Goods brought in for returns, repairs or replacement

These instructions are for travellers arriving from outside the EU and who bring into Finland goods purchased in Finland or in a customs and fiscal territory elsewhere in the EU to be returned, repaired or replaced in Finland.

If you have purchased goods in Finland or elsewhere in the EU and taken them with you outside the EU, but you are bringing them back to Finland to be returned to the seller or to be repaired or replaced, then the goods imported by you are not exempt from customs duties or VAT. 

When you bring back the goods to be returned, repaired or replaced, you must declare them to Customs when you arrive in Finland. 

Read more detailed instructions on the pages below.

Bringing in goods to be returned to the seller Bringing in goods to be repaired Bringing in goods to be replaced

When you bring in goods to be returned to the seller permanently, the goods must be cleared through customs and VAT may be levied.

  • When you wish to return the purchased goods, you must clear them through Customs when you arrive in Finland. The goods must be returned within three years of the date when you took the goods out of the EU customs territory. Submit a customs declaration to Customs when you arrive in Finland. Read more on Going through Customs. If necessary, Customs will provide advice on which customs declaration should be submitted.
  • Value added tax is usually levied on goods to be returned. Value added tax is levied, if the goods you are returning have been taken out of the EU untaxed, or if the seller has returned the VAT you have paid in the customs and fiscal territory of the EU, if you return the goods within three years of taking the goods out of the EU.
  • If you have paid VAT on the goods in the EU, and you have not received or will not be receiving a refund from the seller, VAT will not be levied again if you return the goods within three years of taking the goods out of the EU.Customs may request documents regarding the export and the tax-payment.

If more than three years have elapsed since taking the goods to be returned out of the EU

  • If more than three years have elapsed since taking the goods to be returned out of the EU, standard import duties will be levied on the goods, that is, usually value added tax and import duty based on the commodity code.

For the customs clearance, you need the following:

  • An account on the export of the goods, e.g. a tax free receipt, copy of the stamped trade invoice from the seller or a decision on release with certification of exit from Finnish Customs.
  • Be prepared to present to Customs an account of the value of the goods and possible transport costs. It is good to have documentation regarding faulty of broken goods to be returned, for example correspondence with the seller.

When bringing in goods to be repaired they must be cleared through Customs

  • When bringing goods into the EU to be repaired they must be cleared through Customs when you enter the country.
  • Choose the red channel at customs and submit the customs declaration. This procedure is called  a special procedure (inward processing) and requires an authorisation from Customs.
  • Declare that you are bringing in the goods for repairs and that you will be taking the goods outside the EU again, whether they are repaired or not. If necessary, Customs will provide advice on which customs declaration should be submitted.
  • Be prepared to pay Customs a guarantee covering the value of the goods during the repairs (about 30 % of the value of the goods and transport costs). Customs will return the guarantee when you take the goods (repaired or not) outside the EU, provided that an electronic re-export declaration has been submitted and that you present the export documents and the goods to Customs before exiting the country.
  • Means of payment accepted by Customs.

 

For the customs clearance, you need the following:

  • An account on the export of the goods, e.g. a tax free receipt, copy of the stamped trade invoice from the seller or a decision on release with certification of exit from Finnish Customs.
  • Be prepared to present to Customs an account of the value of the goods and possible transport costs. It is good to have documentation regarding faulty of broken goods to be returned, for example correspondence with the seller.

A re-export declaration must be submitted for goods (repaired or not), which you again intend to take out of the customs territory of the EU

  • Submit the export declaration yourself or authorise for example a forwarding company to submit it on your behalf. You can submit the declaration yourself by using the Customs Export Declaration Service.
  • If you have submitted the declaration yourself, present the web reference (NETT000012345 obtained from the Export Declaration Service), the goods and documents before exporting the goods.  If a forwarding agency has submitted the declaration, present the export accompanying document (EAD) to Customs. Customs discharges the re-export procedure and gives you a printout of the export decision.
  • Customs returns your cash-guarantee against the pledge agreement, when the export procedure has been discharged.

If the goods brought in for repairs cannot be repaired, and the goods are not returned outside the EU
If the goods to be repaired are not returned outside the EU, the goods must be cleared in the standard fashion into the country. In that case the procedure code is 4051.

For the customs clearance, you need the following:

  • An account regarding the cost of the repairs, e.g. a receipt.
    An account on the importation of the goods, e.g. a customs clearance decision as well as a pledge agreement on the placed guarantee.

When you bring in goods to be replaced and the seller gives you replacement goods based on a warranty

Contact the seller in advance, since the goods brought in as replacement must be cleared through customs. There are different alternatives for carrying out the customs clearance. The customs clearance can be done as a so called special procedure (inward processing), which requires an authorisation that the seller has applied for from Customs in advance. If the seller has an authorisation for inward processing, the seller can carry out the customs clearance and provide the guarantee on your behalf.

The other alternatives are that you can clear the goods into the country as returned goods (see section ‘Bringing in goods to be returned to the seller’) or as a standard import clearance where VAT and possible import duty must be paid.

A re-export declaration must be submitted for replacement goods when exporting them out of the country

  • If the customs clearance was carried out by the seller, they can submit an electronic re-export declaration to Customs.
  • If the seller of the goods does not submit the export declaration, you must submit an electronic re-export declaration yourself or authorise, for example, a forwarding company to submit it on your behalf. You can submit the declaration yourself using the Customs Export Declaration Service.
  • If you have submitted the declaration yourself, present the web reference (NETT000012345 obtained from the Export Declaration Service), the goods and documents before exporting the goods.  If a forwarding agency has submitted the declaration, present the export accompanying document (EAD) to Customs. Customs discharges the re-export procedure and gives you a printout of the export decision.
  • Customs returns your cash-guarantee against the pledge agreement, when the export procedure has been discharged.

For the customs clearance, you need the following:

  • An account regarding the repairs or replacement, e.g. an invoice/receipt or a written account
  • An account on the importation of the goods, e.g. a customs clearance decision.

                            

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