The Government has set out the steps the businesses that trade with the EU or employ people from the EU need to take to prepare for the end of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020.
The steps set out will apply from 1 January 2021, irrespective of the outcome of the ongoing trade negotiations.
Importers and exporters
Businesses that export goods to EU member states must be ready for new customs procedures, which include completing export declarations.
Those businesses that import controlled goods, such as animal products, alcohol, tobacco or firearms from the EU will need to begin making import declarations from 1 January 2021.
Meanwhile, those businesses that import other goods that are not on the controlled list and which have a good compliance record, will be given the option of deferring their declarations for up to six months. However, they will still be required to maintain records of everything they import.
Those without a good record will need to make import declarations immediately from 1 January 2021. All businesses importing from the EU will need to do so from 1 July 2021.
The complexity of import and export declarations means that the Government is advising businesses affected by the changes to act now to appoint a customs agent.
Importers and exporters will both need EORI numbers starting with GB to be able to move goods into or out of the EU.
Travel to the EU
People who travel to the EU on business will need to check whether they need a visa or work permit and apply for one if it is required.
Employers of EU nationals
Businesses and other organisations that employ EU nationals must be a Home Office licenced sponsor to employ anyone from outside the UK.
The Government recommends employers check that existing employees who are EU nationals have applied for the Settlement Scheme.
Businesses that receive personal data from within the European Economic Area (EEA)
Businesses receiving personal data from contacts in the EEA could need to take additional steps to ensure they are compliant following the end of the transition period.
Providers of services to the EU
Those providing services to the EU need to ensure that their qualifications are recognised in EU regulations.
The changes at the end of the transition period are extensive and the government advises businesses to use the tool on www.gov.uk/transition to check full details of the steps they are required to take in the coming weeks.
For advice on preparing your business for Brexit, please contact us today.