Don’t Pay FedEx’s Customs ‘Advancement’ Fees

For a while now, FedEx has applied an ‘advancement fee’ of £12 to shipments arriving in the UK which have customs charges applied.

The reasoning for this is half-valid in my opinion. When a shipment gets off the ramp at the airport, if arriving from outside the EU, all need to pass through Customs (shipments from within the EU may be X-rayed, but aren’t liable for any import fees).

Rather than HMRC handling the shipments directly, FedEx employs their own clearance agents to work on behalf of HMRC (likely to expedite shipments), the wages of which need to be accounted for.

Also, unlike some other carriers, FedEx pays any fees immediately to HMRC, which enables them to deliver the shipment with minimal delays.

However, my reasoning against this fee though has always been that FedEx should factor in any clearance fees to the shipment cost.

So here’s a solution if you’d rather not throw £12 away in addition to your VAT. Important to note that Import VAT is legally required to be paid – there’s no reasoning for this to be avoided.

Their ‘advancement’ fee on the other hand is totally unenforceable, and quite cheeky in my opinion.

So simply put together an email (I’ve provided a template below, just add the invoice number and tweak parts as needed). Use the subject line ‘Customs advancement fee’ or similar, then send it to send an email to [email protected] (if you’re in the UK. Other countries will have a different email).

Dear FedEx,

This is in reference to invoice #xxxxxxxxxx.

After having bought xxxxxxxxxxx from China, I understood there would be the possibility of VAT due on receiving them.

I was however surprised to see an additional section for a clearance administration charge of £12.

Since China is outside of the EU, I of course will pay the VAT due.

However, I refuse to pay the clearance admin charge of £12, since at no point was I made aware of, nor did I agree to, any terms and conditions which clearly stated that I would be liable for any such charges.

At no point in the transaction and subsequent delivery was any contract for a clearance administration charge made between FedEx and myself.

I paid the supplier for delivery, and would expect that any international clearance fees be factored into the initial cost of such a shipment.

If you want to pursue further charges for delivery or administration or the terms upon which goods are shipped, I suggest that you take it up with the company who shipped the goods initially.

Therefore, I request that you update this invoice to reflect no admin fee, and once that has been done I’ll make immediate payment.

Please let me know when this has been done.

Kind Regards,

Adam

Note: The above worked for me on 5 consecutive occasions with FedEx, though I can’t vouch for it with other carriers. Definitely worth a shot though.

Let me know of your successes!

204 Comments

  1. It sucks that curriers do this kind of thing and you can’t chose to use or not use which ones you like. Definitely worth remembering this though!

    • Just worked for me, many many thanks. Really appreciate it.

      Regards. Ann

      • I try do it today as well for my new order i get suprised that £12 extra…

      • Worked for me, i recieved an email saying i would get a £12 credit to my account. So, i’m awaiting a new invoice for the £4.58 VAT yes, that is correct i was being charged £12 to recover £4.58. Im glad i came across Adams blog.

    • This hasn’t worked for me, I have paid the HMRC VAT part and that is accepted but its now with debt collectors for the £12. I am not paying it out of principle. Has anyone gone all the way with Fedex to court?

  2. interestingly i just tried that. got this reply:

    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised clearance procedure through GB

    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.

    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the importation of the goods through GB

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    ——–

    i’ve asked them to break down exactly what these fees are and where i agreed to them.

  3. Letter works well .Recently purchased goods from Malaysia and then received £18.03 bill from Fedex. I then sent an email and within 24 hours they waivered their advance charge of £12. So thanks for the information Adam really good.

  4. Thanks for posting this! I just got a reply from Fedex after sending your email and got the £12 removed from a shipment I got from South Korea to UK.

  5. Hi Adam

    Thanks for your advice. I used your template letter and almost immediate success. Keep up the good work!

  6. Brilliant – used your template last night, reply from fedex today saying credit for advancement fee had been raised and I only need to pay the VAT

    Many thanks

  7. Worked perfectly, and so it should. The principal here, as you so excellently point out is that no contract exists that makes the receiver liable for any fees. To be absolutely strict, we are no longer even liable for the duty since FedEx “undertook” to cover this charge themselves. However, since we are nice human beings, we’re not taking it that far. In any case, they got back to me with the following:


    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 123456789

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12 GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 7.24 GBP

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

  8. I challenged the legality of both the VAT charge and the Advancement Fee. Fedex quickly issued a credit note for the Advancement Fee. I pushed them to explain a legal cause of action for which I would be liable to pay the VAT charge. They tried to rely on Article 13 of Montreal Convention, but that merely creates a lien. Whne pushed rather than respond on detail Fedex, in a somewhat cowardly act, fowarded the VAT claim to their credit control company. When I told them they could take me to Court for the VAT money because Fedex had no cause of action Fedex issued a credit note for the VAT charge too. End result nothing was payable.
    Fedex ought to let receiving customers know about the charges before paying them, that is what how the Montreal Convention works, but rather that acting properly it seems the company policy is to issue an invoice after the event and just hope that the invoice is paid.

  9. This template just worked for me too. Sent the email at midnight and received a reply less than 12 hours later saying they’d credited the advancement fee. Many thanks!

  10. Adam, many thanks.

    I paid the VAT only, then emailed Fedex using your email template. FedEx credited the fee back.
    Jim

  11. I’m going to try a slightly altered version of this letter. They delivered an item last week then I got a bill asking for Taxs + $60!!!!! in these admin fees.

    Fucking riddiculous, going to see how this will work out, I suspect they will take it since they can only sell to collections agencies for 20-30% of the original value, so they will likely prefer settling for a higher amount.

  12. Hi

    Just tried this and as predicted they autoamtically with no argument cancelled £12 fee.
    Rididculous that they put this charge on for basically doing nothing. Imagine how much they make out of folk that just pay it.

  13. Worked straight away, fee annulled. They are obviously just trying it on the cheeky wotsits

  14. Thanks – used today and had the fee cancelled.

  15. Thanks for the template, Adam.

    I emailed this template yesterday and haven’t got a reply, yet. When I phoned them today, they didn’t wave it off easily as expected. The saying is basically similar as the only unsuccessful example in the reply, the shipper says it is the importers liability, etc. Not sure if he managed to get his £12 back.

    I will provide an update once they replied. Successful or not, thank you very much for providing this information.

    Regards,
    Jinyu

    • Following my previous information, they replied as follows after 17 days. I am curious how they send reply to others. Will this be a one-off thing? They are going to charge £5 per day storage next time. I will definitely not using them again.

      email replied as follows

      The sender opted to utilise our international priority service which includes a door to door delivery service including standard customs clearance. The sender has not opted to pay for a service where we contact you prior to delivery to advise of customs charges levied.

      The administration fee of £12.00 is the only part of the charge which is purely a FedEx fee and is levied to cover the costs of the Customs clearance administration.

      If you import goods on a regular basis you may wish to have a deferment account with Customs & Excise. This would allow you to have credit terms with Customs and Excise. If you do not have your own deferment account, FedEx use their own account on your behalf in order to facilitate delivery of your goods, therefore our administration fee is charged.

      On this occasion we have cancelled the advancement fee as a one off goodwill gesture. We have also placed a hold and notify on your account for all future shipments to be held for payment before delivery. Please also be aware that a storage fee of £5.00 per package per working day after two working days with a minimum of £10.00 may apply to your shipments and will be payable before delivery.

