Export Advice Hub: Returned Goods Relief – Recent change in requirements

Aug 4, 2022


We send goods, mainly to EU countries, for hire, loan or lease as well as sale or return. We use Returned Goods Relief (RGR) under CPC 6123F01. We understand that rules have changed on RGR for goods coming back from the EU. What are those changes?


RGR can be used at import when goods have been exported from the UK and are returned unchanged (which includes not repaired or upgraded) within three years of the date of original export. In addition, the exported goods must have been in free circulation in Great Britain or Northern Ireland when they were exported. There are some reasons why this may be extended to 10 years for example:

  • specialised goods or equipment have been on long-term hire or loan outside the UK
  • professional effects are being returned to the UK to be used for professional purposes, eg musical instruments
  • building equipment or machinery have been used in one or more capital project outside the UK.

The easement between the EU and UK was based around original evidence of export. Until 30 June 2022 it could be used even if the normal three-year time limit could not be evidenced, but you had to meet the other conditions for Returned Goods Relief.

So, prior to 30 June 2022 you did not need to give the actual date the goods were exported from the UK, you only needed to show that the goods were in the UK at some point before 31 December 2020 and were in the EU on that date on 31 December 2020. The easement did not apply to goods shipped after the UK left the EU (1 January 2021). The date of original export and full export evidence is now mandatory.

more information:

EU business: EU Returned Goods Relief – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

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