With no certainty of how the UK will leave the EU on 29thMarch 2019, you may be wondering how you will be affected should we leave with no deal. Some noticeable changes that will be made include Importing and Exporting between the EU and the UK, Travelling to EU countries and the GeneralData Protection Regulation. As a result of these probable changes, there are a few things that will need to be done in preparation, but don’t panic! We knowyou may have some questions, so, we will guide you through each step.

Trading in the UK if there is a no deal Brexit

As you may already know; the current procedure for Trading with the EU is that businesses can move goods freely between EU and MemberStates without customs having to make any import or export declarations or pay any tariffs. However, this may all be about to change. We all have so many questions about ‘the big day’ March 29th 2019 and where Traders in Britain will stand thereafter. We have answered what we feel are the most important ones at this stage below.

In the Case of a no deal Brexit, how will Customs and Excise be dealt with?

As many of us are wondering, what does a no deal Brexit truly mean for trade? Well, one thing that is clear is that should this be the outcome; it would also mean that there would be a ‘no trade deal’ with the EU.This means that Britain would then become subject to the same trade rules as other countries outside of the EU. Also known as ‘World Trade Organisation(WTO) rules. 

If Britain should trade under the WTO rules, then customs and regulatory checks would be applied immediately. It is also important to mention that as well as checks,import duty will instantly be applied to all goods imported and even some exported meaning that both the EU and the UK would have to pay this tariff on each other’s goods. Under the WTO agreements this is known as the ‘Most Favoured Nation’ (MFN) rule which promotes treating other people equally. It means that ‘countries cannot discriminate between their trading partners. If someone is granted a special favour (such as lower customsduty) then you must do the same for all other WTO members. Therefore, in the case of a no deal Brexit, although Britain has had a long-standing relationship with the EU previously, this cannot be taken in to consideration once we fall under the World Trade Organisation.

I currently Import and/or Export, what do I do now?

Under a no deal Brexit all businesses importing and/or exporting goods between the EU and the UK will need to make import and export declarations for any movements after 11pm on 29th March 2019.Although there has been no decision made as of yet, you should continue to get ready for the possibility of no deal. With that being said; there are 5 actions which should be taken immediately.Don’t panic! We have listed these 5 actions below;

  1. Any business importing and/or exporting goods will need to register for a UK Economic Operator Registration andIdentification (EORI) number. You can register for your EORI at www.gov.uk/hmrc/get-eori.If the UK leaves the EU with no deal, you will not be able to continue to import or export goods to/from the EU after 29th March 2018 without an EORI number.
  2. In line with the Import/Export declarations mentioned above, you will need to decide if you would like to either hire an agent to make all import and/or export declarations for you or if you want to make these declarations yourself.
  3. To declare through an agent, you will need to contact one to discuss the procedure and find out what information is required from you.
  4. If you are confident enough to make declarations yourself, you will need to contact a software provider to make sure that their product meets either your importing or exporting needs. Or maybe both if required.
  5. You will need to contact the organisation that moves your goods and supply any additional information needed for them to be able to make the safety and security declarations for your goods.

What are the Costs and Effects on Smaller Businesses?

After Brexit, small businesses in the UK will be expected to pay VAT upfront on all goods imported from the EU. This means that on top of the cost of the product itself, there will be an extra duty tax and VAT cost.For start-up and smaller businesses, it may be more cost-effective to seek new suppliers from within the UK for frictionless trade and lower costing goods.

Travelling to the EU if there is a no deal Brexit

Currently if you are a British Citizen as an EU National and have a valid British Passport, then you are able to travel to and from the Schengen areas without being subject to any passport checks and border controls. There is currently no requirement for British Passport Holders to have a minimum or maximum validity period when entering or leaving any Schengenarea. To view the Schengen areas please visit https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/sites/homeaffairs/files/e-library/docs/schengen_brochure/schengen_brochure_dr3111126_en.pdf.

What does it mean to travel to and from the EU as a British Passport Holder if there is no deal?

If the UK leaves the EU with no deal then all British Passport holders will be considered a third country national and will therefore need to comply with passport checks and border controls to travel to and from the Schengen areas. Your British passport will be expected to meet certain criteria’s including a minimum validity period to allow you to enter any of the Schengen Countries. If these criteria’s are not met, you may be denied entry.

According to the Schengen Country Code, third-country passports must;

  • Have been issued within the last 10 years on the date of arrival in a Schengen country,and
  • Have atleast 3 months’ validity remaining on the date of intended departure from the last country visited in the Schengen area. Because third country nationals can remain in the Schengen area for 90 days (approximately 3 months), the actual check carried out could be that the passport has at least 6 months validity remaining on the date of arrival.

Does a no deal Brexit mean that I will now have to apply for a Visa to travel to the EU?

Many of us have great concerns about what travelling to the EU will look like after Brexit. The European Commission has now confirmed that UK Travellers will not need to apply for a visa to travel to the EU, however,they will need to apply for and buy a European Travel Information andAuthorisation System (ETIAS) document. This is expected to come in to force in2021 after the end of the transition period in 2020. Panic over then!

What is an ETIAS and what is the cost?

The ETIAS is an electronic application form, which isEurope’s version of the US’ ESTA. Although it is not a Travel Visa it is a required Travel Document which you will need to apply online for and pay €7 if you wish to travel to the EU after 2020.

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) if there is no deal?

GDPR which came in to effect on 25th March 2018is a new set of rules designed to give EU Citizens more control over their personal data. Currently under the terms of GDPR organisations have to ensure that data is gathered legally and under strict conditions. Also, ensuring that those who collect and manage it are obliged to protect it from misuse and exploitation and respect the rights of data owners. Failure to do so could result in penalties.

Does GDPR still stand if there is a no deal Brexit?

Although there will be no immediate change in the UK’s own data protection standards, should we leave the EU with no deal then the legal framework governing transfers of personal data from organisations established in the EU to organisations established in the UK would change on exit.

What do I do if I will require information from the EU in the case of no deal?

If you would like to receive personal data from organisations established in the EU after 29th March and the EUCommission has not yet made an adequacy decision regarding the UK, then you should consider assisting your EU Partners in identifying a legal basis for those transfers.

How do I deal with data of European Citizens?

In the scenario of a no deal the UK will operate under the Data Protection Act 2018. Although GDPR technically won’t affect British Citizens in the same way, the DPA 2018 is a tweaked version of GDPR. This means that all the same principles and guidelines will still apply. It is important to understand that Brexit does not give organisations a way out on the Data Protection Rules, especially those who will continue to hold the personal data of EU Citizens moving forward.

There will be many changes to VAT rules when importing from or exporting products and services to the EU. Please read our article published in September 2018 for a detailed explanation of these changes

Big Changes for 2019

It is fair to say that there will be many changes for the UK arising in 2019. Many of these changes will be surrounded around Brexit whether Britain leaves the EU with or without a deal. We have addressed some changes that may arise as well as preparations that should be taken to prepare for the event of a no deal outcome. We strongly advise that the necessary steps and preparations are taken to ensure a stress free and as smooth as possible transition after 29th March 2019. However, at the time of writing,it is not yet known what the final relationship between the EU and the UK will be.

We at Outsourced ACC are available to speak to our clients and guide them all year around. Our all inclusive fee means you dont have to worry about additional charges every time you call us or send an email. Contact us today by email or phone and see how we can help you grow!

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