Brexit update from Sim Lab
What Brexit means for Sim Lab
As of the 1st of January 2021, the United Kingdom has left the European Union. As a result, there are some important changes that have taken place for our non UK based customers for orders moving forward. We have been working hard to ensure all of our Irish and European customers continue to receive the same great service we are proud to offer. We’ve put together some information following Brexit so you can keep up to date when placing new orders.
What plans we’ve put in place to help our customers
In terms of how Brexit may affect us, we have been proactive ensuring that we have the right shipping requirements for both the UK, EU & globally too. Our couriers are all operating with electronic customs processing which our staff and systems have been updated to comply with. This will include information on your order so customs department can categorise items correctly. This should ensure a smooth transition as the initial changes period settles down and keep delays to a minimum.
Will I pay VAT if my order is being shipped outside of the UK?
Any orders via SIMLAB that are being shipped outside of the UK will no longer be charged VAT at the checkout whether you are VAT registered or not. When the item arrives in its destination the VAT will be charged to the recipient by the local customs department based on the VAT rules of the destination country. This means that VAT will not be added at the time of purchase from SIM, but will instead be paid upon arrival in the destination country, so the final amount paid for the product will remain the same. Each customs department will have a processing admin charge which is usually a small fee and is again decided by your local customs department. VAT registered companies can then reclaim this VAT in the same way as you would usually claim VAT for any purchases made in their country.
If your item is being ordered from the UK or abroad but delivered to a UK address, VAT will be charged on the order as normal at the checkout where VAT applies. As shipping is a UK service even when leaving the UK, this remains a VAT chargeable service, so VAT will still be added to shipping at the checkout for all orders.
Shipping to Ireland
We currently send orders to Ireland via DPD which is a tracked courier service who charge VAT on the parcel contents based on the invoice, as well as a clearance fee of €6.05 inc VAT per consignment. Because of this processing charge plus the VAT, we are currently trialling sending smaller orders via Tracked Royal Mail instead. This service remains under review and we will update our website accordingly once trialling progresses. The delivery cost for both services remains the same at the checkout and orders may still be eligible for import duties via Royal Mail. This will only be possible on smaller sized prints with lower quantities, and will not be possible for any photo merchandise, fine art or mounted print products. The courier chosen for each order will be at the digression of SIMLAB and cannot be requested or changes. Any larger orders in boxes or larger than a small envelope will still be sent via DPD and the import fees will need to be paid by the recipient. For this reason we would recommend placing larger orders together on a less frequent basis, to avoid multiple fees if ordering more frequently in smaller increments.
Shipping to Europe and rest of the World
All print orders being sent outside of the UK will be sent with DPD or Parcelforce depending on the order contents and the destination country. These items may be subject to custom charges including VAT charges when entering the destination country so please ensure your contact details are correct on every order. Each customs department will have a processing admin charge which is usually a small fee and is again decided by your local customs department. VAT registered companies can then reclaim this VAT in the same way as you would usually claim VAT for any purchases made in their country.
How do I pay my custom fee?
If you are sending a parcel outside of the UK this may mean that you are liable for custom fees including final VAT on your product. VAT custom charges are the responsibility of the recipient or purchaser, SIMLAB will not be liable for any customs fees. If a custom fee is requested from border control you will be sent an email with a link to pay. It is essential that you double check all contact information on each order to ensure it is correct and you are reachable via these channels. If your local customs department is unable to contact you, the parcel will be returned to SIMLAB and the delivery fee will need to be paid again in order to re-ship the order. Orders placed without sufficient address or contact details will face serious delays. Orders will be sent from DPD or Parcelforce (GLS) depending on the product and destination country, so please keep an eye out for any emails or notifications from these couriers and remember to check your spam folders.
Do I need to provide any extra information for orders being shipped outside of the UK?
Yes, for SIMLAB orders being shipped outside of the UK, we would recommend including your EORI or VAT number in the order comments on each order if you have one as this will speed up the shipping process. It is not essential so do not worry if you do not have one.
Can items still be sent directly to my client if being shipped outside of the UK?
Commercial invoices are now a legal requirement for all products & parcels leaving the UK. This will be electronically formatted with the couriers as well as printed and attached to the parcel. Included in a commercial invoice are details of the product, materials and the costs. Given this, if you wish to conceal your pricing, we would recommend that you ship the parcel to your own address and forward onto your customer instead. This will avoid any unwanted information being included when shipping directly from SIM to your customer. Please be advised any orders being delivered within the UK will remain fully white label and will not include any invoice or details of the costs.