      We hope this answers your query. Should you require any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us direct.

      Regards

  16. Challenged them on this, and they waived the charge. They’re still trying it on!

    • Hi Jay,

      Did you made the complaint by phone or email? How did they replied? Will this be a one-off thing or we can always do that next time?

      Regards,
      Jinyu

  17. I tried this on Fedex and it worked!
    Story behind mine is: My brother-in-law had bought me a gift from the universal studios website. With the warehouse being in Orlando FL. US and us being in Canada, he had already payed a crazy amount in shipping. Nearly a month after I received this gift FedEx sends me a bill saying I had to pay for their express services. They charged for 3 different taxes (which is fair, whatever, those only added up too$6.35) but they had also slapped a $10.00 CAD advancement fee!

    I used this template, got a quick response from Fedex. Mine roughly tried to explain what the fee was, but would forward my e-mail to the invoice adjustment people, to remove it as a one time credit.

    About a week later it had been approved and processed! I’m not sure if they are sending me another bill for just the taxes,but hey! saved myself $10! Thanks!

  18. The template email worked for me – had a reply within 2 days waiving the £12 many thanks

  19. I HAD A REPLY FOLLOWING.Did i fail to cut off the administration fee?
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________
    Dear Customer,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 383303340 / AWB# 786282356619

    Having reviewed the above mentioned AWB, we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 3.59 GBP.

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Vijayalakshmi Srinivasan

    • Hi Tao,

      No, they removed the £12 admin fee for you, so you now only need to pay the £3.59 customs fee. Great job! 😉

      Adam

      • Hello, is there any chance youncan advise what to do please??
        I am in the UK and received almost 10kg goods from China (ribbons) for amount of 248GBP. A month later i have received posted letter (invoice) from FedEx telling me to pay 50.46GBP for those goods as a VAT/Import duty, or clearance charges, or both paid by them for me. When i was buying goods there was not a word about custom or other fees and shipping was free. Also Chinese invoice said that good been sent for the value of 59.50GBP….I pushed on seller and they said that if they put greater amount i would have get charged more and it’s basically not their problem… What do i do?? I feel like i have been trapped!

  20. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
    Your letter worked like a charm.
    Had a reply within 2 days and saved £12

    Cheers !!

  21. Did anybody challenge the taxes? I recently took up an offer for free item worth $37 with minimum spend and including free international delivery. So I bought 1 item, got the other free and was delivered by Fedex within 1 week. Now I received an invoice from FEDex for tax on both items AND tax/duty on the shipping costs of $75. So the invoice is for £25 duty + £12 Admin fee. Total £37.
    What really annoys me is that one of the items delivered was faulty, so when the supplier offered to fedex me a replacement, again with “free” shipping, I didn’t hesitate…(i hadn’t received the fedex invoice at the time) but now I’m going to end up with another invoice.

    So can this be right? do you have to pay tax/duty on shipping too?

  22. Hi Adam,

    You superstar. Fedex have responded with the below:

    “Dear Alistair,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 383449446,

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 gbp aised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 3.79 gbp
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.”

    I owe you one! Worked – June 2017

    Thanks,

    Al

  23. It worked, thank you so much! 🙂

    They responded on the SAME DAY with:

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 383478441,733246252928.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12 GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 4.52 GBP.
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Harshini R

  24. Success!!! Just got an email from FedEx cancelling administration charge 😉
    Thanks Adam!!!

  25. Hi Adam
    A BIG thankyou got a bill this morning asking for £4.22 VAT and £12 for Advancement Fee. I sent your template and 2 hours later they have taken the £12 off. FedEx is obviously ripping people off. I wonder how many other people are being screwed by this? I have also informed my supplier and told them that in future they are not to send items to me via FedEx.
    Thanks again
    Graeme

  26. Thanks so much! Worked!

  27. Hello please advise me on how to waive similar handling fee with dhl…
    Do u have a email address for dhl as well where I can try this template…
    They have just told me that my customs only £5.52 and handling fee is £10.48 (so sick of them)

  28. Hello please advise me on how to waive similar handling fee with dhl…
    Do u have a email address for dhl as well where I can try this template…
    They have just told me that my customs only £5.52 and handling fee is £10.48 (so sick of them)

  29. Thanks a lot. Worked for me.

  30. just used this today and it worked 😉 Thanks

  31. I recently received a replacement part under warranty, sent from the manufacturer’s head office in Taiwan for a product i had purchased in the uk,
    A week after it was delivered they sent me an invoice totalling £16.00, I have spoken to HMRC and under the circumstances, i should be able to claim the VAT charged back from HMRC but not this rip off “advancement fee”
    Fortunately, after emailing the person who sent the part they tell me that they have spoken with FedEx, so i assume they have paid them, but should i get further demands from FedEx i will pursue this route because they won’t change their stance over the phone

  32. Worked like a charm.
    Thanks

  33. Worked for me too! Had a reply within hours.

  34. Worked perfectly, thanks.

  35. Thanks Adam, worked a treat!

    Got this reply after using your template…

    Dear Sir or Madam,
    Thank you for your query regarding invoice **********.
    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 6.04.

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Senthamarai Anandraj

    Cheers
    Les

  36. Many thanks for this advice. It worked for me too. I had a reply in 8 hours saying they had canceled the £12 advance charge. I will pay the VAT of course.

  37. I’m in the US and had the same experience with the only international package delivered by FedEx. Never any bills or extra fees for any of the other international packages delivered by UPS, DHL or USPS. I was sent a wrong item from a UK seller and then sent the correct item after I shipped the return. FedEx sent me two bills for $74 each on a $430 item. I begrudgingly paid one but refused the other entirely because I wasn’t going to pay $74 and have nothing to show for it. I finally wrote a letter of protest, after already stating why I wasn’t going to pay it in a previous reply, and told them any further attempts would be considered harassment and they can serve me with papers and I would see them in court. They dropped it.

  38. I’ve emailed twice, it’s been 10 days from my first email and I’ve had no response whatsoever.

  39. Hey Adam,

    Just had my invoice through and was about to pen my own email when I found yours (saving me a lot of time etc!). Ordered some items from the USA and have no idea how companies are allowed to charge a fee which can be even more expensive than the customs duty due on items… crazy!! I’ll update when I hear from them… hopefully tomorrow 😉

  40. Hi , thank you for this. My fee was wiped but They are refusing to issue a new invoice ? Am I not entitled to a revised invoice? Can I refuse 5o pay if they refuse to give me a revised invoice?
    Also as I live in Ireland my currency is euro but they keep quoting my bill in pounds in their emails. My invoice was in euros .

  41. Hi Adam,

    Thank you for posting the formal letter to Fedex.
    It worked first time for me.
    They seemed very professional in their response and did not quibble in my case.
    Cheers and HNY!!

  42. Thanks for this….Tried the email template (with a couple of minor changes) and the £12 Advancement Fee was waived via email the next day.
    No grumbles about the VAT as it was only £5.09 and the item was from outside the UK.
    (From FedEx email: If your enquiry requires a claim or amendment to be submitted to the local Customs Authorities, we may need to contact you for further information before we can proceed. Please be aware that claims for clearance errors not caused by FedEx may incur an administration fee of £53.00 + VAT.)
    You could of course just go to the Gov.uk HMRC page and file the claim yourself if you have all the relevant information.
    Anyway – Thanks again! 😃

  43. Got a question about this part of your template:

    “If you want to pursue further charges for delivery or administration or the terms upon which goods are shipped, I suggest that you take it up with the company who shipped the goods initially”.

