My artworks has incurred charges at Customs. What should I do?
Couriers are obligated to pay customs for any taxes due when importing an item. They will keep hold of any item until those duties have been paid by the customer, which may result in delays to delivery as well as additional clearance charges levied by the courier.
We encourage our artists to mark shipments 'Delivery Duty Paid', resulting in any customs charges being billed back to their own account and to include this cost in their shipping table calculations. Artfinder can provide no guarantee against or compensation for costs incurred where this is not the case, so we strongly recommend that you clarify arrangements with the artist via the Artfinder messaging system prior to dispatch should you have any concerns.
In cases where a package has not been sent 'Delivery Duty Paid', any charges are liable to be paid by the importer of record (in this case, the customer). Duties and taxes due for artworks vary from country to country.
For shipments to the UK, the majority of pieces sold on Artfinder will qualify for a reduced rate of VAT (5% versus the normal current rate of 20%). You can find out more here. If you appear to have erroneously been charged full VAT on your purchase, you may be able to dispute this with HMRC. The best course of action in such a case is to contact the artist from whom you purchased the work via the Artfinder messaging system to clarify that the package was appropriately labelled as an original artwork, and to reference paragraph 11 of the above linked document.