If you are planning to relocate to the UK, there is a solution to help you avoid paying extra taxes when transporting your belongings. This is through TOR 1 residency transfer, which is an allowance that allows you to move your goods to the UK more cheaply. Residence transfer relief (TOR) is available when:
- you are transferring your permanent residence;
- you are a student coming to study full-time;
- you are moving to get married or enter into a civil partnership;
- you are moving after getting married or entering into a civil partnership.
Carriage of goods without a TOR1 form
If someone transports their belongings to the UK without completing and submitting a TOR 1 form, they will not be entitled to benefit from Transfer of Residence Relief (TOR), which is an exemption from Value Added Tax (VAT). In such a case, that person will be liable to pay VAT, which can be relatively high, depending on the value of the goods being transported. In addition, such a person may face difficulties in clearing his or her belongings through customs and may be asked to produce documents to prove their value. Therefore, in order to avoid unnecessary costs and hassle, it is advisable to complete and submit a TOR 1 form before moving to the UK in order to obtain a VAT exemption for the goods being transported.
How do you prepare to submit a TOR1 application?
Before applying for TOR1 relief ourselves, we need to start by drawing up a goods list of the products we intend to transport, this can take the form of: an electronic document, a spreadsheet and a photograph of a handwritten document.
If you need assistance at a later stage, feel free to ask us for help. This is because there is a possibility of commissioning our agency to prepare the documents required to obtain the relief. To prepare this for you, we will need an authorisation document.
What goods are subject to TOR1?
Goods that are subject to TOR 1 relief can include properties such as:
- Household items, personal effects, furniture and items that we use in our daily activities.
- Bicycles, motorbikes, motorbike trailers, camper trailers, and other means of transport.
- Pets and stable animals. Thus, the transport of livestock will require relevant documents including the applicable animal health certificates. If you are transporting a larger number of animals, the relevant certificates can be uploaded at a later date.
The goods must have been in your possession for at least 6 months prior to the date of importation.
TOR1 does not apply when transporting goods such as these:
- tobacco and tobacco products
- commercial products for transport
Who can benefit from TOR1 relief?
TOR1 relief is only available to individuals and their personal property. It is not intended for companies, corporations, associations, groups or organisations.
To claim the relief, you must meet all of the following criteria:
- you must have resided outside the UK for at least 12 months, prior to the date of your move to the UK, or imported goods within one year of living in the UK.
- you intend to use the goods in the UK for the same purpose for which they were used before the move.
To establish residency in the UK, you may present a bank statement, utility bill, mortgage agreement, or tenancy agreement as proof. If you don't possess a UK address, you can submit a statement from your intended cohabitant along with evidence of their address. Additionally, you should provide proof of temporary accommodation, such as a hotel booking.
Before you can claim relief, it is imperative to obtain approval from HMRC. This requires completing a TOR1 form, furnishing information about the imported goods, and providing supporting evidence to substantiate your claim.