16 July 2024, 21:00
By ALS Customs Services Feb 04, 2022

Customs compliance in the furniture industry

The ever-changing world of customs is becoming problematic for many businesses within the furniture industry – but, by taking a few simple steps, it’s possible to keep moving forward, writes ALS Customs Services …

With the provision of irregular updates, and the UK Border Operating Model creating more questions than answers, there’s plenty of room for confusion. Sometimes, questions around customes compliance – Do my products need licences? What are the new changes to imports this year? And, is my business customs compliant?  – are still not even being asked.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. First, make sure your business has a GB EORI in place – it’ll need one to trade in this new world. But what else should be taken into consideration?

Commercial invoice

Having a well laid-out and detailed commercial invoice can save your business time, and even money. Yes, you read that correctly – you’d be surprised by the amount of time wasted on amending invoices, getting clarification, and even the wrong Incoterms being stated. 

Is your invoice clearly laid out? Can the importer be easily identified? Is there a different delivery address to the importer’s address? Does your invoice have the newly updated HS codes on it?

Knowing which Incoterms you’re selling or buying your goods under can make a huge impact to your liability and costs. Do you fully understand your responsibility under your current Incoterms? 

VAT and duty

For many businesses, cashflow is key, and paying out unnecessarily for costs can have a huge impact – one of these costs being import VAT on your goods. 

Are you aware there are measures in place where you can defer your VAT payments if you meet certain criteria? Now, in many cases this would require your business having a bound payment with HMRC. However, ALS Customs Services can offer you use of their deferment account to help support with your cash flow. 

Not only this, but knowing the origin of your goods and being able to prove their origin could also save your business the outlay of duty being paid out. 

With a trade agreement set out between the UK and the EU, in a lot of circumstances where the origin of the goods can be proven to be within the EU, import duty can, in many cases, not be charged. Knowing how to prove the origin of the goods is vital, and having a broker on board to support you to do this is key.

Partnership with a broker

Keeping your business trading and moving is paramount, so don’t let the world of customs slow you down! The customs regulations are changing throughout 2022 – delayed import declarations will no longer be allowed, all import declarations must be done prior to your goods arriving at the UK border, GVMS is now in place, and keeping track of all your documents to ensure you are customs compliant is more important than ever.

Working with ALS Customs Services removes the pain of customs from your business, allowing you to focus on growing. We specialise in this industry, helping businesses to import and export their furniture all over the world. We are on hand to offer advice, inform you of any changes that will directly affect your business, help you complete your declarations, and we keep a copy of your documents for 10 years. Our pan-European coverage means we can help you remove the barriers and get your business trading across the world. 

To find out how ALS Customs Services can help with any of the above issues and support your business, contact [email protected], or call +44 (0)7542 862746.

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