customs services: they charge taxes for outdated hardware from the 80's

Xanxi

Well-known member
AmiBayer
Blogger
Joined
Jun 10, 2010
Posts
2,364
Country
France
Region
Paris
Hi.

I am very upset after the french customs today.

It happens that i have found a Trackstar board on Ebay, after years looking for one. It is a hardware Apple II emulator on a 8 bit ISA PC card.
I need this for my A2000 or A4000 and their bridgeboards.

I have paid serious money for it and it has been shipped from the USA.

After a couple of weeks waiting for it, it appears that the customs have opened the parcel and charge taxes for it. So the parcel is not going to be delivered until i go pay for it.

How can these guys seriously charge taxes for a second-hand piece of hardware made in the 80's, which may even be non working? Besides, by the time this board was made, the VAT was lower that it is now by at least 2 points. The worst thing is that i can't even argue. I juste have to pay or everything is sent back to the USA.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

supaduper

Well-known member
AmiBayer
Joined
Sep 25, 2012
Posts
5,397
Country
England
Region
west midlands
I feel your pain bud , I too have been caught with that customs malarkey a couple of times, but hopefully the pain will go away when you see that little beauty up and running !
 

bber

New member
AmiBayer
Joined
Mar 7, 2010
Posts
90
Country
Finland
Customs sucks big time. I also paid VAT + taxes on Amiga 500 i got. And those are of course calculated including shipping costs, which is unfair in my book.
 

DojoDan

New member
Blogger
Joined
Nov 18, 2013
Posts
1,125
Country
UK
Region
West Midlands
Fairly sure I got charged a quid customs and £8 handling fee for my last US import :( It's hit and miss if they notice tho, only get charged on the off chance thankfully.
 

NinjaRabbit

Video Game Merchandise Collector
AmiBayer
Blogger
Joined
May 14, 2013
Posts
1,331
Country
UK
Region
South Gloucestershire
I don't actually mind the VAT, personally - I find that fair enough, and reasonable, as I didn't buy whatever given product here (granted I've not had this happen with used goods, though). It's Royal Mail's ludicrously high handling fees that get me, and the fact that they're charged if the goods and shipping costs together total more than a mere £18.
 

ajk

Active member
AmiBayer
Joined
May 16, 2010
Posts
1,053
Country
Finland
Region
Helsinki
Basically all that has not been taxed at some point in its life somewhere in the EU will be taxed when you import it. Unless the item has actually gone up in value, at least you are paying less tax than you would have, had you bought it back when it was new :)

Shipping gets hit with taxes because you are, in a way, importing a service.

Still, most small things that I have bought recently have slipped right through. And even when not, at least over here it doesn't really cause much extra delay, just have to fill in a form over the internet. No handling fees are applied. It may add a day or two to the process.
 

-Acid-

Active member
AmiBayer
Joined
Nov 15, 2010
Posts
4,390
Country
England
Region
South Shields
I bought my Apollo 060 from a guy in Australia for what seemed like a bargain deal, but he put on the import form what I paid him for the item instead of what I asked and I had to cough up nearly £60 up to get it from Royal Mail. To say I was was an understatement it would have been cheaper to buy one from Europe in the end.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Sardine

Well-known member
Staff member
Staff Moderator
Blogger
Joined
Mar 12, 2012
Posts
11,931
Country
England
Region
Merseyside
before i start waving the edit hammer can you all remove your swearing

thanks
 

stachu100

Active member
Joined
Aug 31, 2009
Posts
2,906
Country
Poland
Region
mazowieckie
I am very upset after the french customs today.

You should not.

They just do what they have to do.
Just study the law - especially import taxes for goods bought from outside EU.

The trick is to send goods with declared value on export declaration below 20EUR.
Then you are safe - according to EU law goods value is too low to be cleared by customs.

Checked in Poland several times - working all the time. :D
 

thecellartroll

Keeper of the Valiant Turtles.
AmiBayer
Joined
Aug 16, 2011
Posts
998
Country
Scotland
Region
Edinburgh
How's this for a customs ouch?

