorisation to do so. Once you have received this you must inform your supplier of your decision and reject the consignment on EMCS. The consignor will then amend the destination on the eAD to allow the goods to be delivered to an alternative address.
If you have accepted a consignment, you cannot subsequently reject it.
Registered Consignees are liable for the duty on all consignments of excise goods that are correctly consigned to them, regardless of where the goods are actually delivered to or which deferment account is used. For details on how to account for discrepancies discovered on receipt please see section 8.
If you are the Registered Consignee then you are responsible for the receipt and duty payment of those goods. This includes any damaged goods. You may not reject properly consigned goods after you have received them (orders may only be rejected before the goods are dispatched by the consignor, or when they are in transit). You must enter them in your records and make sure that any duty due is properly accounted for.
If you decide to return or destroy the goods you may be able to claim drawback of the excise duty. You will find more information about this in Notice 207 Excise duty: Drawback.
Duty becomes due when goods reach an excise duty point. Where goods are consigned to a Registered Consignee the duty point occurs when the goods are received in the UK by the Registered Consignee at his registered address or at a direct delivery address (if the Registered Consignee is approved to receive goods under direct delivery arrangements). The Registered Consignee is principally liable for the duty on all goods correctly consigned to him.
The Registered Consignee must note the date of receipt in their records for each consignment.
A Registered Consignee must have a duty deferment account, or have permission to use a third party’s deferment account. The payment is deferred and the duty is paid in accordance with the deferment arrangements (see sections 6 and 13).
Duty is due on the goods at the rates in force at the time the duty point occurs. This is the time when the goods are received at either the Registered Consignee’s registered address or a direct delivery address. You can find the current duty rates on the Rates and Tables section of our website go to www.hmrc.gov.uk
When you are completing your Registered Consignee returns you should check that you are using the correct rate of duty in force at the duty point.
You, the Registered Consignee for the excise goods, are responsible for working out the correct duty due on each receipt, even if you employ someone else to calculate the duty on your behalf.
You should then calculate the duty due on the consignment (see section 16 of this notice for examples of duty calculations).
Current duty rates can be found on the HMRC website. The tax types can be found in the Integrated Tariff of the United Kingdom.
You should contact the Excise Helpline if you have any enquiries about duty rates, tax types or the category of the goods.
Registered Consignees must use calendar monthly accounting periods.
You must keep a duty account in accordance with our guidance in Notice 206 Revenue Traders’ Records, summarising:
The duty account and its supporting documents must show, per deferment account used:
You should make sure that your duty account is kept fully up to date.
In particular, you should make sure that, if you operate direct delivery, duty has been correctly accounted for, in the correct accounting period, on all consignments consigned to you and delivered to direct delivery addresses.
You can access and download form HM2 Return of Excise Duty for Registered Consignees or Registered Commercial Importers from our website. This return must be completed and delivered to the Registered Consignee Accounting Centre (see section 15) within four consecutive working days (three if a non-business day intervenes) after the end of the accounting period (calendar month). We may also allow you to submit a plain paper return as long as it contains the same information as our standard return. If you wish to submit plain paper returns you should send an example of your proposed document to our Registered Consignee Accounting Centre in order that we may consider your proposal.
If you fail to submit your returns in time, or if you submit an inaccurate return we may:
Yes. You must submit a return for accounting periods in which your duty liability is ‘nil’.
At the end of each accounting period you must calculate the duty due for each tax type. A separate return must be used for each deferment account you intend duty to be paid through. Each return must include all goods on which the duty is being paid using that deferment account. You must declare all goods received by you when you are shown as the Registered Consignee, either directly or via a direct delivery address.
You must then send the return to the address shown on the return.
Procedures in this section cover errors which you discover. They do not apply where we have begun to examine your accounts for the periods in which the errors were made. Nor do they cover any case where you are aware that an irregularity has occurred which involves a breach of the law.
For such errors, you must make the necessary adjustments in your records by tax type for the current accounting period in a way which makes it easy for us to check. You must draw attention to the adjustment by ticking the relevant box on your next return.
In addition to making the necessary adjustments in your records, you must tell us, with an explanation, as soon as the errors are found. You must do this in writing addressed to the Registered Consignee Accounting Centre.
If you have overpaid duty to us, those sums can be offset against the same tax type code on subsequent declarations, provided the deferment account is the same.
