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Pre 29 March 2019 - Brexit planning

By Sharon Cooke

At the time of writing, the UK is scheduled to leave the EU on 29 March 2019.

We are told that leaving the EU with a deal remains the Government’s top priority, however Government’s advice is that businesses should continue to plan for every possible outcome including no deal.

In December 2018, HMRC wrote to VAT-registered businesses that trade only with the EU advising them to take 3 actions to prepare for a no deal EU Exit, including registering for a UK Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number. A hyperlink to this letter is shown on the gov.uk website here.

Businesses that only trade with the EU will need an EORI number:
• to continue to import or export goods with the EU after 29 March 2019, if the UK leaves the EU without a deal; and
• before they can apply for authorisations that will make customs processes easier.

There is guidance on obtaining an EORI number on the gov.uk website here and the application process will take approximately 10 minutes. 

Affected businesses should also decide if they want to hire an agent to make import and/or export declarations for them or make the declarations themselves.

Businesses can find further guidance on customs declarations on the gov.uk website here. HMRC have also published a new ‘Prepare your business for the UK leaving the EU’ tool available here.


January 2019 


This article is published with the understanding that SWAT UK Limited is not engaged in rendering legal or professional services. The material contained in this article neither purports, nor is intended to be, advice on any particular matter. This article is an aid and cannot be expected to replace professional judgment. SWAT UK accepts no responsibility or liability to any person in respect of anything done or omitted to be done by any such person in reliance, whether sole or partial, upon the whole or any part of the contents of this article.