UK Car Imports regulations information

With Brexit negotiations at a bit of a standstill again, nobody can be sure of where things will stand with tariffs and so on, so it’s not worth dwelling on all of this at the minute. But it is probably a good idea to remind ourselves of the administrative requirements of bringing a car into Ireland from the UK.

With regard to UK car imports, any vehicle brought into Ireland is liable for Vehicle Registration Tax payment (VRT) and anyone bringing a vehicle into the country will need to pay VRT, obtain new vehicle registration plates, pay motor tax and obtain new registration plates. Remember, any delays in payment of VRT could result in fines – or the vehicle could even be impounded, with prosecution to follow.

VRT payments, made at any National Car Testing Centre, are based on a percentage of the RRP – recommended retail price – to establish an overall Open Market Selling Price, or OMSP. With regard to Covid-19, vehicle inspections were halted for a while but have now started again.

Vehicles presented before 31 July will be valued based on the date of their examination and there will be no penalties for charges which have been registered beyond the 30 day limit. However, if the vehicle is registered after 31 July 2020, the normal penalty charges will apply. There’s more advice available here at the Citizens’ Information Centre.

Anyone moving to Ireland can apply for VRT exemption, as long as they meet certain conditions.  There’s more information in this leaflet from the Revenue.

Anyone moving to Ireland and exempt from VRT payment is not permitted to sell the vehicle for more than 12 months after its registration.

Anyone exporting a car permanently may be able to claim VRT repayment, and once again there is advice here.

Another important update re UK car imports is to do with VAT. Cars imported from the UK will continue to be regarded as having come from an EU country right up to the end of the transition period, which is 31 December 2020.

Anyone importing a new car from any other EU country will have to pay VAT when they register it. A ‘new’ car is classified as one that has been in service for up to 6 months, or clocked up 6000 kilometres or less.

Motor tax is charged by the Irish government and vehicles must show a tax disc. With regard to insurance, this is compulsory and must be paid before motor tax.  Any UK car imports that are more than 4 years old must undergo a National Car Test (NCT).