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Paying VAT Duty on US car bought through UK

  • 08-05-2020 11:48am
    Registered Users Posts: 2

    Hi ,

    I bought a 1960s project car a couple of years ago from a guy in the UK. He had brought it in from the US hoping to restore it but never got around to it. I got a guy with a car transporter to bring it in from the UK.
    I've been working on it since and it's getting close to the point where it will be roadworthy and I can get it to the NCT and pay the VRT.
    The UK seller is no longer contactable and I have nothing to show that the VAT and Duty were paid. To be honest, I suspect now that if it had cleared EU VAT, he would have given me the evidence. As it happens, the car doesn't have registration papers, but the VIN is tracecable to show clearly that the car was manufactured in the sixties.

    So, I have a non-EU car that I need to pay VAT / Duty on. How can I go about it?

    One option is to just call Revenue and give them the details and pay the VAT+Duty based on the price I paid plus shipping. I'm fine doing that if it's acceptable.

    Has anyone been in this situation?
    Is there a different way to do it? Would it be worthwhile to talk to a customs agent or similar?

    Any help appreciated here or by DM


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,102 ✭✭✭hi5

    Usually they won't let any vehicle out of the docks unless EU duty and VAT are paid.
    You will have to get a letter from the manufacture verifing the VIN, a local club letter verifing it, a sworn statement signed by a commisioner of oaths and then apply for a tax book.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,796 ✭✭✭Isambard

    if the car is already in the Country and has no papers, how are you to know it came from the USA originally? I think I'd be tempted to say I bought it in the UK and have no idea of it's history and see where that goes. I assume it's LHD, is it very obviously American?

  • Registered Users Posts: 944 ✭✭✭mountai

    If the car was manufactured in UK and exported to USA originally , it is not subject to VAT or import tax on re importing to UK, AFAIK .

  • Registered Users Posts: 2 RolandGreen

    Hi All,

    Thanks for the advice so far. To answer some of your questions:

    - Car is now in Ireland
    - I contacted the manufacturer with the VIN. They confirmed tha the car was manufactured in Europe and supplied new to a user in the US. I've been told that this means that VAT is payable on bringing it back into the EU. I'd obviously need to use this letter from the manufacturer, so I couldn't claim that the car was a UK supplied one, I think.
    - I know that a car wouldn't be released from the dock without paying vat / duty, but I believe some people bring in containers of "car parts" where some complete but not roadworthy cars are included.

    So, I dont think I have an option other than to pay VAT / duty in either Ireland or UK and I have no issue with that.
    My question is should I just ring the Irish Revenue or is there a risk that there will be hassle for having brought it in from the UK. Alternatively, is there anyone in the import trade who I could pay to handle the issue?

    Thanks in advance for any help...

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,907 ✭✭✭✭Esel

    I think it works out a fair bit cheaper if it's registered in the UK first. They don't charge anything like here for non-EU imports, then it becomes a 'UK import' here.

    You could have an issue if you don't have a date of first registration as regards determining its age to get the Vintage VRT, maybe one of our VRT experts could clarify.

    Not your ornery onager

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  • Registered Users Posts: 677 ✭✭✭Mitchomagic

    Have you checked with the DVLA to see if its on there books, afaik they won't issue a logbook until its mot'ed but duties must be paid before then and a form issued

    Also have you tried the the US DMV to see if they have any information on it