    Does that still make sense for me to say as I use MyUS.com which gives me a USA address to receive items from USA sellers who only ship to the USA. I then paid MyUS.com for shipping to get the items delivered to my home in the UK and they use FedEx.

  44. Thanks – still works. Resolved in a day

  45. Hi Adam,
    thanks for template,its worked for me as well i sent the same message regarding £12 next they waived that amount once again thanks for giving information.

  46. Hi Adam, worked for me.
    Other forums people were telling to take a hit and pay it.
    Thanks for advice and template letter.

  47. Did used temple with minor changes.
    And looks like FedEx charges who they want and when they want.
    This is the email I have received from Senthamarai Anandraj.
    Which is same person that replay to other people.

    ***********************************************************

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding the charge on invoice 384305460

    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary
    charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised
    clearance procedure through GB.

    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the
    clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for
    border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also
    cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.

    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to
    the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the
    responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the
    importation of the goods through GB.

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further
    queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Senthamarai Anandraj

  48. Hi Adam,
    Thanks for your useful blog. I just got below mail from Fedex after raising a query about advancement fee. I think Fedex are just minting money from customers of UK.

    Dear XXXX,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 38429XXXX.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we are pleased to advise that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised.

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully,

  49. George Wilkinson

    February 3, 2018 at 3:40 PM

    Thanks very much for this, you’ve saved me £12! I emailed them this morning using your template and they replied back in only a few hours, waiving the charge. I had to pay them the VAT (£15.72), of course. I expected to have to pay something like that, but not nearly £28. They must get this a lot, given the response I received is the same as the one’s posted above (other than the details).

    NOTE: I was initially confused about what to enter for “Invoice Amount” on the online payment system, but found you have to enter the amount listed on the paper invoice, not the amount after the “advancement fee” has been waived.

  50. Many thanks Adam. Like quite a few others, I used a slightly amended version of your letter and the £12 was credited back within a couple of hours.

    In my view, this practise is much worse than a ‘bit cheeky’ on FedEx’s part – it’s downright dishonest.

  51. I usually ship all the items I buy on US websites to my work address in UK under a different name. FedEx never had a chance to claim any VAT or admin fees back. *flips a finger*

  52. Worked, I knew it would.
    Thanks.

  53. Excellent thanks so much. Worked for me in less that 24 Hours. Just had the VAT to pay £12 saved in one email. Excellent thank you.

  54. It worked. Thanks Adam:)

  55. Just tried this for a fedex invoice my son recieved and it worked, thank you.

  56. Thanks so much for this, it just worked twice for me!!!!

  57. Brilliant. £24 saved on two invoices, which simply clarifies that Fedex are trying it on. This is shameful.
    Many thanks Adam.

  58. Cheers Adam, FedEx have credited £12 on the invoice within hours of sending them the email.
    Thanks!!!

  59. Thank you so much for your advice. I’ve just paid minus £12 advancement fee.

    Marj

  60. thank you so much it worked first time:)

  61. It worked, thank you! They got back to me the next day and waived the fee. Haha did not expect that at all. Kinda can’t believe they can get away with charging people this money!

  62. Awesome Adam, I took great delight in sending fedex your templated letter and within 24 hours I got an amended invoice minus £12 so I now owe them £6:96 vat.

  63. It simply wporked! Thanks!

  64. Andy Cornforth

    May 7, 2018 at 8:48 AM

    Just did this and it worked! Thank you soo much Adam!

    Though I was initially charged £14 advancement fee and not £12, as everyone else here seems to have been.

  65. It worked for me too. Just a thought..this is a genuine FEDEX thing isnt it and not just some elaborate scam to get £4 per person?

  66. I called first to argue the case over the phone and the call centre woman seemed like she wanted to be thickheaded and not listen to my argument as if she was just stating we process the item through customs for you, are you going to complete the paperwork i told her i wasn’t offered the chance as they had already processed it without agreeing it with me, I never get these advancement fees with other shipping companies. the first response reply from fedex was them attempting to clarify their charge, as if they used an auto answer to any query asking “what the Advancement Fee is”, i copied and pasted this and emailed it across to their first response, they then emailed back issuing a £12 credit note. this was 05/2018

  67. It worked! Thanks so much!

    I received a package with some goodies from my Brother in the U.S. (as a birthday present).

    FedEx sent me the corresponding duty and tax invoice.

    I contested it following your template via email and within 24hrs success! I had to pay VAT though. Very small amount 🙂

    • Boom Template success!……It worked for me…..credit note applied to Invoice within 24 hours.
      An obvious money making scam by FedEx!
      Power to the people!!!
      Thanks for the template

  68. Richard Sweet

    May 22, 2018 at 9:05 AM

    Worked like a charm, Microscope bought from India £35.89 to pay VAT but charge dropped at first try,
    Thanks

  69. Charles Gwillim

    May 23, 2018 at 4:10 PM

    Thank you very much, had the £12 admin charge waived and just paying the duty. Keep up the good work!

  70. David Bethell

    May 30, 2018 at 2:43 PM

    Hey Adam,

    Thanks for this and thanks for sharing. You’ve saved me that pesky £12.
    Wish I could buy you a drink.

    David 😀

  71. I cannot find an email address to send this to ! Can anyone help ??

  72. Worked for me!
    I just got the reply email waiving the £12 charge.
    Thank you so much.

  73. Email address won’t work for me

    • Jonny Blin

      Finally the email address worked and I can confirm I got my £12 back today. thanks for the help

      4th Jun 2018 14:02

      Dear Sir or Madam,

      Thank you for your query regarding invoice3xxxxxxx1.

      Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 UKL has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 13.41 UKL.

      FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

      Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

      Yours Faithfully,

      Suganthi R

  74. Top Man !

  75. Hi Adam,

    Thanks for this info and your email template. it worked for me, and was resolved within 12 hours of sending the email. I will of course pay the duty due but not the demanded 12£ which was 50% of the real value of the item shipped from India.

    Regards

    Kevin

  76. Thankyou! This has worked for me 4 times so far over the last 6 weeks. NO issues whatsoever. 🙂

  77. yes this worked for me too, the £12 charge was waived. Thank you so much!

  78. Worked for me, this is what I wrote:

    “This is in reference to invoice #xxxxxxxxx. After having bought something from the USA, I understood there would be the possibility of VAT due on receiving the item. I was however surprised to see an additional section for a clearance administration charge of £12. Since the USA is outside of the EU, I of course will pay the VAT due. However, I refuse to pay the clearance admin charge of £12, since at no point was I made aware of, nor did I agree to, any terms and conditions which clearly stated that I would be liable for any such charges. At no point in the transaction and subsequent delivery was any contract for a clearance administration charge made between FedEx and myself. I paid the supplier for delivery, and would expect that any international clearance fees be factored into the initial cost of such a shipment. If you want to pursue further charges for delivery or administration or the terms upon which goods are shipped, I suggest that you take it up with the company who shipped the goods initially. Therefore, I request that you update this invoice to reflect no admin fee, and once that has been done I’ll make immediate payment. Please let me know when this has been done.

    the reply was:
    “Thank you for your query regarding invoice xxxxxxxxx. Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 UKL has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 4.00 UKL. FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice. Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.”

    Thank you so much for advice on this AdamOwen.

