1. Agree delivery terms
Delivery terms (Incoterms) need to be specified in customs declarations once the UK leaves the EU
These terms define the responsibility and liability for shipment of the goods, detailing the seller and buyer obligations and where the transfer of risk exists. Each of the 11 incoterms are presented as a three-letter acronym. The image below sets out each Incoterm at a high-level.
Click here for official guidance on Incoterms, which includes supports such as a tool for choosing the right incoterms for your goods and knowing how will Brexit affect Incoterms.
2. Plan the journey
Prepare the information for the journey
There are many different options depending on how you’ll move goods and what sector you’re in. This is where the information from the preparation stage will come into play. You’ll have decided by now who will transport your goods, yourself or an agent. If it’s an agent, the most basic pieces of information need include:
- Collection date and time
- Collection address
- Delivery address
- Details of the consignment (parcel, pallet full load, etc.)
- Value of shipment
- Other important information (goods and sector-specific information)
Can you apply customs procedures?
You should know if you can apply customs procedures, for example, transitional simplified procedure, customs warehousing, inward and outward processing and transit. Some of these facilitations will specify special arrangements that you’ll need to take into account for planning your journey. For example, for agri-goods you may need to plan for a physical inspection and take into account the impact this will have on driving hours and required breaks etc.
3. Complete customs declarations
Complete declaration prior to arrival
This is when you’ll use information detailed in the preparation stage for the customs declarations. At this stage you will actually complete the documents, by now you should know who is doing them, if you are using customs procedures etc.
If an agent is working on your behalf, you need to provide them with this required information.
If you are completing your own customs declarations you need to be aware of timings, typically a customs declaration to be made at least 1 hour before (24 hours for agri products) the arrival at the place for which the customs office of first entry is competent. You’ll also need to know if you need supporting documents. These supporting documents will depend on the types of good, some examples are health certificates or certificates of origin.