If you, the Registered Consignee, can justify a request for direct repayment you should complete a repayment form HM6 Claim for repayment of excise duties and submit it to our Registered Consignee Accounting Centre. We will accept such requests only if we are satisfied that you cannot make the adjustment through your normal systems, for example, if you have an unusually high duty liability for a particular tax type in one particular accounting period. We will only repay the holder of the deferment account which was originally debited.
If we discover errors on your return we will tell you what you must do and whether or not a penalty is due.
We will check your return and debit the appropriate sums from the relevant deferment account on the next ‘payment day’.
The payment day for Registered Consignee transactions is the 15th of each month following each calendar monthly accounting period (except for beer which is the 25th of each month).
If the payment date falls on a non-banking day (when banks are closed) the payment date is:
Seven days before the payment day we will send each deferment account holder a Registered Consignee statement showing the amount being debited.
Check your records thoroughly and make sure that any discrepancy relates to Registered Consignee transactions. If it does, contact the Registered Consignee Accounting Centre who will advise on the appropriate action to be taken. If not, you should follow the guidance set out in Notice 101 Deferring duty, VAT and other charges.
You must declare all duty due within each accounting period therefore there is no limit to how much you can declare on each return. However, due to Bacs payment scheme restrictions we are no longer able to collect direct debits in excess of £20 million. If you have a payment to make which exceeds £20 million, you should make arrangements to pay us, on the due date, by an alternative payment method such as CHAPS.
We may do from time to time. If we need to ask you for information about your business, we will contact you directly.
Yes. We will visit you from time to time to check your business.
When we visit you must do all of the following:
Alternatively, there may be occasions when we ask you to produce records at one of our offices.
Failure to comply with these requirements may result in your approval being revoked.
We will normally make an appointment. Occasionally, visits are made without an appointment but the attending officer will give the reason for the unannounced visit.
All our officers carry identification and will show this when they arrive. We aim to carry out our visits as quickly and efficiently as possible. You can help by providing the relevant records and helping us to understand them, especially if there is anything special or unusual about your particular business.
While our officers are on your premises you must make sure their safety at all times.
If you do not provide our officers safe access to your premises and to your excise goods we will restrict or revoke your approval.
Yes. As a Registered Consignee, you are a revenue trader and must keep records and accounts. In particular, Registered Consignees must keep a duty account. You will find more information about this in Notice 206 Revenue Traders’ Records and section 9 of this notice.
In this case, you must comply with the fiscal marking provisions. You will find more information about this in Notice 476 Tobacco Products Duty.
In this case, you must comply with UK Duty Stamps provisions. You will find more information about this in Notice DS5 Duty Stamps Scheme.
When we make a decision that you can appeal against we will tell you and offer you a review. We will explain the decision and tell you what you need to do if you disagree.
For example with:
You will usually have three options. Within 30 days you can:
A review will be handled by a different officer from the one who made the decision. If you prefer to have an independent tribunal hear your case, you must write directly to the Tribunals Service (see 14.12).
Yes. If you want us to review a decision, you must write to the person who issued the decision letter within 30 days of the date of that letter. We will complete our review within 45 days unless we agree another time with you.
You cannot ask the tribunal to hear your case until the 45 days (or the time agreed with you) has expired, or we have told you the outcome of the review.
If you are not satisfied with the conclusion of the review, you have 30 days within which to ask the tribunal to hear your case.
If we cannot complete our review within 45 days, or any time agreed with you, we will ask you whether you are willing to agree to an extension so that we can complete the review. If you do not agree to an extension the review is treated as concluding that the decision being reviewed is upheld.
We will write and tell you this; you then have 30 days from the date of that letter to ask the tribunal to hear your case.
Your request should set out clearly the full details of your case, the reasons why you disagree with us and provide any supporting documentation. You should also state what result you expect from our review.
If you do not want a review you may appeal to an independent tribunal. You need to send your appeal to the Tribunals Service within 30 days of the date of decision letter.
You can find further information about reviews and appeals in factsheet HMRC1 HMRC Decisions - what to do if you disagree. You can get this factsheet by:
You can also find more information about how to appeal on the Tribunals Service website, or by phoning 0845 223 8080.
In the majority of cases, you should be able to find the information you need on our website at www.hmrc.gov.uk. If you cannot find the answer there, your first point of contact should be the Helpline on 0300 200 3700.
CITEX Written Enquiry Team
PO Box 30001
Online: Excise Enquiry form
Phone: 0300 200 3700
If you have submitted an application to register as a Registered Consignee, and wish to either request an update on the progress of your application, or notify us of any changes to the information you have provided, you should contact our National Registration Unit (NRU).
