Last edited 21 Feb 2021

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ECA Institute / association Website

The SME's updated guide to Brexit

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[edit] Introduction

With Brexit on the cards, the number of procedural changes business owners must keep up with can appear daunting. This article should serve to identify some key issues for SMEs to be aware of, and some immediate actions to take.

[edit] Risk assessment guidance

This guidance note is intended to provide practical considerations for ECA Members as to what level of risk their business may face as the UK prepares to leave the EU.

View guidance note

[edit] EU Settlement Scheme

This guidance note is about the EU Settlement Scheme (which fully opened on March 2019) in line with the draft Withdrawal Agreement.

View EU Settlment Scheme Information

[edit] ECA Brexit Briefing – March 2019

ECA held a Brexit Briefing with BEIS in January 2019 for ECA members on the commercial implications of the UK leaving the EU. This included useful information on contractual clauses and is still valid given that the default of a ‘no deal’ scenario has not changed.

Download the 'Force Municipal' contractual clause information

Read Rob Driscoll's blog on the event

Watch a replay of the event in full

[edit] Importing and exporting

HM Revenue & Customs have provided guidance with videos about trading with the EU in a no-deal Brexit: Help and support for traders in a no-deal Brexit.

[edit] Transitional simplified procedures for imports

In addition to registering for (or now being sent an) EORI number, firms that are importing from the EU that wish to make use of transitional simplified procedures will need to register for these. The main benefits to firms of using these procedures are that they enable them to defer duties and the submission of an import declaration, minimising delays in the transport of products.

To register to use these procedures, firms will need:

  • An EORI number.
  • A VAT registration number.
  • Their UK business name and address, and
  • The contact details of the relevant person responsible for making the import declaration.

There is full guidance on the Gov.UK website,

[edit] Further information and guidance on Brexit:

ECA is working with the government’s Business Energy and Industrial Strategy team for Construction on an awareness programme to ensure industry is ready for trading in a ‘no deal’ scenario. Updates in this regard are being shared regularly via the member newsletter.

The government has created a 'Get ready for Brexit' site, please click here.

Furthermore, for a view from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) on the impact of Brexit, please click here.

[edit] For those who import products

HMRC has announced that businesses will be able to use simplified declarations and postpone payment of duties under Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP) if there is a no-deal Brexit (although there will be additional information needed for controlled goods). The measures will be reviewed after three to six months and businesses will be given 12 months’ notice if they are to be withdrawn.

Businesses can sign up for TSP online from 7 February but they will need an EORI number to do this. Registration and information, including which ports TSP applies to, is available at The list does include Hull, Tilbury, Dover, Immingham (Hull) and Felixtowe.

HMRC has written to all VAT-registered businesses which, if they import, they should have received already. Click to read letter.

The European Commission has also issued guidance on how industrial products will be handled under Brexit. Click here for guidance.

[edit] About this article

This article was written by Rob Driscoll, Director of Legal & Business at the Electrical Contractors' Association (ECA). It previously appeared on the ECA website in September 2019 and can be accessed HERE.

Click HERE for other ECA articles on Designing Buildings Wiki.

[edit] Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki


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