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Getting Ireland Brexit ready: Government Information for people buying online from the UK

Addressing the challenges of a no deal Brexit takes place at a number of levels and requires responses at EU level, responses by Government, responses by citizens and responses by businesses and affected sectors.

While extensive Brexit preparedness and contingency planning has already been undertaken across Government, it is only by working together with businesses and our citizens that we can aim to mitigate the impacts of a no deal Brexit and ensure that we are prepared to the greatest extent possible.

As part of our preparedness and contingency planning, the Government identified that people buying online may be impacted by Brexit.

Below is the latest advice available to minimise any disruption.


Latest advice on

Currently when you buy something from outside the EU, you pay VAT when the value is over €22, and you pay import charges on items over €150. When the UK leaves the EU, these costs will apply to items from the UK. Therefore:

  • Know where the company you are buying from is based.
  • Always read the retailer’s terms and conditions carefully before buying, particularly around your rights to cancel the order, exchange or return the good. If the website is not based in the EU, this becomes even more important (as EU consumer law will not apply in the UK).
  • Before ordering from outside the EU, find out what VAT and import charges you may have to pay and how these payments can be made.

Consumer rights

EU consumer law will not apply to and in the UK after its departure from the EU. Current redress mechanisms, as provided for under EU consumer law, will therefore not be available. For example, if you are in a dispute with a UK-based trader, you may not be able to avail of the European Consumer Centre network or the European Small Claims Procedure.

However, consumers in Ireland can take individual action through the Irish Courts if they have purchased online from UK traders who do business in the EU.

Further information in relation to shopping online, your consumer rights and Brexit is available from the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (

Additional information is available from This website is regularly updated with the latest developments so do check back regularly.


Notes to editors

For media queries or interview requests on consumer rights

Doireann Sweeney, Head of Corporate & Stakeholder Communications

01 470 3625