Goods re-imported into the European Union (Returned Goods Relief)

Updated on March 9, 2022


The European Union (EU) does not charge Customs Duty or Value Added Tax for re-imports of goods (VAT). These are the items:

Exports from the European Union are almost certainly to blame.

Parts and accessories from other goods that have been exported can be included.

Returned Goods Relief is the term for this.


Only if the original exporter is able to re-import the products may they be exempt from VAT.

General rules for duty relief on returned goods

Within three years of export, you must s new the items. This time frame can, however, be extended to cater for extraordinary cases.
You must re-import the products if they were previously imported via the end-use procedure. Using the commodities for a different purpose will result in duty being due. The sum paid when the products were originally introduced into the market will be deducted from the duty that would be levied.
Duties are due if you import goods that compensate for things that were initially exported through the inward processing procedure. Pay what you would have had to pay if you’d entered them into free circulation at the time you exported them.
Your re-imported products must be in the same condition as when they left your country of origin. No treatment or processing has occurred outside the United States. Exceptions to this rule include treatments required to restore or maintain the items’ good condition, as well as handling or treatment that merely altered the goods’ look.
items were subjected to procedures that were later determined to be incompatible with their intended usage.
Duty will be charged if the value of items exported increases because of the care they received while overseas. The re-importation duty is calculated in accordance with the outward processing guidelines. However, relief will be granted even if the products’ value has grown if it can be proven that the treatment was both required and unexpected. If the items are to be utilised in the same manner as they were intended at the time of export, then the treatment of the goods is required.

Rules for duty relief on reimported agricultural goods

Agricultural export refunds are subject to the extra regulations set forth below:

Reimbursement of export refunds is required.
You have 12 months of the date of export to re-import the products. In extraordinary instances, you may be able to extend this term.
It’s possible that the commodities were re-imported for one of these reasons:

Because of the laws in the nation to which they were exported, they could not be used at home.
They were defective or did not meet the terms of the purchase agreement.
Due to circumstances outside of the exporter’s control, they were unable to be used in the intended purpose.
Due to damage, the products were sent back to the European Union (EU). Damage to the products or the mode of transportation on which they were transported must have occurred prior to their arrival at their destination.
To attend a trade show, the goods were exported, but they were not used.
Natural, political, or social upheavals, or which arrived at the buyer beyond the agreed-upon delivery date, prevented the items from being delivered to their intended recipient.
Fruits and vegetables are the products in question, and as such, the CMO governs them. It’s possible that the goods were exported but never sold.

Procedure at re-importation of exported goods

The re-imported products must be proven to be those that were originally exported. Once export reimbursements have been made for agricultural goods, evidence confirming the products were denied is required from you. Because of the criteria for agricultural goods, the goods must be rejected for one of the following reasons:

The recipient of the items should be aware of the following:

Customs documentation should be attached to your package and labelled on the outside.
The postal service and courier carrying the package should be informed of the contents of the package. The following should be included in the product information:
precise description of the commodity code and the value..
Clearly label the package as “Returned goods: Exemption from Import Charges Requested” before mailing it.
Using Revenue’s Automated Import System, the courier or postal service carrying the cargo can make an electronic customs declaration (AIS).

They should include the following information on the customs declaration:

declare the merchandise as a return
D/E 1/11 should be coded with one of the following:
Only Customs Duty is waived on returned goods: Exported agricultural items that received export refunds are included in this category. F02 Returned items – things that have been repaired, restored, or otherwise altered in another country: F03
Customs duty and VAT exemptions for items returned by the same person who exported them: F05.
In D/E 1/10, enter the procedure code, and then in D/E 2/3, type the following:
INF3 INF3 INF3 INF3 INF3 Code 1Q27 and the number of your export declaration

Proof that the goods re-imported were exported from the European Union (EU)

Generally, the documents are accepted as proof of export:

Ireland’s original exports.
An original of the customs clearance and a copy of the MRN.

items imported from a different EU member state
Authenticated copies of the export declarations from the exporting customs agency.

An inventory of things that were returned (Form INF 3)
Form INF 3 contains the following information:

exported with knowledge that the items may be re-imported into another EU Member State and completed by the proper authorities in the exporting member country, this term is used.
For re-importation purposes, the exporter will receive the original and a duplicate form.

The following rules apply when this form is used to claim export reimbursements for agricultural products:

The exporting member state’s authorities must certify the form.
one of the following options is required:
In the event that any refunds or other sums had been awarded on exporting, the exporter would have had to pay back that amount. In the event that refunds or other amounts had been issued on exportation, that entitlement would have been revoked.
Your Revenue Office should be able to provide you with returned goods information sheets (Form INF3).

An ATA certificate of insurance
You can use an ATA carnet as proof of export if your items were shipped out with one. Even if the ATA carnet has expired, returned goods relief can still be granted. For the products to be re-imported within three years, they must have been exported.

If additional evidence is available, it can be supplied. If extra proof is needed to identify the re-imported products, Revenue may request it.

Re-importation of packaging

For each consignment of packaging that you want to re-import either empty or filled, you should make an oral statement. At the time of incorporation, customs often requires this paper form.

You don’t have to include the oral declaration form with each shipment if you seek for a permit to re-import your things. If you routinely export and re-import packaging, this form of authorization may be right for you.

Detailed information on this relief can be found in packaging imports and exports.

Information on the subject
The Authorizations and Reliefs Unit can be contacted if you have any questions. Info on prohibitions and limitations has a comprehensive list of prohibited and limited commodities.