Brexit – HMRC guidance on preparing your business for the UK leaving the EU

18 January 2019

It is currently the government’s intention that the United Kingdom will leave the European Union on 29 March 2019. In December 2018, H M Revenue & Customs (HMRC) wrote to all VAT-registered businesses that trade only with the EU advising them to take action to prepare for a no deal EU exit.

Whilst leaving the EU with a deal remains the government’s top priority, their advice is that businesses should continue to plan for every possible outcome including no deal. HMRC has produced a “Prepare your business for the UK leaving the EU” tool that provides some guidance.  

One of the main actions advised by HMRC to prepare for a no deal EU Exit, is to register for a UK Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number.

This is because 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

If you currently import from outside the EU you may already have an EORI, however if you don’t have an EORI we can organise this for you for a nominal fee. 

An EORI will not affect your business in the event that a deal is agreed or if Brexit is postponed and therefore many businesses will be applying. We recommend not to wait until a potential rush in March 2019.

If you are interested in registering for an EORI, please get in touch with your usual contact or Ann Bibby at abibby@ellacotts.co.uk or 01295 250401.