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How to recover the IUC paid on imported cars

“Taxpayers can claim the tax return from Finance.
The Tax and Customs Authority has given guidance to the services to grant the claims for the refund of the Single Circulation Tax for cars imported from the EU, with the first registration prior to July 2007.
Until December 31, 2019, the IUC of used cars imported from the European Union or from countries in the European Economic Area was calculated based on the date of registration of import into Portugal. Since January 1, 2020, it has become the first registration of the relevant car to determine the IUC.
In an information note published on the Finance Portal, the Tax and Customs Authority states that, even though the law that came into force on January 1, 2020, according to which the IUC liquidation now considers the year of the vehicle's first registration, only "change the taxation for the future", it was decided "not to proceed with the litigation in this matter in relation to the assessments prior to the entry into force of that law".
In other words, regarding the tax paid in previous years, AT gave guidance to the services to defer "any gracious complaints, hierarchical resources or unofficial reviews that have the object of IUC settlements, of imported vehicles, in which AT considered the date of attribution. of registration in national territory and not the date of attribution of the first registration in another Member State of the European Union or the European Economic Area ".
Still within the scope of the spirit of reducing litigation, it was decided to "revoke the tax act" for the judicial process that is already in this phase or "to proceed to the unofficial review of the IUC liquidation acts" that have been the subject of a judicial challenge process .
Attention to the 1st registration of the classics
Owners of imported classic cars registered after July 2007 now face the challenge of being able to prove the provenance of the first registration, which in most cases coincides with the year of manufacture.
Until now, anyone who had bought a classic over 30 years old had to prove that the registration had existed long enough to satisfy the customs criteria of the maximum discount in terms of Vehicle Tax.
Much of the manufacture of post-war European sports cars (from the 1940s to the 1980s) was destined for the US market where they were registered. At the end of the 1980s, with the growing interest in classic sports, there was a massive return to Europe.
Since 2007, thousands of classics have been traded one or more times, a situation that makes it difficult to know the origin of the first registration. For these cases, a “family tree” of the vehicle will be required: if the owner has copies of the import process, there may be a copy of the first registration booklet in an EU member state. In case there is no documentation other than the DUA, a certificate of first registration must be requested from the IMT counterpart in the country of origin.
The absence of any kind of proof of a first registration in a European Union country makes the process unfeasible. ”

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