UPS - Palava (custom duties)

Soldato
Joined
1 Mar 2003
Posts
5,499
Location
Cotham, Bristol
So I ordered my wife some boots for Xmas, towards the beginning of December they arrived with UPS I opened the front door and the UPS guy said there's a custom duty to pay on this that'll be £45 please. Turns out the company I ordered from have their warehouse based in France which I was unware of. So I rejected the delivery asked to return to sender and got a refund from the company I bought them from.

All done or so I thought

A couple of weeks later the same UPS guy arrives at the door hands me a box and says no charge this time with a grin on his face. OK. I didn't twig until a few hours later it was the damn boots! The box had a hand written label on it with some reference number (which I regret not taking a note of) saying no charge.

Once I realised what it was I contact the company and say I have the boots again so they send me a return label which I send off via the local shop. All done?

Nope. Today I receive an invoice from UPS for the £45. Am I screwed?
 
Caporegime
Joined
6 Dec 2005
Posts
36,291
Location
Birmingham
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Soldato
Joined
22 Jan 2014
Posts
3,596
UPS charged me import fees and admin fees, and then didn't deliver it.

Their help lines are a waste of time and they don't reply to emails. I'm still waiting for the refund 8 months later.

But you're in a better position. You haven't paid yet. Make them keep chasing you, and keep the documentation of you returning the package. They may say you need to pay them and then seek a refund from HMRC, but I don't see why you can't suggest they seek a refund from HMRC directly.
 
Soldato
Joined
3 Apr 2009
Posts
3,140
Location
Warrington
Would be interesting to see why you ended up with the boots again - if you still have a tracking number for the original delivery you might be able to see what happened to it. I think I read recently they keep the information accessible for 120 days.

My default position would be that as you only accepted the delivery on the basis there weren't any fees to pay I would outright refuse to pay. They shouldn't have released the parcel to you if taxes were outstanding.

The government website even states that 'You’ll be contacted by Royal Mail, Parcelforce or the courier company if you need to pay any VAT, duty or delivery charges (‘handling fees’) to receive your goods.'
https://www.gov.uk/goods-sent-from-abroad/tax-and-duty
Sounds like it's UPS's problem that they delivered the goods.

UPS are a nightmare, had a couple of troublesome pick-ups and deliveries with them.

Edit: also, is the £45 definitely for the original delivery, and not your return posting? Not sure how export duty normally gets worked out, guess there could be a problem there particularly as this company apparently doesn't understand how to ship things across the UK / EU border.
 
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Soldato
Joined
18 Oct 2002
Posts
6,977
Location
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Did you pay VAT originally to the supplier? There’s a chance that the sender sent the package (or was meant to send the package) as DDP or with a different IOR and UPS has messed it up.

UPS CS is unfortunately horrendous when it comes to dealing with imports. They were terrible at the beginning of Brexit and they’re not much better now.
 
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