My Dad's friend posted him an old ibook from the states to see if he would be interested in using it to learn the basics of computer use. In the value bit of the customs form he put the original purchase price! The parcel came via Parcel Force and was duly left in his shed for him to find when he got home. He opened the parcel to find an old computer that he had no interest in, so he obeyed the instructions in the letter from his friend and donated it to a charity shop instead. A week later he got a bill for what I presume was either VAT or import Duty plus a handling charge. £98 total bill for a computer he never wanted and didn't keep. Ouchy!
 

RED IMPACT

Active member
Joined
Nov 30, 2009
Posts
1,382
Country
UK
Region
Lancashire
How's this for a customs ouch?

My Dad's friend posted him an old ibook from the states to see if he would be interested in using it to learn the basics of computer use. In the value bit of the customs form he put the original purchase price! The parcel came via Parcel Force and was duly left in his shed for him to find when he got home. He opened the parcel to find an old computer that he had no interest in, so he obeyed the instructions in the letter from his friend and donated it to a charity shop instead. A week later he got a bill for what I presume was either VAT or import Duty plus a handling charge. £98 total bill for a computer he never wanted and didn't keep. Ouchy!

If they left it without asking for payment first I for one wouldn't have paid it, or at least agree the toss with them/returned it.

The issue with under declaring the value of goods is in the event of loss! Some sellers aren't comfortable with it. If both parties agree then fair enough as usually the handling charges are greater than the import duty! :(
 

johey

Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2012
Posts
139
Country
Sweden
Region
Stockholm
I don't know if the rules are different in French than in Sweden, but here at least the custom tax for computer parts (old AND NEW) is 0%. You have to pay 25% VAT though of the value and shipping (no matter the type of goods), plus handling fee of 100 SEK (~11 EUR).
 

Atreus

Member
Joined
Feb 5, 2011
Posts
335
Country
UK / Poland
Region
Portadown / Gostków
Importing charges was a good lesson for me to not to buy something from USA... Too bad because I find every time something interesting from that part of the world :(
 

AndyLandy

Acceleration!
Treasurer
Joined
Aug 29, 2009
Posts
9,898
Country
UK
Region
Southampton
Don't forget that taxes are charged on transactions not on items. It's a subtle distinction, but it's the logic that's applied. That's why things like inheritance tax also exist. It's the change of ownership and the transfer of money that's taxed, not the goods themselves.
 

liviux76

Only Amiga makes it possible...
AmiBayer
Joined
May 9, 2011
Posts
1,662
Country
Italy
Region
BO
Importing charges was a good lesson for me to not to buy something from USA... Too bad because I find every time something interesting from that part of the world :(

I don't buy anything outside EU for this reason. Unfortunately, every time I did it, I had to pay custom duties and I also suffered long delays in delivery. At the end, it is just not convient for me. Not to mention the high risk of losing parcels...
I feel sad, Xanxi, for what happened to you, I just hope that, once paid, the board will come to you safe and sound and that it will work well... good luck!
 

NinjaRabbit

Video Game Merchandise Collector
AmiBayer
Blogger
Joined
May 14, 2013
Posts
1,331
Country
UK
Region
South Gloucestershire
The issue with under declaring the value of goods is in the event of loss! Some sellers aren't comfortable with it.
The other issue is that it's also tax evasion...
 

liviux76

Only Amiga makes it possible...
AmiBayer
Joined
May 9, 2011
Posts
1,662
Country
Italy
Region
BO
The issue with under declaring the value of goods is in the event of loss! Some sellers aren't comfortable with it.
The other issue is that it's also tax evasion...

I agree in case of new items but I am not sure that it is legal/correct to apply taxes on used items... or am I wrong? I am asking since I don't know the European laws about this topic... I know that here in Italy when you sell used items you don't have to pay taxes for the sale.
 

NinjaRabbit

Video Game Merchandise Collector
AmiBayer
Blogger
Joined
May 14, 2013
Posts
1,331
Country
UK
Region
South Gloucestershire
The issue with under declaring the value of goods is in the event of loss! Some sellers aren't comfortable with it.
The other issue is that it's also tax evasion...

I agree in case of new items but I am not sure that it is legal/correct to apply taxes on used items... or am I wrong? I am asking since I don't know the European laws about this topic... I know that here in Italy when you sell used items you don't have to pay taxes for the sale.
I honestly don't know, and would be interested to learn the status of that, if anyone knows.

I was commenting purely on the issue of under-declared item values. :p
 
Top Bottom