Customs Declaration Service (CDS) checklist

Blog 4 mins

The current customs declaration system (CHIEF) is due to be replaced by the new Customs Declaration System (CDS) with ‘switch off’ happening in two phases:

  • 30th September 2022 – import submissions
  • 31st March 2023 – export submissions

At CORE, we’re working with our TariffTel customers to ensure a smooth transition on imports which is the first to switch over, but are considering both timelines so customers are ready for all elements of CDS, sourcing the additional information needed under the CDS tariff requirements. Find out more about the differences and why the change is brought in here.

Documentation and licensing codes currently being declared on CHIEF may have changed so reviewing your tariff and HS codes should be key part of preparations for the changeover. Our TariffTel look up tool will indicate the correct HS code to use when declaring goods through the new CDS system.

CDS are you ready?

CDS checklist – how to be prepared

We have prepared a short checklist of requirements that you will need to do to begin planning your business transition from CHIEF to CDS. Please get in touch with our team if you have any questions – [email protected]

  1. Register for a government gateway account – Click here to register – