Post-Brexit VAT accounting legislation

New legislation has been laid before parliament in preparation for the UK’s exit from the EU. This takes the form of statutory instruments including 2019/59 and 2019/60.

The changes that these new Regulations will introduce will have effect once the Treasury brings them into force when the UK leaves the EU.


The commentary to the SI states that the Regulations are made to address failures of retained EU law to operate effectively, and other deficiencies arising from the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union.

The Regulations:

  • amend secondary legislation relating to VAT to reflect the fact that the United Kingdom will no longer be a member State of the EU and that EU member States are now treated in the same way as the rest of the world vis-à-vis the United Kingdom. Amendments are made as a consequence of the abolition of acquisition VAT and extension of import VAT to EU member States and to reflect the new definition of importation and other new terminology.
  • Amend the Value Added Tax (Payments on Account) Order take account of new accounting procedures for import VAT introduced 2019/60
  • revoke legislation relating to VAT which is inoperable as a result of the abolition of acquisition VAT by, and introduction of new customs procedures under, the Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018 (TCTA) . It also revokes legislation relating to VAT which is spent as a result of these revocations.


These Regulations  make provision in relation to accounting and payment for import VAT on the importation of goods by persons registered for VAT following the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union.

Among other things, the Regulations include provisions:

  • that will allow a person registered for VAT and liable to pay import VAT on relevant imported goods to have any such goods delivered or removed without payment of import VAT where that person accounts for the import VAT under the Regulations.
  • that provide that a person registered for VAT and choosing to account for import VAT under these Regulations may do so on the return that person is required to make for a prescribed accounting period.

CVC will be issuing a detailed commentary on these provision and other matters relating to Brexit planning in the next few days.