Buying online from Europe

  Why wont it work 14:00 11 Dec 10
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I need a replacement part for my pc which I have only been able to find for sale in Germany, from a company which is happy to ship to the UK. It's a proprietary heatsink, so I am unconcerned about possible warranty problems as there isn't really anything to go wrong (it's just a lump of metal).

What I'm confused about is VAT. If the price has already included the German equivalent of VAT (at 19%) will I have to pay it again when it enters the UK? I've looked at the HMRC website but I'm still not sure.

Thanks in advance!

  natdoor 14:16 11 Dec 10

I believe there is no VAT or any other duty to pay.

"Importing from within the EU / EU Harmonised Import Tariff

The EU countries have a common harmonised import tariff - the TARIC. The UK import regulations outlined below are equally valid for all member states of the European Union. Furthermore, if you are importing into the UK from another EU country (or between any two EU countries) there is no duty to pay. The TARIC rates are set every year and published in each country - the UK version consists of 21 sections, 97 chapters and 14,000 sub classifications. As a result, this article can only give broad guidelines and comes with the proviso attached that any information given is for guidance only and should be verified with HMRC (HM Revenue & Customs) before being relied on". Taken from click here.

  spuds 17:50 11 Dec 10

natdoor as already covered the vat implication.

Would mention that I have a number of items, usually on a monthly basis from the EU, Asia regions and the USA. Never had any problems with extra payments, but I put this down to the correct procedures and declaration used by the retailers. If the items are stopped at Mount Pleasant or other depots, then this can be a right pain, especially with added fees.

With regards to warranty, the UK/EU now have agreements with other EU countries and consumer laws. If the item is faulty, then your local trading standards or Consumer Direct should be able to advice. You may need to contact the retailers consumer affairs section in the country of purchase, but TS or CD would tell you this.

A further point to consider is the fact that certain electrical/electronic items have restrictions regarding export and import. USA are very strict on this. Your heatsink should be no problem, unless it rings alarm bells!.

  morddwyd 21:23 11 Dec 10

A lot of Amazon's stuff is shipped from Germany.

Normal retail sales are not liable for VAT

  Why wont it work 11:13 12 Dec 10

Thank you very much all! I was concerned I'd have to pay VAT on top, that would have taken it from an economical repair to 'just put it on the scrap heap'. Many thanks again.

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