  79. Worked for me 🙂

  80. worked for me mate cheers

  81. Just Confirmed today by Fede within 24 hours, thanks so much Adam

  82. Hey,
    Thought I’d give this a try and it worked!! So impressed! Thank you very much 🙂

  83. Worked for me for 1 paid and 1 unpaid invoice – TY

  84. WORKED !!! 🙂
    Hi Adam, Thanks for your blog post you saved me Fedex ripoff admin fee. I googled advancement fee and found your blog. I ordered a motherboard from China paid for airmail post. 12 days after delivery got a letter from fedex… They wanted £12 advancement fee and £9.80 vat. I wonder how many people just pay thinking its ALL customs fees. I emailed [email protected] in the afternoon using your template letter, the next morning fedex emailed me back giving me £12 credit and closed they invoice query. I paid the vat over the phone, using their automated payment system, the online version would not accept my invoice number ?????

    Cheers mate..

  85. Just tried it with your letter, got a response within 24 hours saying I had been credited for the £12. Awesome job, I didn’t think it was possible to get things like this refunded!

    Great job, thanks.

  86. Worked for me twice saved 24£ they cheeky no good ***** thanks for this saved me 24£ 24£ is 24£ at end of the day feel like I’m winning even tho paid 250£ in taxes n duty’s over 2 packages ,

  87. Dear Sir/Madam (Actually by name!)

    I am writing in response to your email that was sent to William Martin earlier this afternoon.

    I tried calling you and have left a voicemail with my contact details as I wished to clarify what the advancement fee charge is for and how it is billed based on the instructions of the shipper. As the advancement fee is deemed an import charge, if the recipient is selected by the shipper to receive the duties and tax invoice, this charge is levied against that invoice.

    I wish to confirm that as a gesture of goodwill on this occasion I have arranged for our back office billing team to credit the £12.00 advancement fee. A credit note should be supplied to you via email within three days for this amount.

    Should you have any further queries relating to the charge please do not hesitate to contact me. I have left my direct dial on the voicemail and it is also in my signature below.

    Regards

    Jim O’Brien
    Customer Relations Specialist / Team Leader UK & Ireland
    FedEx Europe, Middle East, Indian Subcontinent & Africa

    Tel: +44 (0) 2476 706 264

    I sent this to both email addresses: [email protected] then one to: [email protected].

    You know your stuff thank you sir for your talent it helped a lot! Also they should just scrap it altogether it is a half baked idea in my eyes. Hats off to you Adam.

  88. Thanks, Adam. I used your template (really helpful, thank you 🙂 ) and I just received this response:

    Dear Jon,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice XXXXXXX

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 gbp has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 9.17 gbp
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on XXXXXXXX

  89. Thanks, Adam.
    I sent this on 08/08/18:
    _________

    Dear FedEx,

    This email is in reference to your invoice # 385067965, addressed to my daughter, Rachel.

    When my daughter ordered branded clothing from Potlatch Ltd in Japan, we were advised we may need to pay VAT duty on receipt of the article. However, we were surprised to see an additional Fedex clearance administration charge of £12 on your invoice, received yesterday (6th Aug 2018).

    At no point in our transaction and subsequent product delivery were we made aware of any terms and conditions which stated that we would be liable for your clearance admin charges. We paid delivery charges to the supplier and would expect that any international clearance fees be factored into the initial cost of such a shipment. Surely if you need to make further charges for delivery or administration on goods you have shipped, they are due from the company who employed you to ship the goods initially.

    Please reissue us with your invoice, updated to reflect VAT only, and we’ll make immediate payment.

    Regards,
    ________

    We received the same reply posted frequently above, accepting VAT only to be paid on the original invoice. Also as stated above, the invoice payment wouldn’t go through online, but fine by phoning in card details.

    Maybe you can argue the VAT in some cases, but Potlatch Ltd had advised us at the time of purchase that VAT could be applicable, so didn’t try.

    Mike

  90. August 2018 – Fedex still trying it on. Sent a slightly modified version of the template and received the standard FedEx response:

    “Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 24.65GBP. ”

    Thanks a lot for your help Adam!

  91. Still working great in September. Thanks Adam

  92. Thanks for this Adam, worked for me too, so £12 saved.

  93. Worked a treat!

    Thank you, sir, for giving me to confidence to complain about this. It was particularly galling since the customs fees were only £4.66 in the first place!

  94. I just got a parcel from the USA
    Import duty £12.49
    Import tax £45.84
    Direct payment processing fee £32

    Didn’t no I would have to pay fedex an extra £32 what’s it for is that the advancement fee? As it’s not £12

    • Just got the invoice in the post
      Advancement fee £12
      Additional line items £20
      Not sure what the last one is for the items came from myus

  95. Hi Adam

    Many thanks for your blog advising against Fed-ex. Used your template and it worked for me. They obviously have a stereotype reply as it matches those already quoted. Scamming Bastards. Just waiting to see if the same thing happens with DHL as they are carrying the next parcel.

    Many thanks

    Richard

  96. Work for me but eventually. Got stock answer back from first email to which I sent another asking for copy of a signed agreement. Obviously they could not provide it and sent back yet another stock email. So I resent you template restating my argument to which they cancelled the fee. Beware though the claim my address has been put on a “hold” data base:

    “Thank you for your emailed response regarding Invoice xxxxxxxx.
    On this occasion we have cancelled the advancement fee as a one off goodwill gesture.
    We have also arranged a hold and notify on your address to request payment before delivery of any costs due at which point you can refuse the charges if you do not wish to pay and the package will be returned to sender.
    We hope this answers your query. Should you require any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us direct.”

  97. Thank you! Didn’t even occur to me to challenge the ‘advancement fee’ until I read this blogpost. I customised your email template and have just received this:

    “Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 5.65GBP.”

    Thanks again.

  98. Had a package from South Africa, no VaT attached only about 30 pound in value, received an invoice from Fedex 6 – 8 weeks after delivery requesting £18.65, 6.65 was customs and 12pound advancement. Sent letter and customs charge cheque which has been cashed and now received a debt collecting letter from Control Account for 12pounds plus 2.50 admin fee.
    sent back again waiting Oct 2018

  99. Hi thanks for the help in this got the £12 removed no issue it appears they have a standard format for replies so must be a regular occurrence for them. I would imagine there are so many people get caught on this and pay up. But thanks to you Adam I am not one of them

    Cheers.

  100. This worked for me for two invoices.
    Thanks so much, Adam 🙂

  101. Hi Adam,

    Thanks so much for the template. Sent it off to FedEx a couple of days ago and got a reply this morning. Happy to say that it worked and I now only have to pay the customs fees (which were less than the ‘advancement fee’).

    Thanks again!

  102. Hi,
    Thanks for the template.
    Just had a reply and the £12 has been waived.
    Disgusting how they do this / how many people will just pay it

  103. Thank you. Worked for me. Most grateful 😊

  104. This worked for me, was about to pay the invoice, had cheque written out ready to post. Feeling quite cross ,as my purchase from the States was going to cost £16.46 more than I had thought, I decided to find out online if it was a legal charge. Came across this fantastic blog, copied the template with a few adjustments and emailed it off, replied a couple of days later as per the above posts, it bought down my payment due to £4.46. Happy days! Shame on you Fedex for conning people out of this extra charge, and thank you Adam for sharing this with us all.

