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Customs clearance

We can help with navigating the complicated world of customs clearance on your behalf to ensure no issues importing your car to the UK.

Our team of customs agents are here to help with the entire process.

We can help with the customs process when importing your car to the UK

Customs Paperwork

We handle all of the paperwork on your behalf to ensure your car passes through customs without an issue.

Tax calculations

We ensure that you pay the correct tax when importing your car and don't incur any additional fees at customs.

Private or personal imports

We handle a variety of scenarios ranging from private imports through to transferring residents and can advise on all importations.

Dedicated support team

We are here throughout the process of importing your car so you don't have to deal with a plethora of companies throughout the process.

Is your car from the EU?

If you’re bringing a second-hand car into the UK from within the EU then you will have to pay VAT unless you are bringing the car into the United Kingdom under the ToR scheme. You won’t have to pay any duties, and for cars, over thirty years old the VAT element is reduced to 5%.

What about brexit?

Prior to Brexit, there was a free movement of goods, but this is not applicable as the United Kingdom has now left the European Union as of January 2021. This means that any arriving cars are subject to the tax laws that excluded EU.

What is the ToR scheme?

If you are moving to the UK and want to bring your car with you then you don’t have to pay any import duty or VAT. If you are unsure if you qualify for ToR relief don’t hesitate to get a quote and we’ll provide you with more information.

What about cars from outside of the EU?

If you import a car from outside of the European Union (EU) that was also built outside the EU you will be required to pay 10% import duty and 20% VAT in order to release it from UK customs. This is calculated on the amount you have purchased the car for in the country you are importing it from.

What is Notification of Vehicle Arrival (NOVA)?

As of April 15th 2013 the rules changed on how we are expected to notify HMRC of cars arriving into the UK from within the EU. My Car Import attended all the stakeholder meetings and even helped HMRC test the new system prior to it going live.

We have an online portal where we can make your NOVA notification directly to HMRC on your behalf. The NOVA system links directly to the DVLA so if you haven’t completed the notification the DVLA will reject your new registration application.

Frequently asked Questions

How soon do you have to declare a car after it arrives in the United Kingdom with HMRC Nova?

If you are wanting to import your car then you can do it by yourself. However, we do offer a service to manage this for you.

The DVLA provides this advice on their import guide:

If you are bringing a car permanently into the UK from abroad you must do the following:

  • Provide HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) with the car’s details within 14 days of its arrival pay any VAT due as part of this process before DVLA can register it.
  • After notifying HMRC about the car you must register, tax and insure it before using it on the road. A UK resident must not drive a car displaying foreign registration number plates
    in the UK.

So there you have it, fourteen days to get the NOVA sorted.

Your NOVA is important as without it you can’t get your car registered.

Some of the problem you might have is getting a valuation for your car so that it can be registered.

After the recent changes in our position in the European Union there is even more evidence required to bring your car in, and this in turn could make your NOVA trickier.

We always encourage that if you want to try it yourself, then do so.

But we can take the headache away before it begins as it is a minefield.

What is a customs clearance agent?

A UK customs clearance agent, also known as a customs broker or customs agent, is a professional or company that specialise in facilitating the clearance of goods through customs when they enter or exit the United Kingdom. They act as intermediaries between individuals or businesses importing or exporting goods and the customs authorities.

The role of a UK customs clearance agent involves several important tasks:

Documentation and Paperwork:

Customs clearance agents are responsible for ensuring that all necessary documents and paperwork are properly prepared and submitted to the customs authorities. This includes customs declarations, invoices, packing lists, certificates of origin, and any other required documentation.

Compliance and Regulations: Customs clearance agents have extensive knowledge of customs regulations, tariffs, and trade policies. They assist their clients in ensuring compliance with these regulations and help navigate any specific requirements related to the type of goods being imported or exported.

Customs Declarations:

Customs clearance agents prepare and submit customs declarations on behalf of their clients. These declarations provide details about the goods being imported or exported, including their value, quantity, classification, and country of origin. Accurate and timely declaration submissions are essential to facilitate smooth customs clearance.

Duties and Taxes:

Customs clearance agents calculate and advise their clients on the applicable duties, taxes, and fees associated with the imported or exported goods. They help ensure that the correct amounts are paid and assist in any necessary payment arrangements.

Customs Communication and Coordination:

Agents act as a liaison between their clients and the customs authorities, facilitating communication and addressing any queries or requests from customs officials. They help resolve any issues that may arise during the customs clearance process.

Freight and Transportation Coordination:

In some cases, customs clearance agents may also coordinate the transportation and logistics of goods, including arranging for freight forwarding, shipping, and delivery to the intended destination.

By using the services of a customs clearance agent, individuals and businesses can navigate the complexities of customs procedures more efficiently and ensure compliance with the relevant regulations. Customs clearance agents bring expertise, experience, and a thorough understanding of customs processes, enabling smoother and faster movement of goods across international borders.

My Car Import acts as your customs clearance agent during the process of importing your car to the United Kingdom.

