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Q. What is the difference between direct and indirect representation?

Direct is where the agent acts on our behalf but is not responsible for any mistakes or errors. The University will remain responsible for the accuracy and completeness of all of the information on the declarations abd liable for any duties or Import VAT due. This is the industry standard and the scenario you are most likely to encounter. Indirect representative are where they are jointly and severably liable with the University for any payments due.

Q. What if the representation form asks for a University stamp?

Use a departmental stamp. If this is not accepted by the supplier and the University seal is required please contact Procurement Services.

Q. Do I have to appoint the same agent to handle the import as the supplier has appointed to handle their export?

No, although in some cases it might be easier e.g. fast parcel operators

Q. Does the University have accounts with carriers such as FedEx, DHL or UPS?

The University does not currently have one central account and contract with any one of these suppliers. Instead the University has multiple accounts with each, set up by individual departments over the years. This is something that is being reviewed centrally with the aim of having a more centralised approach.

Q. Do we have centrally any contacts for carriers like FedEx , DHL or UPS?

Unfortunately we do not currently have any contacts for any parcel operators or customs agents. When contacting these operators you will need something to identify these shipments - an account number, an airwaybill number, the supplier's comemrcial invoice number, our EORI number.

Q. Who can sign an authority for the agent to act as a direct representative?

The Head of Institution, or their delegated authority, can sign under the normal limits for signing contracts as set out in the Financial Regulations.

Q. I need to import some goods and the courier has asked for our deferment account number, have we got one?

The University does not have a deferrment account ( and departments are not allowed to set one up). If duty is due on the import our agent will pay it on our behalf (and recharge it to us accordingly) in order for the goods to be released. Import VAT : we do not pay this at the border instead provide in advance to our agents our EORI number and instruct them that we will declare any import VAT on our VAT return under Postponed VAT Accounting (PVA)

Q. Are FedEx and DHL being dealt with centrally by the Finance Division in terms of VAT/Customs declarations?

No, departments are currently responsible for liasing with these carriers directly currently and ensuring that VAT and Customs decalartions are made. This is something that we are looking into to see if we can improve going forward.

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