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US company needs to register for VAT to sell

I believe I need to register for VAT to sell through Amazon UK + Import duty

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It is my understanding that I need to register for VAT to sell from Amazon UK. I am a USA based trader.  Which is fine I understand. 

But what I don't understand am I registering for VAT or registering for VAT to pay import duty on my products as they are imported into Amazon's Warehouse? 

Or are the two systems completely different and separate? 

Or is it just the case that Amazon will charge the 'import duty' and then bill me, in which case surely it is just a cost to me, and I could call is 'Pink banana charge' even though it is import duty it is just another cost to me? 

Very confused, or maybe just over thinking all this.  

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By paul.benny
27th Nov 2020 16:04

VAT and duty are different things but you still have to pay both when you bring goods into the UK. Duty varies according to the type of goods; for nearly all goods, VAT is a straightforward 20% of the declared value plus duty.

VAT operates very differently to US sales taxes. The wikipedia entry gives quite a good description of how value-added taxes operate.

You should also be aware that, unlike the US, consumer prices must be displayed inclusive of VAT.

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By wood1e1
03rd Dec 2020 11:43


Sorry for the delay in responding and thanks.


A) I need to register for VAT as I am selling through Amazon UK?

This is just the way it is!

And would this be the case if I didn't store my products in Amazon UK or Amazon Italy (obviously would be IVA then)

Or would I still need to charge VAT/Pay VAT if I sold through Amazon UK but delivered from the USA?

B) I will be charged Import duty by Amazon on behalf of HMRC?

If I deliver direct from the USA.?


Would I be charged Import Duty if I sold through Amazon UK? That is I would be charged Import Duty as the bulk load of product arrived at Amazon UK depot?

In this instance, Amazon would handle the import duty than just invoice me?


C) I would be charging VAT on all my product as I am selling through Amazon UK?

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Replying to wood1e1:
By paul.benny
03rd Dec 2020 16:49

The short answer is that VAT and duty have to be accounted for on the goods you supply into the UK, whatever route you use.

If you are bulk shipping into amazon warehousing, VAT and duty must be paid are released from customs. There are ways to defer this - I don't know whether they are available to businesses without a UK presence. Amazon or your shipper *may* arrange customs clearance for you. For a fee.

There used to be an exemption for low value goods shipped directly to customers from outside the UK. This is being withdrawn and your customers may find they have to pay the customs charges themselves. Not a recipe for happy customers.
Amazon and eBay

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By Matrix
03rd Dec 2020 12:01

Our clients use this firm so I would speak to them although there are also lots of articles on Amazon.

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