Will I be charged any duties or taxes for my order?

When purchasing internationally, various import taxes and customs duty may be charged by your local customs office, when artworks are imported into your country.

When import duties and taxes may apply?

Whenever artworks (goods) are purchased from outside the customer’s country, customs duty and import tax may have to be paid to the local customs authority. Exceptions to this are when both customer and artist are based in one of the EU member states.

Who is responsible for paying import duties and taxes?

It is the responsibility of the customer placing the order to pay any local import taxes and customs duties (see Artfinder's Terms of Use, point 16). We communicate this clearly at checkout to all customers who may be subject to the additional import fees.

In some cases the artist may offer a "Delivery Duty Paid" international shipping option at the time of purchase, this means that any customs duties would be included in the shipping cost paid at checkout. Please check with the artist who is selling your artwork before placing the order.

How can I pay import taxes due on my order?

As a marketplace, all of our individual artists are responsible for the pricing of their artwork and shipping costs, as well as arranging the delivery itself with the courier of their choice. Currently the Artfinder platform is unable to accurately estimate and collect import duties and taxes at checkout. This means that there are currently two ways in which you can pay the applicable import taxes and duties due on your international order.

Pre-pay duties via Delivery Duties Paid (DDP)

Some artists offer shipments with a courier that offers a "Delivery Duty Paid" option. In this case your customs duties would be included in the shipping charge you pay at checkout. Please check with the artist you're buying from if they are able to offer this option which will depend on the courier/postal service they use.

Pay when the item crosses the border

In most cases you will be required to pay import taxes and customs duties when your artwork crosses the border and is inspected by the customs officer. A small admin charge may be raised by the courier to cover the additional cost of processing this charge.

If there are extra charges raised by customs or border control, you'll likely have to pay them to either the courier delivering your parcel or the collection point if you're collecting it in order to receive the parcel after the charges have been cleared. Please note that some courier services may notify you of the raised charges after the delivery has taken place (e.g. FedEx). 

What are the import duties and tax by country?

Unfortunately the Artfinder platform is currently unable to accurately estimate and collect customs duties and import taxes at checkout.

To get an indication of the cost to expect you may want to check an online calculator such as Simply Duty https://www.simplyduty.com/import-calculator/. Please keep in mind that these values are only estimated and we cannot guarantee that this is what you will be charged (e.g. calculator’s estimate would usually apply a standard VAT rate and it will NOT include the individual carrier’s admin surcharge for example).

Other useful links to EU countries import VAT rates: 

European Commission online tool (relevant category from the drop-down list: Pictures)

European VAT rates

VAT rates 2023

If you have any doubts, please contact your local customs office for further information before placing your order.

If you are in the EU and your order total is below 150 EUR, or you are in the UK and your order total is below 135 GBP, marketplaces are required to collect sales VAT at the point of checkout, and you should not be charged anything further when receiving your parcel. You can read more about this here.

Will Artfinder reimburse me for any unexpected customs duties/import taxes?

Artfinder is not able to reimburse you for any local import taxes or customs duties, since those are payable by the importer (ie. the customer). This is why we advise all customers who are about to place an international order to contact the artist and seek to pre-pay or estimate the import charges ahead of time to avoid surprises. See How can I pay import taxes due on my order section above.

If you are based in the UK and you think you have been incorrectly charged import duty or import VAT then you can try to reclaim it from HMRC using the forms below:

Will I receive my order if I refuse to pay customs charges? 

No, if you decide not to pay the charges and therefore contact the courier/ postal service to refuse the parcel, they will usually hold your item for a period of time (this varies from a couple of weeks to a couple of months), after which your item will be returned to the sender. In order to receive a refund, we will need to confirm that the parcel has been delivered back to the artist.

Will I get reimbursed customs charges if I return my order?

If you request a return, Artfinder will arrange it for you and cover the cost of the return shipment of the artwork back to the artist. Once we’ve confirmed a safe receipt of the artwork, we will issue a refund of the artwork’s value and of the shipping cost which you have paid to us. 

You will be able to reclaim import VAT and customs duties. To reclaim the costs, please use form BOR 286 if Royal Mail or Parcelforce delivered the goods, or form C285 if it was a different courier.

If you are not in the UK, you will need to look into this further with the relevant customs authority in your country.

You will not be able to reclaim courier handling fees however. 

You only pay import VAT and customs duty when goods are imported into the UK, so you won't have to pay these again when sending back/exporting the goods.

Got more questions?

If you have further queries, you can contact our Support Team on customers@artfinder.com. We're here to help!

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