Currently, who more and who least has made a purchase from outside the European Union of technology or household items . This practice has become increasingly popular because of the multiple benefits in terms of the price of this type of product.
But, although it may seem that everything is an advantage, it is not always the case since, as it is popularly said, “cheap is expensive”.
The main reason why people buy outside the EU is because of the low prices they find in products that are much more expensive in our country. Mainly, they are usually fashion technological products such as mobile phones, tablets and computer accessories. Also, accessories such as bags, shoes and even clothing are very popular.
Lack of guarantees
In purchases made outside the EU, mainly to China and the US, one of the biggest problems that consumers face is the lack of guarantees. The main incidents are that the product received does not correspond to the one announced, or that, in the event of a malfunction, it is very difficult to claim or the guarantee is only one year.
In this case consumers are reluctant to complain , because, if for example you have bought a mobile phone and it does not work, the process becomes complicated when you have to send it back (the period can last two or three weeks), receive a reply and to have it fixed or replaced by another. The process can last for weeks or months.
Therefore, although the product has been cheap, the useful life has been very short or nonexistent and, therefore, the low price is not so profitable .
VAT and postal processing
One issue that is leading the EU is the payment of VAT and tariffs on products that come from non-EU countries . The boom in the purchase of products outside the EU, especially in China, has led to an increase in non-EU postal traffic, which makes it more difficult to control the packages and to check if VAT is not being paid. %, and of the tariff, of 2.5%.
For its part, Brussels has decided that from next year all shipments will have to pay VAT . Until now only products of more than € 22 have done it.
In this sense, the postal process threatens to collapse.
According to data from the Tax Agency , in 2015 a total of 1,365,153 shipments were received from countries that do not belong to the EU. Of these, the majority (970,131) were declared with a value of less than 22 euros.
My package is in customs
The Kahala Agreement (2012) is an international postal agreement that was processed with the intention of expediting shipments from Asia to the West. The lack of personnel for the control of this type of shipments have favored the fact that most of the products reach their recipient without Customs payments.
However, it is possible that, in some cases, customs will intercept shipments by ordinary mail and legally open it to check if the data of the shipment corresponds to reality.
If it is the case that in the post office they suspect that the value indicated by the seller is not correct, the package may be retained in Customs and notify the recipient. In this case, you will be asked for proof of purchase and you will have to pay taxes and fees if necessary.
When do I have to pay taxes?
Until now and until Brussels put into operation the new regulations, in purchases made outside the EU the recipient does not have to pay any tax if the value of the product purchased is less than 22 euros . Nor does it apply to shipments between individuals that do not have a value greater than € 45.
In the case of a commercial shipment to an individual, if the cost, including expenses and insurance, are between 22 and 150 euros, the recipient must pay the VAT that corresponds.
From 150 euros, whether the shipment is of a commercial nature or is between individuals, the recipient will have to pay the VAT and the corresponding customs and tariff costs, depending on the type of merchandise.