  105. Thanks Adam glad came across this as sent letter of got a reply back this morning saying the standard so no longer have to pay the £12 only the customs fees (which were less than the advancement fee)

    thanks again

  106. Cheers Adam
    Your template letter worked a treat , the £12 advancement fee was waived next day .
    Bandits !!

  107. Thank you so much! I came across your post when I was unexpectedly billed by FedEx 3 weeks after delivery. I tweaked your template to suit my details and yes, they waived the advancement fee of £12 so only had to pay the £4.65 VAT duty charge. You are awesome for sharing this!

  108. Can confirm this worked today (16/01/2019) and has saved me £12.
    Thankyou so much for the advice!

  109. Thank you so much for creating the template letter. I emailed it to FedEx with a couple of amendments and within 24 hours the bill was reduced from £16.77 to £4.77. Now just paying the VAT.

  110. Worked today (21/1/19). I just e-mailed them and got the reply a few days later. Weird because I tried it before Christmas by just paying the VAT and leaving a note on their website and then got sent a letter saying they were about to send my information to a debt collection agency so I got scared and quickly paid it. So this proves you just have to be persistent and make sure the message gets through.

  111. It worked! (UK – 24/Jan/2019) Thanks Adam!
    I received a text first, which I totally ignored because I expect a to receive a bill if I’m going to have to pay for something. On receipt of a posted bill, I saw the ‘Advancement Fee’ of £12, and then found your advice online.
    I emailed them a version of your letter, but I changed parts of it that I wasn’t comfortable with, and two days later they have wiped the ‘Advancement Fee’, no questions asked! Only the VAT to pay, which I’m happy to do :¬)
    Thanks again!

  112. Just to add my thanks to others, emailed the template on Monday – confirmation in email today (below) that the £12 fee has been cancelled.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of xxxGBP.
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.
    Result!

  113. I tweaked it to reflect my received gift from the USA and they took of the £12 ! This along with your experience and all those on this site, that is is NOT a legitimate practice of business !!

  114. Thank you so much!! It also worked for me 🙂

    I emailled them about it before paying so I wouldn’t need to wait for a reimbursement.

  115. Yes tried this today and it worked for me too, straight amendment to original invoice.

  116. Colin Aitchison

    April 3, 2019 at 7:39 AM

    It worked for me today 03/04/2019 thanks for your advice, I had 3 shipments from USA with £12 each, used your template letter, took them 1 day to reply, thanks for your advice and keep up the good work.

  117. 3 years on and this so still happening. It is criminal! Appalling. I have sent the email off. Thank for sharing. Rather perturbed by the holidaying emial response…. ‘If your enquiry requires a claim or amendment to be submitted to the local Customs Authorities, we may need to contact you for further information before we can proceed. Please be aware that claims for clearance errors not caused by FedEx may incur an administration fee of £53.00 + VAT.’

    Don’t want another administration fee whacked on top. Fingers crossed they forget the £12.

  118. It works for Fedex but unfortunately, this doesn’t work for UPS, they are assholes. If you have the option, avoid using UPS for any shipments. Also their customer service team is rubbish.

  119. Steven Sperl

    May 7, 2019 at 7:55 AM

    Thank you Adam!.Just received an email yesterday:Thank you for your query regarding invoice# 386058848

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 22.81 GBP.

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.
    Made my day!All the best!.

  120. Succes.
    May 2019 UK.
    Received email resposnse within hours and £12 Admin charges removed.
    Thanks Adam.

  121. Thank’s Adam! This worked a treat!

  122. I’ve emailed twice and they are refusing to remove the advancement fee and if i dont pay them this week they are threatening me witha debt collector. What should i do?

    Dear Sir or Madam,
    Thank you for your query regarding the Duty and Tax charges levied on the invoice
    Having investigated the matter in more detail, this invoice has been issued correctly. It is a customs duty and tax invoice for a shipment that has been imported into GB.According to GB customs laws, all imports from outside the European Union are charged duties and taxes. The amount levied is based on the goods value, the shipping costs and the type of item being imported.Please find attached a breakdown of charges to show how the invoice was calculated.
    If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us., Yours Faithfully,
    FedEx Disputes

    I’ve emailed them twice and both times they’ve missed the “Advancemet” fee part out.

  123. Hi,
    I’ve just posted an amended copy for DHL – hoping to hear back that they’ve taken off the £11 charge. I expect to pay VAT but balk at paying DHL for doing a job they’re already being paid for.

    Hope I hear back from them soon.

  124. Still workin December 2019!! 😀

    Order from the USA delivered in two boxes and FedEx sent two separate invoices each with Customs/VAT and the £12 Advancement Fee, so £24 in total to pay in fees.

    I emailed a slightly altered version of your template to suit my circumstances and heard back two days later that they have removed the £12 fee from both invoices, just leaving the Customs / VAT to pay. Their emailed response read almost identically to those included above, that they will not raise new invoices, they have just removed the £12 fee from the original invoices.

    Thank you for sharing your experience through this blog Adam, it has enabled and inspired myself and others to successfully challenge large corporations who it would appear are just ‘trying their luck’ with the public/customers regarding these fees…..dodgy trader tactics/behaviour hiding behind the respectability of the international corporate facade….nice to know that they have such respect for us 😒.
    I hope my recent success with your approach encourages others to challenge FedEx (and other courier/delivery companies) about these Advancement Fees.

    Thanks again Adam… And whilst I’m here….my best wishes for a wonderful Christmas with your loved ones and may the NewYear bring you peace, happiness and most of whatever you are hoping for in 2020 ☺️

  125. just had the same email but from Parcelforce demanding £12
    Sent a revised template to them .
    they replied with :

    Dear John
    Thank you for your email.
    The charges on your parcel are Customs duty and/or VAT. Goods sent from non-EU states, both new and used for business and personal use, as well as from Mail Order companies are liable to attract Customs charges.

    A part of this charge is the clearance/handling fee which is payable to Parcelforce Worldwide. This charge is to cover the administration when Customs raise a charge on imported goods.

    If you have an enquiry related to customs or any other taxes or duties, please contact HMRC through the website http://www.hmrc.gov.uk and search: ‘Notice 143’. Guidance is also published on the business link http://www.businesslink.gov.uk – please search for ‘portal import’. You can also write to the UK Border Agency using form BOR286 which can be found within the HMRC Notice 143.

    Any refund of the VAT and/or Customs duty, if applicable, will be made to you directly by HMRC. HMRC will also refund the clearance/handling fee if applicable.

    Please note that Parcelforce Worldwide cannot deal with enquiries relating to the raising or setting of VAT or import duties.

    Euan – Email Team

    This Email and any attachments are confidential and intended for the addressee only. If you are not the named recipient, you must not use, disclose, reproduce or distribute the contents of this communication. If you have received this email in error, please contact the sender and delete this email from your system.

    Parcelforce Worldwide is a trading name for Royal Mail Group plc.

    Registered in England and Wales, Registered Number: 4138203. Registered office at 100 Victoria Embankment, London, EC4Y0HQ
    ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
    I have just replied asking them to send me a copy of the signed agreement

    Will see what their reply is

  126. Worked for me. Thanks Adam.

  127. I’ve just used your template to apply to FedEx UK to waive the £12 Advancement Fee.

    However, I then realised that I was being charged £34.63 “Original VAT” on an item valued at $100 US (£76.40).

