No Deal Brexit Ready: Post-Brexit Auto-Enrolment for UK Firms

Ahead of the looming potential of a no-deal Brexit, the Government has announced it will begin automatically issuing economic operator registration and identification (EORI) numbers to UK VAT registered businesses. This comes as a result of less than half of the required companies signing up to the system. However, the overall aim is to ensure UK businesses that trade with other EU member states can continue to trade after the UK leaves the EU.

Earlier this year, HMRC issued letters to 145,000 VAT registered businesses that trade with other EU member states, advising them on how to prepare for a no deal Brexit scenario, with over 100 pages of guidance on processes and procedures. However, so far, only 72,000 businesses have currently registered. The new scheme would automatically enrol the remaining businesses to allow them to continue trading in the EU. Chancellor Sajid Javid has said, “The move would help ease the flow of goods at border points and support businesses to trade and grow”. Our Head of Outsourcing, Priya Raja-Motala, commented and said “Automatic issuing of the EORI number will go a small way towards assisting SME clients to prepare for post Brexit planning. An EORI number is fundamental to continue trading overseas”.

However, it is vital to note, certain businesses that require enrolment into the scheme may be missed. This could be because of incorrect VAT return completion, newly incorporated businesses, or simply because of HMRC’s scope, and therefore certain businesses may be missed. Therefore, if your business does not already acquire an EORI number or does not receive one in the next two weeks, but intends to trade with the EU after October 31st, it is vital you seek further guidance.

For more information, please contact Priya Raja-Motala