Bringing vehicles into the UK from 15 April 2013

By Tolley
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The following Value Added Tax guidance note by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Bringing vehicles into the UK from 15 April 2013
  • Notification of Vehicle Arrivals (NOVA)
  • Information required to complete the notification
  • Making the notification
  • Late notifications
  • Paying VAT and import duty
  • Returned Goods Relief

This guidance note provides an overview of the revised procedure that must be used when vehicles enter the UK from overseas on or after 15 April 2013.

Notification of Vehicle Arrivals (NOVA)

VATA 1994, Sch 11, para 2(5A)–(5D), FA 2012, s 202; Value Added Tax (Amendment) Regulations 2013, SI 2013/701 (subscription sensitive); VAT information Sheet 6/2013 

Commercial importers of new vehicles that use a secure registration scheme  do not have to use the steps outlined below. This scheme is also not applicable for vehicles moving between the mainland UK and Northern Ireland.

If a person or business brings a new or used vehicle into the UK for permanent use on UK roads, any VAT due must be paid or accounted for to HMRC. The vehicle must then be registered / licensed via the DVLA or the Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) in Northern Ireland.

From 15 April 2013 the current system, called NOVA, was introduced to improve the process for notifying HMRC about the vehicle and for remitting any VAT due.

Detailed information on how the NOVA system operates can be found in the VAT information Sheet 6/2013 .

Notification procedure

Vehicles that are temporarily imported into the UK may not need to be notified to HMRC and see ‘Temporary imports’ below for more information.

These steps need to be followed by all persons importing goods into the UK who are not using the secure registration scheme referred to above. Persons who fail to follow these steps and use this vehicle on UK public roads could be prosecuted unless they are driving the vehicle to a pre-booked MOT test:

  • 1)notify HMRC
  • 2)pay import and customs duty (unless the vehicle is eligible

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