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  • FIRST POST
    • Mithy
    • By Mithy 16th Apr 18, 11:04 AM
    • 15Posts
    • 5Thanks
    Mithy
    Import duty and customs on own clothes (left behind on holidays)
    • #1
    • 16th Apr 18, 11:04 AM
    Import duty and customs on own clothes (left behind on holidays) 16th Apr 18 at 11:04 AM
    I live in the UK and visited my family in Australia a few weeks ago. When I was at the airport I realised I'd left some clothes in the wardrobe (1 x shirt, 1 x top, 1 x dress, 1 x jacket). My mum has posted them to me and they are now awaiting customs assessment. I'd be a bit unhappy if I had to pay customs and import duty on my own clothes, since I bought them in the UK and and all taxes were paid on them when I bought them. Can anyone advise if there is an exemption / appeal process on duties and taxes payable in this situation? Thanks lots.
Page 1
    • gingercordial
    • By gingercordial 16th Apr 18, 11:35 AM
    • 1,221 Posts
    • 1,281 Thanks
    gingercordial
    • #2
    • 16th Apr 18, 11:35 AM
    • #2
    • 16th Apr 18, 11:35 AM
    I live in the UK and visited my family in Australia a few weeks ago. When I was at the airport I realised I'd left some clothes in the wardrobe (1 x shirt, 1 x top, 1 x dress, 1 x jacket). My mum has posted them to me and they are now awaiting customs assessment. I'd be a bit unhappy if I had to pay customs and import duty on my own clothes, since I bought them in the UK and and all taxes were paid on them when I bought them. Can anyone advise if there is an exemption / appeal process on duties and taxes payable in this situation? Thanks lots.
    Originally posted by Mithy
    What did you ask your mother to declare on the customs form? If she said (correctly) something like "own clothes being returned" with a value of nil, there should be no tax. If she put the full value then you are likely to be taxed.

    There is an appeals process which requires filling out the form here - make sure you keep all the customs stickers on the package as you will need to send them in. However you will need to convince them that you are telling the truth especially if you no longer have receipts to prove where you bought those items. You will also not get the Royal Mail handling fee back as they have done the work they were supposed to and the appeal is between you and HMRC.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/vat-customs-dutyimport-vat-relating-to-imports-by-post-bor286
    • Mithy
    • By Mithy 16th Apr 18, 4:35 PM
    • 15 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    Mithy
    • #3
    • 16th Apr 18, 4:35 PM
    • #3
    • 16th Apr 18, 4:35 PM
    She couldn!!!8217;t write nil value, because otherwise if they were lost in the post the insurance would not cover them. The issue is not that the items have no value, it is that duties/tax were paid when the items were first purchased so should not be paid again.

    It looks as though the best option is to wait until I get them then appeal to HMRC. I am actually quite a detailed record-keeper so I probably have receipts for most of them . Thanks for the link above on what to do.

    Any suggestions on where I can find out processing time estimates? I realise it varies, but a rough idea (week, month, ...) would be useful.
    • sheramber
    • By sheramber 16th Apr 18, 8:34 PM
    • 5,213 Posts
    • 3,891 Thanks
    sheramber
    • #4
    • 16th Apr 18, 8:34 PM
    • #4
    • 16th Apr 18, 8:34 PM
    https://www.gov.uk/goods-sent-from-abroad

    You don!!!8217;t pay VAT or Customs Duty when your things are sent back to you !!!8211; they must be described as !!!8216;personal belongings!!!8217; on the customs declaration.
    • Mithy
    • By Mithy 24th Apr 18, 4:25 PM
    • 15 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    Mithy
    • #5
    • 24th Apr 18, 4:25 PM
    • #5
    • 24th Apr 18, 4:25 PM
    Good news - I have my package. I collected it in person from the Parcelforce depot - I didn't want to wait any longer and it was also unclear from their website where they would leave it if I wasn't at home (which I knew I wouldn't be).


    Now I need to appeal the charges. Has anyone done this and can give some tips?
    • Mithy
    • By Mithy 24th May 18, 1:40 PM
    • 15 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    Mithy
    • #6
    • 24th May 18, 1:40 PM
    Appeal successful
    • #6
    • 24th May 18, 1:40 PM
    An update for others who might read this thread... I appealed the charges and was successful. I've just received confirmation that a refund is on its way (for the customs and duties, not for the processing fee).

    When I appealed I sent the required documents e.g. appeal form, package label, etc etc. I also provided evidence that I owned the clothes including:
    1. Photos of the contents of the package (including the wrapping)
    2. Boarding passes showing I was in Australia immediately before the package was sent from Australia to the UK
    3. Evidence of prior ownership of each item e.g. receipts and photos of me wearing the clothes

    Hope this is useful for others.
    • hoc
    • By hoc 24th May 18, 9:21 PM
    • 264 Posts
    • 151 Thanks
    hoc
    • #7
    • 24th May 18, 9:21 PM
    • #7
    • 24th May 18, 9:21 PM
    A happy ending. Thanks for the update, hate it when OPs don't report back and close out.
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