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Knightobe
04-11-2009, 03:33 PM
Hi everyone,

I am currently trying to set up my own wedding stationery making business. I am very interested in becoming a dealer for Envelopments, an american card supplies company. However I really don't understand import tax!!! I've tried emailing the company but all they have provided me with is how to calculate shipping costs. I checked out the HM Customs & Revenues, but it just seems so daunting.
If I place an order from the states, what do I have to do on this end?

Any help will be much appreciated!

greannancrafts
04-11-2009, 03:42 PM
Why not phone your local tax office?

Jane

nickie1105
04-11-2009, 03:57 PM
Import taxes differ depending on what goods you're importing. Use this site (http://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/dds/cgi-bin/tarquer?Lang=EN) to enter the description of the goods you'll be importing to get what is called a TARIC code and then enter the TARIC code into the database here (http://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/dds/cgi-bin/tarchap?Lang=EN) and it will tell you how much tax you'll expect to pay on the import.

jencel
04-11-2009, 04:27 PM
If the company you're buying from uses the big carriers like UPS and Fedex, they will pay your import duty and VAT, and will either send you a bill for it (plus a handling fee), or you pay it to the driver on delivery.

nattynetty
04-11-2009, 09:56 PM
Import taxes differ depending on what goods you're importing. Use this site (http://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/dds/cgi-bin/tarquer?Lang=EN) to enter the description of the goods you'll be importing to get what is called a TARIC code and then enter the TARIC code into the database here (http://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/dds/cgi-bin/tarchap?Lang=EN) and it will tell you how much tax you'll expect to pay on the import.

Thanks for those links, wonder if those websites were available 5 years ago - would've saved me hours on the phone to customs & excise when I was first contemplating importing supplies.

GlamGlass
04-11-2009, 10:16 PM
Great to have the links, but actually using them is a wee bit hard as their search engine does not like my words!! I did find something in the end but not sure if it was correct!

nickie1105
04-11-2009, 10:56 PM
Yes, it can be a little tricky to use but once you're used to the way it works you should be okay. Try to be a little more general than specific so say you're importing paper table napkins for example, use the search term 'paper' (without quotes) and choose the nearest description to your product. Then click on the number directly to its left and it will give you more options under this section to choose from to find the exact product description.

AnnieAnna
05-11-2009, 09:18 AM
It's awful to read through but it boils down to this:

Are you tichy tiny? If your parcel is worth under 18 you don't have to do anything.

Are you small? If your parcel is being sent through the Post Office/Fedex/ Ups etc and is worth more than 18 you will be asked to pay VAT on it.
If you do nothing and it goes through the Post Office you will be asked to pay the VAT plus a handling fee (it used to be 14). Fedex etc'll have their own fees....
You don't have to worry about commodity numers or anything. The sender gets a custom form that the Post Office/ Fedex etc fill in for them.

So the trick is to get yourself a PSEUDO TURN number (Go through Business Link - Importing - and email whoever and ask for help - they are very nice and will explain in plain Engish if you point out you are a little dazed and confused human being and not an interglobal conglomerate).
Then you ask your foreign supplier to put your TURN number on your parcel and it comes straight through to you like a dream..........and you'll be billed for the VAT later by the Tax people.

If you are a whopping company you'll need a proper TURN number and be doing the commodity thingies but you'll be so rich by then you'll be able to pay someone to work it out for you.

AnnieAnna
PS Your supplier will know nothing about the importing rules for your country. It is up to you to know. What usually happens is you don't know and find out with a huge shock, indignation and a huge bill. so get a PSEUDO TURN number and you'll be laughing.

Knightobe
05-11-2009, 02:08 PM
Right. I think the lesson to be learnt from this is to get my butt in gear and start hasseling some people by email.

It is definitely starting to make more sense now. But still need those nitty gritty details clarified!

Thanks for everyone's help!

nickie1105
05-11-2009, 02:24 PM
Be careful if using Fedex, they seem to make up their fees as they go along. I know many many people who've had to challenge huge bills and have been successful with refunds amounting to hundreds and sometimes thousands of pounds. Find out how much you should be paying and be ready to challenge whatever is on the Fedex invoice!

AnnieAnna
05-11-2009, 02:43 PM
My advice would be ...to start with....and for 'small' parcels .....stick with the local post offices. It's cheaper.
When you go big time then you'll be wanting the insurance and tracking Fedex can give you. That's if you get any choice. It usually the supplier who decides on their courier/method of posting.
AnnieAnna

Knightobe
05-11-2009, 02:50 PM
Well Envelopments sends all their orders through UPS. They have a 50% discount with them. Not sure whether that is good or not, but if they sort out the tax payments for me, then all the better!


:mf:

gbell
06-11-2009, 09:43 AM
I order from a supplier in USA from time to time, last time I ordered about 50s worth I got a bill for 11.80 inport duty from the post office

So I contacted her and asked if she could give me a price to post in small parcels of less than 18 and she posts me separate parcels at $2.97 a time, which is less than the combined postage and tax for one large parcel!

Its worth an ask!