TNT (delivery firm) & HM Customs advice...

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by armourer, Jun 8, 2005.

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  1. I took delivery last week, from TNT, a package sent to me from Hong Kong. It had not been opened by HM Customs and there was no additional paperwork to say I had any charges or VAT/Duty to pay.

    Today I receive an invoice from TNT for £15 VAT and £17 TNT admin fees.

    I rang TNT and asked how they had come to the VAT total as they hadn't opened the package or read the customs declaration as some of the items weere VAT exempt and thus the amount charged is incorrect.

    I also asked why they were collecting Duty on packages.

    The upshot is the guy at TNT said there had been a mistake in this case and I need not pay any VAT/Duty or admin charges.

    Have TNT tried to rip me off ?

    Can TNT charge VAT/Duty like this, without it seems any input, from HM Customs ?
     
  2. I had a simelar request from the Royal Mail. I recieved a parcel from the U.S. which contained a gift from my wife's mother. The postman wanted to charge VAT based on the estimated value which the mother in law had written on the customs declaration. I refused on the grounds that this was a gift not merchandise and that I had not purchased it myself so shouldn't need to pay tax on it of any kind either in the US or the UK. he said I would have to hand the parcell back over to him. I told him to fcuk off. this was six months ago. I have heard nothing about it since.
     
  3. I bought a guitar from America and got it shipped over by fedex. It was only a cheapy thing but they had the item value written on the box so they worked it out from that.

    Thought i got away with paying any tax for about 3 months as no one mentioned anything when suddenly a letter comes from sovereign solicitors demanding £40 in tax otherwise i would be blacklisted for all sorts.
     
  4. Yes but the US customs stickers always have a value - in case the package is damaged or lost (US postal service is much more efficient than the chavs that bring our mail and thay take things like mail going missing very seriously.) Even if you send a Gift from the states you are asked to put an approximate value on it for this purpose.

    Without quizzing you or the sender or opening the package how are they able to tell that VAT is due on the item?
     
  5. What don't we pay VAT on these days?
     
  6. Food
    Books and Booklets including newspapers and journals
    Public transport
    Goods exported outside the European Union
    Certain goods and services supplied to Charities
    Education
    Financial services
    Health and welfare services
    Insurance
     
  7. Really limits the contents of the package to books then, doe it not?

    Not that I'm disagreeing with any of the points raised, just that on the balance of probability and unless the customs sticker states "printed matter" you're likely to be VAT liable.
     
  8. Submarines
    Houseboats
    Jaffa cakes
    Encyclopaedias
    Funerals...


    No really!
     
  9. I presume you know Jaffa Cakes were created specifically to avoid being rated for VAT?
     
  10. Weren't Jaffa Cakes the subject of an eight-year legal battle over VAT?!

    What hacks me off is when Customs make an arbitrary charge on a parcel from overseas (often either ignoring an identical shipment, or inflating the chargeable value of the contents) and then you get presented with the PO "collection charge" of £8 on top. I recently had a £3 bit of wood sent from US (an antique part) and ended up having to shell out £16+ Duty & PO charge! Even if you appeal the Customs charge, there is no refund for the PO charge - a good example of rip-off Britain.....
     
  11. Used to be a fiddle where clearing agents watched what came up in the receipts hall and, if there were no agent appointed, they appointed themselves. Most prone in that company of three initial starting with a D and ending with an L. They dealt with the paperwork and added their costs. Without their intervention, imports mostly sailed through with no import tax or VAT. Not much can be done once they have hi=jacked the shipment.
     
  12. Many of us seem happy to wrap ourselves in the Union Flag (for example, when we're bashing asylum seekers), but when it comes to using British suppliers (ie putting our money where our mouth is), our 'true Brit' credentials start to wane.

    Sometimes, of course, it's only possible to source a specialist item from overseas (eg 4(T)'s bit of antique wood), but generally we have absolutely no qualms about trying to import tax-free goods, when we could just as easily buy the same thing at home.
     
  13. If a Brit supplier can supply what I want, in the size I want, at a price I like and with guarantees, I refuse to turn myself into some Robinson Crusoe just from loyality to the Flag. Quite likely anything I buy from so-called Brit company has 'made in China' on it. As a fat bstard, I regularly HAVE to make use of American suppliers.
     
  14. The international freight/courier industry is full of opportunists and chancers. You have to remember that back in the day, before the collapse of the red empire, courier firms were set up as cover operations by various western intelligence agencies. When the soviets limit the number of "military attaches" you can attach to your embassy, what better way to get your spooks in country. Many of these guys ran very successful businesses alongside their proper job. Their legacy is an industry that is rife with corruption and underhandedness.
     
  15. ORC

    I'm not suggesting British people should buy only British manufactured goods, only that they should, where possible, use UK suppliers. The reason Customs charge VAT on goods imported from outside the EU, is so that overseas suppliers cannot supply goods tax-free, thereby giving them an unfair trading advantage.