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Ok.

Can anybody fill me in on the rules? Who's done it and who's had to pay what and when??

I've seen a nice Cannondale frame on EBay. It's considerably cheaper than what I could get it for over here.

What I don't want is to be got by customs for VAT.

It's from a private seller. It's virtually new but would be classed as secondhand.

What do you think I would pay if I get clobbered? Frames's £600.

I've asked the seller to declare it as a gift with a value of €50 to try and escape it. He's gone quiet on me so I think all the emails about it are putting him off.

Would marking it as a sample work?

Be good to hear some direct experiences..

Ta..

17 comments

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pdf500 [26 posts] 2 years ago
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If you can afford to buy a new bike you can afford to pay the tax that you owe. Schools, hospitals, roads are paid for with that money. Everyone likes a bargain, but not paying any duties incurred is just stealing. I'm guessing you wouldn't usually steal something, let alone ask a forum how best to steal.

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MartyMcCann [246 posts] 2 years ago
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I do think that asking on a public forum about the best way to be a tax dodger isn't the most clever thing to be doing- and to backup what pdf500 says above-try and cheat the taxman if you want but don't then moan about the state of the roads...  39

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farrell [1950 posts] 2 years ago
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pdf500 wrote:

not paying any duties incurred is just stealing.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALZZx1xmAzg

I don't think the gift thing actually works though, I had a pair of Justin cowboy boots sent to me as a gift (Actually by someone I didn't know at that time but was impressed by my articles in a fanzine and was in response to an piece I had written. Not relevant to this in any way shape or form but it's the closest I've got to getting fan mail so any chance to dine out on it I'll take...). I collected the parcel from DHL with no mither but a few months later I got a slew of letters demanding money from me for import tax/duty what have you, each getting increasingly threatening. I moved house and have heard nowt since but I'd imagine moving house just to avoid import fees is a bit like taking a gun to knife fight.

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DanTe [190 posts] 2 years ago
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I should of expected a couple of sanctimonious replies like the first two.
Perhaps they have a point and perhaps they should voluntarily pay the VAT on all their Ebay purchases over.
I'm sure it dosn't work like that and I'm sure somebody will go to great pains to tell me so.
It's not a brand new frame, it's not from a dealer. It's secondhand from some bloke
Guess that dosn't matter.
Taxes, yes I pay those including everytime I pass wind. Road tax, yes that's a good one..

Anyway, what I was kind of looking for was a 'tough luck you'll have to pay it. I did and it was x---'

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jmaccelari [250 posts] 2 years ago
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If you import goods from the US, you pay VAT. Simple. I get nailed my 20% every time and include it in my estimate when I buy the goods. So I only buy from the US if it's more than 20% cheaper. Which it often is...  7

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pdf500 [26 posts] 2 years ago
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Sorry to be sanctimonious. I don't enjoy paying tax either.

Hope the frame is still good value after the tax and you enjoy your new bike.

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pdf500 [26 posts] 2 years ago
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Perhaps that was even more sanctimonious. Oh dear.

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Yorkshie Whippet [554 posts] 2 years ago
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If you do buy, ensure that import tax/VAT is paid before the frame is sent. I bought a cycle top from ebay a few months ago. Didn't mind and was quite happy paying the £3odd tax, it was the £8 surcharge that annoyed me.

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giff77 [1258 posts] 2 years ago
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As others have said. You pay the tax on anything imported into the country. On the flip side the vendor in the States will probably have had to include/declare Sales Tax on the frame. Your asking him to declare it as a gift would have been possibly compromised his values hence his silence. I'm sure the tax authorities in that States are as vigorous as those here in the UK

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allezrider [92 posts] 2 years ago
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Import duty on a bike frame is 4.7% with import VAT of 20%. Both are calculated on the total purchase price including shipping and insurance. So on the frame you're looking at an extra £150.

http://www.dutycalculator.com/popular-import-items/import-duty-and-taxes...

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joemmo [1164 posts] 2 years ago
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aside from the VAT, some couriers will also find a way to charge you an import fee or processing charge so check the t&cs. I bought a chainset from the US once, saved a little after tax but generally I don't think it's worth it. The price difference is not as wide as it used to be

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Neil753 [447 posts] 2 years ago
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Customs make no distinction between new or 2nd hand goods.
For goods up to £630, sent you you from the USA, you pay a flat 2.5%, but this is waived if the total duty comes to less than £9.
VAT is payable on not just the item, but the shipping and duty payable as well.
Admin charges apply if the money due has to be retrospectively collected, this also attracts VAT too.
Ebay have specific advice about all this, and make it easy to pay fees in advance.

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jacknorell [974 posts] 2 years ago
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giff77 wrote:

As others have said. You pay the tax on anything imported into the country. On the flip side the vendor in the States will probably have had to include/declare Sales Tax on the frame. Your asking him to declare it as a gift would have been possibly compromised his values hence his silence. I'm sure the tax authorities in that States are as vigorous as those here in the UK

Items sold internationally or across state lines in the US do not incur sales tax. That's only done on a state / city level.

The recipient is meant to pay the sales tax directly to the state department dealing with sales tax.

So, no, the seller wouldn't care about sales tax in this case. Any US seller including sales tax for an international sale is trying to rip you off.

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monty dog [460 posts] 2 years ago
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Put a low value on the customs declaration and the goods get damaged or lost, you'll only be insured for the stated value.

If customs believe you to be making a false declaration then they are entitled to charge you a penalty of 200% of the fees

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giff77 [1258 posts] 2 years ago
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jacknorell wrote:
giff77 wrote:

As others have said. You pay the tax on anything imported into the country. On the flip side the vendor in the States will probably have had to include/declare Sales Tax on the frame. Your asking him to declare it as a gift would have been possibly compromised his values hence his silence. I'm sure the tax authorities in that States are as vigorous as those here in the UK

Items sold internationally or across state lines in the US do not incur sales tax. That's only done on a state / city level.

The recipient is meant to pay the sales tax directly to the state department dealing with sales tax.

So, no, the seller wouldn't care about sales tax in this case. Any US seller including sales tax for an international sale is trying to rip you off.

Thanks for correcting me jack. One less thing for me to be ignorant about  1

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DanTe [190 posts] 2 years ago
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Thanks for all your comments and advice. I think I've got how it works now.

Its too much of a gamble for me, knowing my luck I'd get stung for the maximum possible amount.
A couple of sellers have gone stone cold on me, not surprised really. I should imagine it was my naive can't you just say it's worth $100 that did it.
I'm not sure I'd send something to the States that's worth £800 and insure it for 60.
Shame really as the second one was for a Focus Izalco frame and forks at a pretty decent price, not often you get the chance to go for that particular bike in frame and forks..
Anyways probably saved me a divorce..

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Richard GR [3 posts] 2 years ago
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