family moving into cyprus questions about customs clearance

Moving to Cyprus – Reliefs for Transferring Your Normal Residence

The below text provides a simplified explanation of the process for individuals moving to Cyprus and the reliefs they may be entitled to regarding the transfer of their normal residence. It covers the legal basis, the definition of normal residence, what constitutes personal property, and the specific procedures for transferring normal residence from another EU member state or a country outside the EU (third country). The summary highlights the importance of proving the Union status of personal belongings and motor vehicles to avoid additional customs duties, as well as the requirements and restrictions for obtaining relief. It also briefly mentions the process of motor vehicle registration in Cyprus.

  1. Legal Basis When moving to Cyprus, there are specific rules and regulations regarding the transfer of your normal residence. These rules are based on both community legislation (Regulation EC/1186/2009 and Directive EC/2009/55) and national legislation, including various regulations related to customs duties and excise duties.
  2. What is Normal Residence? Normal residence means the place where you usually live, spending at least 185 days in a 12-month period due to personal and occupational ties. If you don’t have occupational ties, normal residence is where you have personal connections. If your occupational and personal ties are in different places, normal residence is usually determined by your personal ties unless you regularly return to your occupational place. Attending a university or school in a country doesn’t count as normal residence.

2.1. Personal Property Personal property refers to items you use for personal or household needs. It shouldn’t have commercial purposes. Examples include personal effects, household items, vehicles, and tools related to your trade or profession.

  1. Transferring Normal Residence from Another EU Member State When moving from another EU country to Cyprus, you can bring your personal belongings and motor vehicle without paying additional customs duties. To do so, you need to prove the Union status of your goods.

3.1. Union Status of Personal Effects You can prove the Union status of your personal effects with documents like T2L or Τ2LF, along with related documents like invoices or bills of lading.

3.2. Union Status of Motor Vehicle To prove the Union status of your motor vehicle, you can use T2L or Τ2LF documents or the number plates and the original vehicle registration document from your previous EU member state.

3.3. Customs Clearance of the Vehicle After receiving your vehicle in Cyprus, you must complete the customs clearance procedure at a District Customs Office within 10 working days. For used vehicles, you need to present the original registration certificate and a certificate of CO2 emissions.

3.4. Value Added Tax (VAT) New motor vehicles brought from other EU countries to Cyprus are subject to VAT upon arrival. Used vehicles can be exempt from VAT if specific conditions are met, and you can prove that VAT was already paid in the country of origin.

  1. Transferring Normal Residence from a Country Outside the EU (Third Country) When moving from a country outside the EU to Cyprus, you can get relief from import duties and VAT for your personal belongings, including one motor vehicle for personal use, under certain conditions.

4.1. Terms and Prerequisites To qualify for relief, your personal belongings must have been used at your former residence for at least six months, and you must have lived outside the EU for at least 12 continuous months before the transfer. The goods must be imported within six months before or 12 months after your move.

4.2. Restrictions and Exceptions There are limitations on lending, pledging, or transferring the imported items within the first 12 months. Some items, like alcoholic products or commercial means of transport, are not eligible for relief.

4.3. Proof of Normal Residence and Vehicle You need to provide evidence of your normal residence outside the EU for 12 months and your intention to settle permanently in the EU. For the vehicle, documents like the registration document, insurance certificate, and purchase receipt are required.

4.4. Required Document You’ll need to complete Form Απ. 2 for the transfer of normal residence from a third country and submit it with supporting documents to any Customs Station.

4.5. Motor Vehicle’s Clearance Once the vehicle is cleared by Customs, you must complete Form SAD (Single Declaration Document) and Form C.104O for registration purposes. You won’t have to pay import duties and VAT if you meet the criteria.

  1. Motor Vehicle Registration After customs clearance, your vehicle must be registered with the Department of Road Transport before obtaining road tax license for circulation.

For further details and undertaking for the customs clearance of your goods, you can contact us.

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