HMRC National Registration Unit (NRU)
21 India Street
Phone: 03000 516231
Fax: 03000 516249
If your query does not relate to a current registration or new application, then you should not contact the NRU, as they will not be able to deal with your question.
If you wish to report any shortages or excesses for consignments you have received as a Registered Consignee, you must contact our National Verification Centre (NVC).
HMRC National Verification Centre
7 Cochrane Street
Email: NVC Glasgow
Fax: 03000 576109
If you are submitting returns, making a request for direct repayment or you are making an enquiry about your deferment holder's statement, you must contact the Registered Consignees Accounting Centre (RCAC).
Registered Consignees Accounting Centre
St Mungo's Road
Phone: 03000 583099
If you are having a problem with EMCS, you should first check whether your question is answered on the EMCS pages of the HMRC website. In particular known issues and times that EMCS is unavailable are displayed here.
If the HMRC website does not provide the answer, if you have received an Event Report which is missing an attachment or you are unable to submit a report of receipt in order to close a movement on EMCS you should contact the EMCS Helpdesk.
Phone: 03000 575 989
Please note: If your question is about the registration or enrolment process for EMCS, then you should instead contact the EMCS Online Services Helpdesk on 0300 200 3701.
Unless HMRC has approved the use of an alternative method of calculating the duty that does not disadvantage the revenue, you must work out each constituent stage of the calculation process to a minimum of four decimal places.
The amount of duty due should be rounded down to two decimal places (for example, £2,957.3532 should be expressed as £2,957.35).
The following examples may assist you in calculating Excise Duty. Please note: the rates used are only examples and are not the current duty rates.
Current rates of Excise Duty for all excise goods can be found in the Rates and Tables section of the HMRC website or in Part 12, Volume 1 of the Tariff.
Excise Duty on wine and cider is charged on the total hectolitres of product. It is charged in bandings, according to the strength of the product (its abv) and whether it is still or sparkling. It is calculated by converting the bulk litres of products into hectolitres and then applying the current rate of Excise Duty.
To find the Excise Duty on a case of still wine containing 12 bottles of 75cl at 7% abv:
Beer duty is charged on the hectolitre per cent of alcohol in the beer. It is calculated by converting the bulk litres of beer into hectolitres and multiplying by the alcohol by volume (abv) figure declared. The current Excise Duty rate is then applied to this figure. There are three main rates of beer duty:
1. General Beer Duty (GBD). The standard rate of GBD applies to all beer with an abv exceeding 2.8% but not exceeding 7.5%.
To find the Excise Duty on 327 cases of beer each containing 24 bottles of 33cl at 5 % abv:
2. High Strength Beer Duty (HSBD) is payable on beer exceeding 7.5% abv. It is payable in addition to general beer duty (GBD). For the purposes of the calculation below we have used a GBD rate of £18.57 (as in the previous example) and a HSBD rate of £4.64 (25% of the General Beer Duty rate).
To find the total Excise Duty on 450 cases of beer each containing 24 bottles of 27.5cl at 8 per cent abv.
First work out the hl per cent of alcohol in the consignment (as explained in the previous example).
24 × 27.5cl = 6.6 litres per case.
6.6 × 450 = 2,970 litres in total.
2,970/100 = £29.7hl in total.
29.7 × 8 = 237.6hl per cent.
Then multiply this amount by both the GBD and the HSBD rates:
237.6 × GBD rate of £18.57 = £4,412.232, truncated to £4,412.23.
237.6 × HSBD rate of £4.64 = £1,102.464, truncated to £1,102.46.
Total Duty payable
GBD + HSBD = £4,412.23 + £1,102.46 = £5,514.69.
3. There is also a reduced rate of General Beer Duty for lower strength beer (i.e. beer exceeding 1.2% abv but not exceeding 2.8% abv). For the purposes of the calculation below we have used a GBD rate of £18.57 (as in the previous examples) and a reduced rate of £9.29 (50% of the General Beer Duty rate).
To find the Excise Duty on 375 cases of beer each containing 24 bottles of 27.5cl at 2.8 per cent abv:
First find the hectolitre per cent of alcohol in the consignment (as explained in the previous examples)
24 × 275ml = 6.6 litres per case
6.6 × 375 = 2,475 litres in total
2,475/100 = 24.75hl in total
24.75 × 2.8 = 69.3hl%.
To calculate the actual duty due, multiply the hl per cent amount by the duty rate.
69.3 × £9.29 = £643.797, truncated to £643.79.