Can we help with your NOVA

Absolutely. Importing a car into the UK can be a complex and time-consuming process, with various requirements to meet and paperwork to navigate. We can help with any issues you might have with getting a NOVA for your car.

If you are importing your car with us we will take care of the process for you. We stay up-to-date with the latest regulations and changes, saving you time and effort.

Our team takes care of submitting your NOVA application to the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) on your behalf. We ensure that all the necessary information is correctly entered, and the application is submitted within the specified timelines, avoiding delays or potential issues.

Our experts ensure that you adhere to the applicable laws, including tax and duty obligations, car valuations, and other requirements.

Throughout the NOVA process, we provide dedicated support, promptly addressing any queries or concerns you may have. Our team is here to assist you and keep you informed about the progress of your application.

Why is it important to have a customs clearance agent when importing your car to the United Kingdom?

Importing a car into the United Kingdom (UK) involves a complex process that requires adherence to various legal, regulatory, and administrative requirements. Hiring a customs clearance agent can be important for several reasons:

Regulatory Compliance: Importing a car involves complying with numerous regulations, including those related to customs duties, taxes, safety standards, emissions, and more. A customs clearance agent is well-versed in these regulations and can help ensure that your car meets all the necessary requirements.

Documentation: Importing a car requires a significant amount of documentation, such as import licenses, certificates of conformity, registration documents, invoices, and more. A customs clearance agent can assist in preparing and submitting accurate documentation, reducing the risk of delays or issues with the import process.

Customs Procedures: Customs procedures can be complex and time-consuming. A customs clearance agent understands the customs clearance process, including filing the necessary paperwork, paying the applicable duties and taxes, and navigating potential inspections.

Cost Efficiency: Mistakes or delays in the import process can lead to additional costs, including storage fees, demurrage charges, and penalties. A customs clearance agent can help you avoid these costs by ensuring a smooth and efficient import process.

Time Savings: Importing a car can be a time-intensive process, especially if you’re not familiar with the procedures and paperwork. Hiring a customs clearance agent can save you time and effort, allowing you to focus on other important matters.

Expertise: Customs clearance agents have experience and expertise in the field of international trade and customs regulations. Their knowledge can be invaluable in navigating any complexities, changes in regulations, or unexpected issues that may arise during the import process.

Risk Mitigation: Importing a car involves various risks, including potential customs disputes, incorrect valuation, and non-compliance with regulations. A customs clearance agent can help mitigate these risks by ensuring that your import is carried out in accordance with the law.

Smooth Process: Having a customs clearance agent by your side can lead to a smoother overall import process. They can coordinate with shipping companies, government agencies, and other relevant parties to streamline the process and avoid unnecessary hiccups.

It’s important to note that while hiring a customs clearance agent can provide significant benefits, it’s also essential to choose a reputable and experienced agent. Make sure to do your research and select an agent who has a track record of successfully assisting with car imports into the UK.


What is a customs broker?

A customs broker, also known as a customs clearance agent or customs consultant, is a professional or a company that specializes in facilitating the import and export of goods across international borders. Their primary role is to assist individuals and businesses in complying with customs regulations, documentation requirements, and other legal and administrative aspects of international trade.

Here are some key functions and responsibilities of a customs broker:

Documentation Preparation: Customs brokers help prepare and submit the necessary documentation required for importing or exporting goods. This includes customs declarations, certificates of origin, shipping invoices, bills of lading, and more.

Customs Clearance: Customs brokers are well-versed in the customs clearance process and work with customs authorities to ensure that goods are cleared through customs smoothly. They handle the submission of accurate and complete customs declarations, ensuring that all required duties, taxes, and fees are paid correctly.

Regulatory Compliance: Importing and exporting goods involves adhering to various regulations, tariffs, quotas, and trade agreements. Customs brokers have in-depth knowledge of these regulations and help their clients navigate complex customs laws to ensure compliance.

Tariff Classification: Customs brokers determine the correct classification of goods according to the Harmonized System (HS) code, which is used to determine the applicable tariffs and duties.

Valuation Assistance: Customs brokers help accurately value imported goods, ensuring that the correct value is declared for customs purposes. This helps prevent issues related to under- or over-valuation.

Communication with Authorities: Customs brokers serve as intermediaries between importers/exporters and customs authorities. They handle communications with relevant government agencies, answer queries, and address any issues that may arise during the import/export process.

Risk Management: Customs brokers help mitigate risks associated with customs disputes, fines, penalties, and delays. Their expertise helps ensure that goods are cleared through customs without unnecessary delays or complications.

Freight Coordination: In addition to customs-related tasks, some customs brokers also assist with coordinating freight services, such as arranging transportation and working with shipping companies.

Industry Knowledge: Customs brokers stay updated with changes in trade regulations, tariff rates, and customs procedures. This knowledge helps their clients navigate any changes and make informed decisions.

It’s important to choose a reputable and experienced customs broker who is licensed or authorized by the relevant customs authorities. Working with a professional customs broker can save importers and exporters time, money, and effort, and it can contribute to the overall success of their international trade activities.




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