    On closer inspection I’ve discovered that the £34.63 is for “Disbursements out of the scope of EU VAT” and that VAT was charged at 0%!

    The package wasn’t even opened but the rear of the invoice states:

    Customs Value 151.86
    VAT Value 173.19
    Statistical Value [blank]
    Licence Value 152.19

    I have no idea whether this is $US or £UK, nor do I understand these charges; are you able to shed some light on this perhaps?

    In case it’s relevant, I bought a small painting on canvas.

    Kind regards,
    Dee

  128. I sent the email (slightly altered) to FedEx several days ago, but they haven’t replied. Now what?

  129. So I sent the letter and received the following response and then sent letter No2 . They saw sense and cancelled the admin fee. Excellent letter. Thank you.

    By way of explanation all goods coming in from outside the EU are subject to
    import charges in accordance with HMRC regulations. FedEx pay the charges
    direct to Customs by way of a deferment account to ensure the goods clear
    Customs and are delivered in a timely manner as this is the service selected
    by the sender. We will then invoice on for reimbursement of those charges
    including an advancement fee charged at 2.5% of the total revenue (duty +
    VAT) or £12.00 whichever is greater.

    The advancement fee would always be charged unless you employ your own
    broker to do the clearance or you hold your own deferment account with
    Customs. If this is the case you would need to advise us in advance so
    alternative clearance arrangements can be made.

    Further information regarding import charges and agents fees can be found on
    the link for Customs below:-
    https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.gov.uk_government_publications_notice-2D143-2Da-2Dguide-2Dfor-2Dinternatio&d=DwIFAw&c=fpIeS8RwmHkY2r_dFRL5tQ&r=teSCv_lwJraCLZGHRuz7ftnNfHda9ShwOL5MHFNemmc&m=QsWRy_14zo4rSKPy_qLu5MnOPGEyvdrCzFb-8OcRitY&s=bPGOEWRLYAqTMRSjQHcW1nn2xSBDFlRaGiar_QLGoN0&e=
    nal-post-users/notice-143-a-guide-for-international-post-users

    As the charges have been levied correctly no credit would be issued on this
    occasion. I hope this clarifies the matter for you.

    Letter No. 2
    Thank you for your comments as below.
    Please feel free to use it.

    Thank you for your comments as below.

    However as already stated I did not agree to the £12 charge, I was not at
    any time made aware of this charge.
    At time of purchase the freight was calculated and that is what was agreed.
    If FedEx wish to make this type of charge then it should be clearly stated
    at the time of choosing the freight carrier and not added secretly
    afterwards.
    That I feel is to say the least unethical an very misleading.

    I have dealt with other companies and had a similar service whilst importing
    goods from outside the EU. I have never been asked to pay such a charge.

    I feel, despite your efforts (which I thank you for) we are at an impasse at
    this point so can you please escalate this issue to a higher authority
    within FedEx or agree in writing that there are no further actions that
    FedEx can/will take to resolve the matter at which point I will go to the
    Financial Ombudsman.

  130. I have just had a £77 import duty waived after a few weeks of arguments over the phone. Purchased a Nintendo switch before Xmas from a website tecobuy.co.uk. No indication anywhere during transaction that it’s a Hong Kong based company or that they would use Fedex. I was not aware that I would be liable for import duty tax as I didn’t even know it was not in UK!

    First I know about the company being overseas is when Fedex invoice arrived in new year. At no point did Fedex contact me to say I was liable for import duty. I would not have imported at all as it’s cheaper to but from Currys. Fedex kept insisting that I should pay the charge because the seller ticked a box saying I would be liable! They don’t have any evidence that I was even aware it was being imported. The seller has terrible reviews on trustpilot which I only found out after all the problems started.

    Fedex threatened to go down the legal route and I encouraged them as they have no evidence that I was even aware that it’s a Hong Kong shipper. I expect a .co.uk websites with PayPal offered as a type of payment to be UK based. I don’t mind buying from overseas companies if they are upfront about all charges. This seller is clearly unscrupulous and is aided in a way by big companies like Fedex and PayPal. I have asked Fedex & Paypal to look into cutting business ties with tecobuy to stop others being ripped off but I am not holding my breath.

  131. Just ran into this case, had 2 packages arriving almost at the same time. Already paid the first invoice on friday because I didn’t check the details.

    Today I used your template for the second invoice but they didn’t read it properly.
    “Hi Daniel,
    Below we inform illustration duty tax based on customs regulation

    If you need this pkgs, please help to clear payment invoice as attached”

    Told them to properly read my response and explained again that I would gladly pay the duty tax without the advancement fee which is double the duty tax. Fingers crossed.

  132. Thank you Adam! This email is still working in 2020, successful on 3rd April 2020.

  133. Has this worked for anyone recently?
    I have received this response from FedEx, (any advice would be appreciated!):

    By way of explanation, all goods entering the UK may be liable for import charges in accordance with HM Revenue & Customs regulations. Any monies due on a package are paid in advance by the carrier to HM Revenue & Customs, so that the goods can be cleared and delivered in a timely manner. For this advance payment, FedEx charge an advancement fee to cover the cost of the use of our deferment account with Customs. A deferment is an account we hold with Customs, this is the only way Customs will accept payment for import charges, unless you employ your own broker. FedEx charge 2.5% of the total duty and taxes or £12.00, whichever is greater. As this charge relates to the import of the goods, the importer is responsible for the fee, not the exporter.

    If you wish to avoid the advancement fee you can use one of the following options.

    1. Open a credit card account with FedEx to enable us to take the duty/VAT at clearance. Customer Service can set the account up for you on 03456 070809.
    2. Apply to HMRC for a deferment account and supply FedEx with the details for future shipments. This is only available to businesses.
    3. Ask the shipper to send the goods on the Broker Select Option (BSO) and employ your own broker to clear the goods at the UK border.

    As we have none of these options on file for yourself, the advancement fee has been charged and will stand as issued.

    We trust that this clarifies the matter for you. However, if you should have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.

  134. Letter not worked for me, they just sent an email telling my why it was payable. I sent a reply stating just take me to court, happy to explain why it’s not paid. I offered to pay the tax (£7.40) and told them any further requests would be considered harassment. They have replied with the same as previous. This has now become sport and something to pass the time. I’ll let you know how I go on

  135. They’re still at it. Received an invoice letter this morning from them. I have used the template email to ask them to remove the advancement fee and also the duty fee as the shipment total is below £135. According to HMRC guidelines you don’t have to pay duty on goods below that amount. Let’s wait for their reply.

  136. Hi Adam,

    My order was several hundred pounds so I didn’t actually pay a delivery fee. Presumably, this makes me liable for the administration charge?

  137. I sent them a email and got this reply instead. What should I do?

    Thank you for your e-mail. Please accept my apologies for the delay in getting back to you.

    By way of explanation, all goods entering the UK may be liable for import charges in accordance with HM Revenue & Customs regulations. Any monies due on a package are paid in advance by the carrier to HM Revenue & Customs, so that the goods can be cleared and delivered in a timely manner. For this advance payment, FedEx charge an advancement fee to cover the cost of the use of our deferment account with Customs. A deferment is an account we hold with Customs, this is the only way Customs will accept payment for import charges, unless you employ your own broker. FedEx charge 2.5% of the total duty and taxes or £12.00, whichever is greater. As this charge relates to the import of the goods, the importer is responsible for the fee, not the exporter.

    If you wish to avoid the advancement fee you can use one of the following options.

