HMRC launches Trader Support Service

Oct 21, 2020

If you need help with customs and move goods between Great Britain and NI or bring goods into NI from outside the UK, the Trader Support Service might help.

The UK government launched its Trader Support Service (“TSS”) last month and is encouraging businesses to sign up to the service with just weeks to go until the end of EU transition period.

The service can be used by any business moving goods between GB and NI (and vice versa) or bringing goods into Northern Ireland from outside the UK. This Institute continues to engage with both Government and HMRC as 1 January 2021 approaches.

HMRC has also been writing to VAT-registered businesses in Northern Ireland highlighting actions they need to take to prepare for new processes for moving goods under the Northern Ireland Protocol from 1 January 2021.

According to HMRC, the benefits of the TSS are two-fold:- 

  • Traders who sign up to the Trader Support Service will be guided through the new processes under the Northern Ireland Protocol and can also use it to complete digital declarations to manage import and safety and security declarations on their behalf; and/or
  • The service will educate businesses on what the protocol means for them, and the steps they need to take to comply with it. This will include online training sessions and webinars, with information being continually updated as we move closer to 1 January 2021.

This means a business can choose to use the TSS in a way that suits it; either by using it to complete the relevant digital declarations and/or skill up on what the protocol means for their business.

The TSS will not provide a personalised service to individual traders normally offered by customs brokers.  More information can be found at this link.