Importing goods, duties and VAT
This is something lots of small businesses are getting into and it can be a minefield, this will give you an idea of what to look for.
You have the name of your product, you will need the Harmonized tariff code to be able to work out the duties due on the product, you need to know what the product is made from as there are different duties for different products an example is 2 identical pairs of shoes one has nylon laces and the other has leather laces, these are classed as different products and as such the code would be different well the last 4 digits, an example of a tariff code 8301.00.00.
You are charged Duty and Vat on the value of the goods and shipping as a whole, the rate at which you are charged is all dependant on the Harmonized tariff code used by the shipper, this determines the amount of duty to be paid, the easier it is to obtain the product in the country that you are importing into the higher the duty rate…….there as US are unable to produce silk of any quality themselves you will find importing Silk into US is duty free but cotton is high duty.
Have a look at this handy calculator for determining your duties based on your harmonized tariff code.
You will often find that when you import the goods the carrier or forwarder will charge you for the use of their deferment account or a disbursement fee.
A Deferment Account:
If you’re a regular importer, it’s possible to defer paying import duty and import VAT by setting up an account with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). The advantage of this is that you can put off payment by an average of 30 days and your goods will normally be cleared for release more quickly follow this link for more detailed explanation.