    1. Open a credit card account with FedEx to enable us to take the duty/VAT at clearance. Customer Service can set the account up for you on 03456 070809.
    2. Apply to HMRC for a deferment account and supply FedEx with the details for future shipments. This is only available to businesses.
    3. Ask the shipper to send the goods on the Broker Select Option (BSO) and employ your own broker to clear the goods at the UK border.

    As we have none of these options on file for yourself, the advancement fee has been charged and will stand as issued.

    We trust that this clarifies the matter for you. However, if you should have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.

  138. Hi Adam

    Sadly this still is still happening !
    I have been charged for both vat and admin fees by fedex which I was unaware of prior to shipment.

    I bought face creams from Swissline Cosmetic -in Switzerland – and have been charged 50% vat!!!
    Looked up hmrc and the commodity code for cosmetics is 20% !

    Do I dispute both charges?

    Shouldn’t seller be responsible for choosing such an awful career service?
    Thanks,
    B

  139. Hello
    I have the same issue with Fedex , will use the template and hopefully will work for me too,

    They have invoiced me for 50% of the item cost for Import Tax – it is a fave cream , how this can be so high ? Usually it is 20% ?
    Has anyone discussed the wrong VAT rate with Fedex before?

  140. Christopher Arnfield

    May 24, 2020 at 1:50 PM

    Hi Adam,
    I have written to FedEx/TNT about the terms of the freight contract sent to me by the seller. I have checked my previous ones and they all state terms as DDP. In simple terms, that means that the seller is responsible for the taxes/duty etc. I only noticed it during my dispute with
    FedEx over their £20 fee. I have not yet received a reply.
    I questioned Alibaba and got an email, from one of their executives.
    In it, he clearly states that unless categorically agreed by the buyer, if the terms are DDP, then the seller must pay the duty/taxes.
    I have told FedEx/TNT that I will not pay their invoices and that their contract is with the seller, and not me. I also pointed out they should contact the seller about repayment of fees/duty/taxes etc as stated by Alibaba in their terms of business.
    I will update you or if I receive a reply.

  141. I got problem to get rid of this £12.

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 387470819.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12,00 GBP has been raised.

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    FedEx Invoice Adjustment Team

  142. Two £12 fees removed May 2020, thank you

  143. Hi I received this email back,

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoices 387506653 and 387494525.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 24,00 GBP has been raised.
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoices and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    FedEx Invoice Adjustment Team

  144. hey
    tried it but instead fedex sent me this email
    “”Please be advised that 12 GBP is fee for submitting Customs Declaration on your behalf. Unfortunately we are unable to waive that fee. If you do not want to pay 12 GBP as an alternative we can arrange FAS payment where you will have to pay customs charges directly. Cost of arranging such payment is 35 GBP. As an alternative we can return the package to the sender.

    Kind regards,
    FedEx Express
    Endeavour House, Coopers End Road
    Stansted Airport, CM24 1HA
    Phone: 03456 07 08 09″”

    how annoying that they couldnt even draft a more polite wording in email

  145. This isn’t working anymore. Three times i’ve sent this letter and three times they have refused to remove the fee, saying it is my responsibility to pay and that as the importer i am liable for anything FedEx want to do. Any advice?

  146. Usually this works for me but this time it was via text and was called a ‘direct payment processing fee’ I edited the email and changed the name of the fee and sent it to them and this was their response:

    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised clearance procedure through GB

    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.

    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the importation of the goods through GB

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully

    ‐–‐————————-

    I have emailed back asking for them to clarify the charges and at what point I agreed to them so hope that works….!

  147. This still works in May 2020, and I just paid a revised invoice for only the VAT due. Many thanks for your help!

    Here’s the email I sent:

    Dear FedEx,

    I received a letter from you today containing an invoice for £29.43 (ref. XXXXXXXXXX). This was completely unexpected and unadvised. It does, however, look like a genuine FedEx communication, and the shipment reference is the same as a small parcel I recently received (a motorbike part I bought on AliExpress). The shipment reference is XXXXXXXXXX.

    This is the first time I have bought something costing more than a few pounds from China. Having received this and now looked into it, I understand that UK VAT is payable, as this came from outside the UK, and because the value of the product is more than £15. This is a total surprise as I had no idea that VAT was not already included in the price, but I can see the reason for paying VAT, – I have no problem with that of course.

    But, what I don’t understand is the £12 item called an ‘Advancement Fee’. I can only assume this is some kind of hidden charge that is not statutory tax. At no point was I made aware of, nor did I agree to, any such charge. I was not contacted or advised at any point in the transaction or delivery process that an ‘Advancement Fee’ would be payable. There is no contract for that between FedEx and myself, and it is not applicable.

    I paid the supplier around £50 GBP for delivery, and would expect any other fees to be factored into the shipment cost. If FedEx believes any further charges for delivery or administration are due that will need to be taken up with the company who shipped the part to me. (I was not even aware that FedEx would be handling the delivery, – I selected ‘AliExpress Standard Shipping’.)

    Please email me a revised invoice for the £17.43 UK VAT, and I will make payment on that basis.

    Thanks.

    After 6 days I received this:

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice(s) 387431112, Air Waybill(s) XXXXXXXXXX.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice(s), we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    FedEx Invoice Adjustment Team

    FedEx Express
    Tel: 03456 07 08 09
    Email: [email protected]
    Web: fedex.com/gb/billingenquiry
    Fax: 0247 670 2739
    Stop paper invoices now and sign up for FedEx Billing Online at fedex.com/gb/account/fbo or call Customer Services..

  148. This no longer quite works as of April 2020.

    The best thing is to open a “credit card account” via the Fedex website or call them, before your package is despatched, and get your shipper to put the account number in the Fedex “bill custom charges” section. It may also work without the shipper’s help if Fedex can match the account address to the delivery address.

    They then charge VAT+duty to your account but don’t charge the advancement fee.

    I tried a variation of Adam’s email but got the following reply:

    “By way of explanation, all goods entering the UK may be liable for import charges in accordance with HM Revenue & Customs regulations. Any monies due on a package are paid in advance by the carrier to HM Revenue & Customs, so that the goods can be cleared and delivered in a timely manner. For this advance payment, FedEx charge an advancement fee to cover the cost of the use of our deferment account with Customs. A deferment is an account we hold with Customs, this is the only way Customs will accept payment for import charges, unless you employ your own broker. FedEx charge 2.5% of the total duty and taxes or £12.00, whichever is greater. As this charge relates to the import of the goods, the importer is responsible for the fee, not the exporter.

    “If you wish to avoid the advancement fee you can use one of the following options.

    “1. Open a credit card account with FedEx to enable us to take the duty/VAT at clearance. Customer Service can set the account up for you on 03456 070809.
    2. Apply to HMRC for a deferment account and supply FedEx with the details for future shipments. This is only available to businesses.
    3. Ask the shipper to send the goods on the Broker Select Option (BSO) and employ your own broker to clear the goods at the UK border.

    “As we have none of these options on file for yourself, the advancement fee has been charged and will stand as issued.

    “We trust that this clarifies the matter for you. However, if you should have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.”

    If your delivery has already arrived it may still be worth opening the credit card account and trying to persuade Fedex to charge only the VAT+duty to that account, without the advancement fee. After all, if they had let you know in time (e.g. at the time the package was shipped, when they started sending you emails or text messages) you would have opened the account then.

