VAT & DUTY: Once you inform HMRC of an imported vehicle they will tell you whether any VAT or excise duty is due.
As a rule, UK VAT and duty get charged on the total cost of the vehicle. But, the levies may also apply to:
- Any accessories brought with the vehicle into the United Kingdom.
- Delivery and certain other additional charges.
HM Revenue and Customs will calculate the amount of VAT and duty you need to pay.
They use specific rates according to the type of vehicle and which country it got imported from. There are set methods of payment when importing a vehicle into the UK from a country inside the European Union.
Vehicle Imports from the EU
- Vehicles imported for personal use: Pay VAT only and direct to HM Revenue and Customs.
- Vehicles imported for a VAT-registered business: Pay VAT only on the next VAT Return.
- Vehicles imported for a non VAT registered business: Pay VAT only and direct to HM Revenue and Customs.
The rules change if you import a second-hand vehicle. In this case, Value Added Tax would not be liable providing all these apply:
- The VAT portion got paid already in any of the EU countries (including the United Kingdom).
- The imported vehicle has been in use for more than six (6) months.
- The imported vehicle has registered more that 6,000km (approximately 3,728 miles).
Direct Payment to HM Revenue and Customs
You can use online or telephone banking to make a payment to HMRC by Faster Payments, Bacs, or by CHAPS.
Sort Code: 08 32 00
Account Number: 12000903
Account Name: HMRC Indirect Miscellaneous
You should use the 13-character NOVA notification reference number when you pay HMRC. You will find the number written on:
- The email sent to you by HMRC if you used the NOVA service.
- The payment notice sent to you by HM Revenue and Customs.
Note: Do not enter any spaces between each of the 13 characters in the reference number.
Reclaiming VAT on Imported Vehicles
As a rule, you can reclaim the VAT part that got paid in another EU country. You will need to send the Certificate of VAT received from HMRC to the person who sold the vehicle to you.
Vehicle Imports from Outside the EU
- Vehicles imported because you are moving to the UK with it: No VAT or duty is due if you qualify for relief.
- You are returning an exported vehicle to the United Kingdom: No VAT or duty is due if you qualify for relief.
- You are visiting the EU with your vehicle: No VAT or duty is due if it qualifies as a temporary import.
- Importing vehicles for any other reason (not VAT registered): VAT and duty is due and payable to customs at the UK border. The shipping company may arrange this for you.
- Importing vehicles for any other reason (VAT registered): VAT and duty is due and payable to customs at the UK border. The shipping company may arrange this for you. You can claim the VAT on your next VAT Return.
Note: Any VAT and duty owing must get paid before customs will release the vehicle and before you can register it.