VAT-registered UK businesses that trade exclusively with the EU are being urged by HMRC to prepare for a no deal Brexit.

145,000 affected businesses received a letter from HMRC, detailing the changes to Customs, Excise and VAT procedures in the ‘unlikely event’ that the UK leaves the EU without a Brexit deal.

The letter advises businesses to take three actions ahead of ‘Brexit Day’ on 29 March 2019:

•             Register for a UK Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number.

•             Decide whether a customs agent will be used to make import and/or export declarations, or whether declarations will be made by the business via software.

•             Contact the organisation responsible for moving goods (for example, the haulage firm) in order to ascertain whether the business will need to supply additional information to complete safety and security declarations, or whether it will need to submit these declarations itself.

In a report published jointly by HMRC and the National Audit Office (NAO) recently revealed that almost 55 million customs declarations are currently made by British businesses each year. This figure could rise to 255 million when the UK leaves the UK.

HMRC intends to write to the affected businesses in the future with detail of any additional actions they will need to take and when.

Quote from Nigel Holland:

“I urge all businesses who may be affected by these changes to make preparations before the 29th of March as failing to do so could cause damage to many businesses across the UK.”