Please note: beer that qualifies for small brewery relief is eligible for different reduced rates of duty. For further information on how to calculate the correct duty rate on small brewery beer please see Notice 226 Beer Duty.
Duty is charged on the alcohol content of the spirit (i.e. the litres of pure alcohol). This is calculated by multiplying the bulk litres by the alcoholic strength (abv). The Excise Duty is then obtained by multiplying this amount by the spirit duty rate.
To calculate the Excise Duty on 79 cases of 43 per cent whisky each containing 12 × 70cl.
Due diligence is the appropriate reasonable care a company exercises when entering into business relations or contracts with other companies, and how it responds in a deliberate reflexive manner to trading risks identified.
Without effective safeguards in place, there are considerable risks to all businesses along alcohol supply chains of becoming implicated in illicit trading.
This condition requires that all excise registered businesses operating in the alcohol sector consider the risk of excise duty evasion as well as any commercial and other risks when they are trading. Doing so will help to drive illicit trading out of alcohol supply chains, and reduce the risk to businesses of financial liabilities associated with goods on which duty has been evaded.
From 1 November 2014 it becomes a condition of your approval as a Registered Consignee that you must:
(a) objectively assess the risks of alcohol duty fraud within the supply chains in which you operate
(b) put in place reasonable and proportionate checks, in your day to day trading, to identify transactions that may lead to fraud or involve goods on which duty may have been evaded
(c) have procedures in place to take timely and effective mitigating action where a risk of fraud is identified
(d) document the checks you intend to carry out and have appropriate management governance in place to make sure that these are, and continue to be, carried out as intended.
The fraud risks within a supply chain are unique to each business, and objective assessment of the likelihood of your trading activities contributing to fraud is an essential first step to developing effective due diligence procedures. You will need to consider the full range of trading relationships you have established and the potential for fraud in each.
The main risks within the alcohol sector include:
A key feature of the smuggling or diversion of alcohol to the UK market is the ability to source product either where the excise duty has been suspended or it has been refunded under drawback provisions. To assess your exposure to this risk you will need to objectively assess if there is potential for duty evasion resulting from your trading activity. You will need to know who you are selling to and where the goods are destined for and understand the market for these products. Without this, there is a risk of supplying goods directly or through a third party into illicit supply chains.
Import and warehousing procedures are often exploited to provide cover for the illicit movement of goods. Fraudsters will seek to distribute duty evaded goods as well as counterfeit alcohol into legitimate retail supply chains. To assess your exposure to this risk you will need to objectively consider whether the supply chain and trading activity is credible which includes knowing who you source goods from and provide a service to.
High level indicators of risk include goods being received from unusually complex or apparently uneconomic supply routes, for example, regular supplies of UK produced goods that have been shipped out to another Member State and then re-imported. If you are sourcing duty paid goods you will also need to consider the credibility of suppliers and the level of evidence you can obtain to demonstrate the provenance and duty status of goods.
Paragraph 17.9 of this notice provides further detail on risk indicators.
Once you have established the main risks of fraud you may be exposed to, your regular checks during trading should be of a type and level sufficient to establish the integrity of the excise transactions and supply chains you are trading in. This level needs to be reasonable and proportionate to the risk.
Depending on the nature of your business and complexity of your transactions, checks will need to be individually tailored. In particular, they must be sufficiently sensitive, yet robust enough, to pick up potential fraud risks. These checks should provide protection from the threat of fraud or you becoming inadvertently involved in fraudulent activity.
As a general rule “FITTED” checks should normally focus on:
Paragraph 17.10 of this notice provides more examples.
It is expected that your due diligence procedures will provide effective control over the risks of fraud within your supply chains. Where your checks indicated real concerns, we would normally expect aspects of your supply chain to be changed to address this, e.g. the supplier or the destination of the goods. However, a decision of whether or not to trade with another party remains a commercial decision for your business to take.
If your checks lead you to suspect duty fraud you should also inform our Customs Hotline. You can contact them by calling 0800 595 000 or by completing our secure online form, which is available at www.hmrc.gov.uk/reportingfraud/online.htm
You can also notify them by post at:
HM Revenue & Customs
Yes. As part of our enforcement and general audit programmes, we will consider whether or not the steps you have taken to embed anti-fraud due diligence into your trading activity are sufficient and timely to address fraud risks in your supply chains. We will aim to establish whether you have objectively assessed the risks in your supply chain, and you must be able to demonstrate that you have put in place reasonable and proportionate checks and effective procedures to respond to fraud risks when they arise.
