1. Waiting Time for a Unique Reference Number (URN):
What is the current waiting time for a Unique Reference Number (URN) to be received by the shipper, from the time of application?
Since our last update, the ToR team at the HMRC clearance hub have confirmed that an extra 10 people have been added to their team and this has helped reduce the back-log of applications. The wait time is now 2-3 weeks, which is down from 3-4 weeks previously, so the additional staff they have employed are now beginning to have an effect.
2. Arrival Date in the UK:
When the shipper completes their ToR form online, they are asked for ‘’the arrival date (ETA) of their goods in the UK’’. If the shipper completes their on-line application as early in the process as possible, there will be no ETA at that stage. Do they have to put down an exact ETA or will an estimated date suffice?
The shipper can simply just put down the month and year the goods are likely to arrive in the UK. This particular date does not have to be exact.
As a guide, for Air shipments, we would advise the shipper to put down the month which is three weeks after the packing date.
For Sea shipments, we would advise the shipper to put down the month which is six weeks after the packing date.
As long as the goods arrive within 12 months of the assignee’s arrival date in the UK, this is really what HMRC want to know.
3. Pet Shipments:
If the shipper has a Pet Shipment, as well as an Air and a Sea shipment, can the shipper apply for ToR under the same application, or do they need to make a separate application for their Pet Shipment?
Pets may also be included under ToR relief as well. The shipper only needs to apply for ToR once, which will cover all of their shipments – as long as they provide details of the Pet Shipment in their initial application. If they don’t include details of their Pet Shipment, they will need to make a separate ToR application and a separate URN will be sent to them in due course.
HMRC will accept that an animal is their pet if they have had it in their possession and use under the same circumstances as personal effects and household goods – for a minimum of 6 months.
4. National Insurance Number:
Do you know if it is possible to complete the ToR process without a National Insurance (NI) number? We don’t have ours yet and don’t know when we will be able to get it.
We have been advised by the ToR team at the UK HMRC clearance hub that you can select the option ‘’no’’ where it asks if you have your National Insurance number yet.
They also confirmed that this should not affect your application and that your application can still be submitted without you having to provide a NI number, as they realise that many people moving to the UK will not have a NI number at the initial application stage.
5. Maximum Size of E-Mail Attachments:
What is the maximum size of attachments that you can send by e-mail to the HMRC website?
We have been advised that the maximum attachment size which the HMRC website can handle, is 6MB and that their website does not send automated ‘’rejected due to size’’ responses, so if a shipper has attachments larger than 6MB, it is likely their e-mail will be not be received. They should therefore split any large attachments and send them in more than one e-mail. Each e-mail should have the shipper’s name in the subject line, plus ‘’attachment 1’, attachment 2’’, etc.
6. Useful Telephone Numbers:
Are there any phone numbers I can use to discuss my application with someone in the ToR team?
National Clearance Hub Helpline (for general enquiries on applications): 0300 058 8454
National Advice Service (for ‘’Duty & Tax’’ enquiries): 0300 200 3700
If you have any questions after reading, please don’t hesitate to contact us for further advice and guidance.