    The credit card account seems a really good solution though in the longer term.

  149. I sent your template over and they’ve replied saying that “Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice(s), we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised.” but I see no difference in the invoice page and amount to pay.

    Anyone know what’s up?

  150. Thanks Adam, used your template letter a week ago and received an email today from fedex to say they will drop the £12 charge, fantastic!

  151. Saved me £12.
    Your template and advise saved me the Fed-Ex £12 advance fee.
    Happy to pay the duty…..but nothing more.
    sent the template , had wait 3 days for a reply.
    very pleased and big thank you, Adam.
    Template still works in 2020..use it !

  152. Superb! Cheers Adam:

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice(s) xxxxxxxxx,  Air Waybill(s) xxxxxxxxxxxxx.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice(s), we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    FedEx Invoice Adjustment Team

  153. Kimberley Tedds

    June 24, 2020 at 10:57 PM

    This still works in 2020! I dread to think how much they make off the people who don’t bother to refute this… I just copy-and-pasted the template, changed the relevant details, and had it resolved – no questions asked! Thanks Adam!

  154. Does this still work? Its been a year since the last reply

  155. Superstar , thanks for this, quick email taken from the template and boom the £12 fee gone

    Thanks again

    D

  156. Maybe someone can help I have couple of issues.

    1. I ordered some samples from China which were baking packaging. Most of it is not useable quite a few bits are squashed so I cant even tell what the packaging looks like. So in effect the value of the package is negligible.

    2. I purchased BBQ from Asda. There were parts missing I raised it with Asda who said they will send the parts. Week later Fedex parcel came from China with the missing parts.

    In both cases above FedEx have asked me for Consignee fee of £12 and VAT for each parcel.

    I don’t believe I am due VAT or consignee fee for these parcels.

    Can someone offer some advice how I approach this please.

    Thanks

  157. I saw this was an old blog so didn’t think it would work but it did! They replied within 24 hours and you saved me £12 so thank you

  158. Thank you Adam. Your template works like a treat. I got reply from FedEx within a day, they have removed the £12 fee. x

  159. Wow! Tried this last night as I had the dreaded FedEx invoice without warning. And it really does work. Thank you so much I’m well pleased 😁👍🏽

  160. Thanks Adam,

    Worked for me, got a reply two days after my email crediting the £12.

  161. Thanks Adam recieved a credit note for the £12 fee!

  162. Thanks – used a modified version of this letter and have been credited the £12 admin fee – July 2020.

  163. Sent email, 24 hrs later a credit of £12 was applied to my invoice.

    Thanks Adam.

  164. June 2020 on the FedEx live chat who won’t credit the £12 charge

    Have stated the fact no mention at point of sale of any £12 fee to pay how ever the tax was expected

    Not willing to credit and not very helpful keep advising the full balance needs to be paid no part payments allowed and that they will pass the full £23.61 to a debt collector

  165. Hey everyone,

    I’m in the US, can’t find the email address to send this to from the US end. Please advise.. Thanks

  166. Worked for me too. They sent a text message with the invoice and I sent them an email to ask for the fee to be waived. They then responded in a couple of days saying the advancement fee would be credited. The item was delivered and I ended up waiting until they sent an invoice in the mail and then followed the instructions on the invoice to pay. I went to the URL on the invoice and put the invoice number in and then it showed the updated fee containing only the tax required by HMRC. It’s ridiculous that they are charging so much for this.

  167. Thanks Adam! You, Sir, is the man 🙂

  168. Many thanks, Adam – 4 years on and this practice of FedEx’s is clearly still going strong. Thankfully your advice is also still going strong! Just got the following response after using it to challenge a €15 advancement fee:

    “Dear Sir or Madam,
    Thank you for your query regarding invoice(s) XXXXXX, Air Waybill(s) XXXXX.
    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice(s), we can now confirm that a credit of 15.00 EUR has been raised. Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.
    Yours Faithfully,
    FedEx Invoice Adjustment Team”

  169. Thank you so much for your help! It was such a relief not to have to pay this extra charge.

  170. Used this letter this week with some tweaks.

    Added a line stating further correspondence required from myself relating to this matter will incur administrative costs of £12 per letter.

    Credit of £12 added to the account without objection.

  171. Wow thank you so much, just saved me £12. Two days after contacting them I got this reply:

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice(s) xxxxxxx, Air Waybill(s) xxxxxxx.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice(s), we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised.

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully,

    FedEx Invoice Adjustment Team

  172. Worked just as described – sent the template mail with a few things changed around, received a response advising me of the £12 fee credit two days later.

    Perfect outcome, thanks so much!

  173. Alasdair MacSween

    August 20, 2020 at 9:17 AM

    Thank you so much! I used your template yesterday and got this reply today

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice(s), Air Waybill(s) .

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice(s), we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised.

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully,

    FedEx Invoice Adjustment Team

    The fact they have a named Invoice Adjustment Team suggests they need to do this lots!

    Incidentally I went on to on-line payment system to pay the VAT components but then got this message

    We are unable to complete your transaction as the invoice number provided does not match our records for the total invoice amount you have entered.
    Please check both your invoice number and total invoice amount and try again.
    Please note 3 failed attempts will permanently lock this payment gateway for this specific invoice.
    For any assistance please contact us.

    So I have contacted them again to repeat I am happy to pay the VAT – if they can get their act together to let me!

    Thanks again so glad I searched and found your blog.

  174. I sent off the template , but just received this response from fedex uk .
    …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
    Dear Sir or Madam,
    Thank you for your query regarding the charge on invoice 387846517
    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised clearance procedure through UK
    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.
    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the importation of the goods through UK.
    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.
    Yours Faithfully,

    FedEx Express
    Tel: 03456 07 08 09
    Web: fedex.com/en-gb/contact

    Stop paper invoices now and sign up for FedEx Billing Online at fedex.com/gb/account/fbo or call Customer Services.

  175. Didn’t work for me ☹️…

    Dear Sir or Madam,
    Thank you for your query regarding the charge on invoice xxxxxx
    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised clearance procedure through UK
    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.
    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the importation of the goods through UK.
    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully,

  176. Sent your excellent template letter and they replied with… we are not changing the invoice… so they still expect payment.
    Do I need to pay the VAT now we are not in the EU anymore?
    What happens if I just do not pay their absurd £12.00, advancement fee,
    they do mention about an increased charge of over £50.00, so should I pay it or not.

  177. Janette Cosgrove

    August 25, 2020 at 8:34 PM

    Thank you so much!
    I had x3 of these invoices from FedEx and used your letter to be told I too do not have to pay their ‘ Advancement Fee’
    I was sent this standard reply . . .
    Dear Sir or Madam,
    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 387695074,387755199, 387755198 .
    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 36.00 GBP has been raised.
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.
    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.
    Woo hoo! (That bit was me not them!)

  178. Didnt work for me, got same reply as a couple of the above recipients & it isnt worth £12 to argue with them as itd be a shame to have a hold & notify placed against my address for future deliveries.
    Thanks for the tip though as it was worth a try

  179. I tried it didn’t work, they said this:

    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised clearance procedure through HMRC.

    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.

    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the importation of the goods through HMRC.

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

  180. Worked for me, got an email saying £12 was being refunded.
    However, they have sent me another invoice for the initial full amount!?

    Any suggestions??

  181. Thanks Adam have just sent it off…..

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