If your due diligence procedures are considered insufficient to address fraud risks, we will carefully consider the facts of the case before taking further action, but where appropriate we will seek to support you to strengthen your procedures.
In more serious cases such as a failure to consider the risks, undertake due diligence checks or respond to clear indications of fraud, we will apply appropriate and proportionate sanctions. For serious non compliance, such as ignoring warnings or knowingly entering into high risk transactions, we may revoke excise approvals and licences.
You are also reminded that handling goods liable to excise duty held outside a duty suspension arrangement may cause you to become liable for any excise duty due on those goods and an excise wrongdoing penalty. Any of those goods you currently hold could also be liable to forfeiture.
Paragraphs 17.9 and 17.10 of this notice provide further details on risk indicators and outline some of the checks that you may carry out to identify high risk transactions. Please note these are not intended to be prescriptive or exhaustive. Once you have established the most appropriate due diligence tests for your business, these should be used to test both new and existing transactions and supply chains linked to your business. Some checks may be more appropriate to your business than others.
You should be concerned about a prospective transaction where you identify one or more of the following indicators in both suppliers and customers, the presence of which may lead you to make further inquiries. Please note, this list is not exhaustive:
Financial health of the company you intend trading with
Identity of the business
Terms of contract, payment and credit agreements
The goods are to be received from an unusual source or supply route, for example, UK produced goods are sourced from another country and directly compete with those from a more direct supply route
Existence or Provenance of goods
Terms of any contracts, payments and credit agreements
Existence or provenance
Administrative Reference Code. This is the authorisation number for a movement of duty-suspended excise goods within the EU. It is obtained by raising an eAD on EMCS, and must then accompany the movement.
A natural or legal person authorised by the competent authorities of a Member State in the course of his business, to produce, process, hold, receive or dispatch excise goods under a duty-suspension in a tax warehouse.
An offer by Customs not to pursue criminal action in return for a penalty payment made by the person who committed the offence.
A stamp attached to alcoholic beverages with an abv of 30% or above in container sizes of 35cl or above to indicate that UK duty has been or will be paid.
electronic Administrative Document. This is the electronic message that is raised on EMCS to record and validate a duty-suspended movement of excise goods within the EU.
Excise Movement and Control System. This is an electronic system for authorising, validating, recording and monitoring all movements of duty-suspended excise goods within the EU.
For the purpose of this notice, an indirect tax on certain goods, for example beer, wine, made-wine, cider, perry, spirits, mineral oil, cigarettes and other tobacco products. Both UK produced and UK imported goods are subject to Excise Duty.
Goods which are liable to Excise Duty.
In the context of this notice a mark carried on packets of cigarettes and hand-rolling tobacco indicating that Tobacco Products Duty has been paid.
Once import procedures have been completed and any customs duties or similar charges have been paid in an EU Member State, goods imported from non-EU countries are said to be in ‘free circulation’ within the EU.
A natural or legal person authorised by the competent authorities of the Member State of destination, in the course of his business and under the conditions fixed by those authorities to receive excise goods from another EU Member State, dispatched under duty-suspension arrangements. A Registered Consignee may not hold or dispatch goods in duty-suspension.
A natural or legal person authorised by the competent authorities of the Member State of importation, in the course of his business and under the conditions fixed by those authorities, to only dispatch excise goods under a duty-suspension arrangement, upon their release for free circulation.
In the context of this notice, anyone carrying on a trade or a business concerned with the buying, selling, importation, exportation, dealing in, or handling, financing or facilitation of excise goods, and the financing or facilitation of any such transactions or activities. You will find a full definition in CEMA section 1.
System for the Exchange of Excise Data. This is an EU wide database of tax warehouses and Registered Traders, including Registered Consignees.
In the context of this notice a person who supplies excise goods in duty-suspension.
Integrated Tariff of the United Kingdom which sets out information about:
An EU term for premises approved under the legislation of the Member State in which the premises are located for the:
Temporary Registered Consignee
Temporary Registered Consignees are excise traders that are authorised to receive duty-suspended excise goods from other EU Member States on a consignment by consignment basis. They may not hold or dispatch excise goods in duty-suspension.
Value Added Tax is charged on the importation of goods at the same time as if the goods had been supplied in the UK. It is chargeable in addition to customs/excise duties and is calculated on a value which includes such charges.
Your Charter explains what you can expect from us and what we expect from you. For more information, go to www.gov.uk/hmrc/your-charter.
If you have any comments or suggestions to make about this notice, please write to:
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