Paid customs duties, but had to return your purchase?

We can help you get your customs duty refunded, stress-free. Easy, simple, Duty Refunds.

Ad Valorem

Ad valorem is a Latin expression that means “according to value.”

In general, ad valorem tax is any tax based on the value of a property. When it comes to customs, it is the value of the goods according to which the rate of import duty is determined.

Each item has a code in the Harmonised System (also called an HS code) that determines the rate of the tax.

For example, if you were to purchase a laptop from abroad worth £1000, you would be responsible for paying customs duty and import tax. The ad valorem would be a percentage of the computer’s total value.

You will recognise this tax by its acronym: a.v. or Ad. Val.

How is ad valorem tax calculated?

When it comes to ad valorem tax for imported goods, it is levied by a country’s customs authority.

In the UK, once an item arrives from overseas, it has to go through customs clearance. It’s at that point that the rate of customs duty and import VAT is determined according to the HS code.

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Can I get my customs duty refunded?
If you’ve returned an item to a retailer abroad worth over £135, then most likely yes! There are a few caveats though. Certain items like alcohol and tobacco aren’t eligible.

And there are time limits too.

If you returned the item because it was damaged or defective, it can’t have first entered the UK more than 365 days ago. And if you returned the item because you didn’t want it anymore, it can’t have entered the UK more than 90 days ago.
How long does it take to get my refund?
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What is a letter of authorisation?
Who are Duty Refunds?