9th May 2023

Transfer of Residence (ToR) Explained

Time to relocate back to the UK?

There are many things to consider and lots of paperwork to fill out but don’t worry, we are here to help you. Our dedicated team of move managers will help you through the process so fret not.

One of the crucial documents to fill out is a ToR1. – Transfer of Residence.

This document allows you to import your personal belongings, vehicles and pets into the UK without paying customs duty or tax.

In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at what a ToR1 is, why you need one, and how to apply for it.

A ToR1 form is a document issued by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) that allows you to transfer your residence to the UK with your personal belongings. It is used to claim relief from customs duty and VAT on household and personal effects that you’re bringing with you from outside the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA).

The form should be completed by anyone who is moving to the UK and wants to import their personal belongings without paying customs duty and VAT. It’s worth noting that a ToR1 form only covers personal belongings and household goods, and does not include any commercial goods or items that will be sold or gifted. HMRC will provide you with a reference number for your ToR1 form, please make sure you forward this to your move manager, this should ensure that your personal effects clear customs when they arrive in the UK.

Why Do You Need a ToR1 Form?

If you’re moving to the UK, you’ll need to complete a ToR1 form to avoid paying customs duty and VAT on your personal belongings. Failure to do so could result in your belongings being held at the border until you pay the required fees, which can be a significant expense.

By completing a ToR1 form, you’re declaring that you’re transferring your residence to the UK and that you intend to use your personal belongings for personal use only. You’ll need to provide evidence of this, such as a lease agreement or utility bill, to support your application.

To apply for a ToR1 form, you’ll need to complete an online application form on the HMRC website.


The form will ask for personal information, such as your name, address, and contact details, as well as information about your personal belongings, such as the type and quantity of items you’re bringing with you.

You’ll also need to provide evidence of your intention to use your personal belongings for personal use only. This could include a tenancy agreement, utility bills, or a letter from your employer confirming your relocation to the UK.

Once you’ve completed the form, you’ll need to submit it to HMRC for processing and not your shipping company. Turnaround can be in excess of 4 weeks, but can take longer if incorrectly filled so please be extra cautious and double-check with your move manager.

In conclusion, obtaining a ToR1 form is an important step if you’re planning to move to the UK and want to bring your personal belongings with you. By completing the form and providing the required evidence, you can avoid paying customs duty and VAT on your personal belongings, which can be a significant expense. So, make sure to apply for a ToR1 form well in advance of your move to the UK to ensure a smooth transition. For any additional help, you can ask your move manager to go through the process with you.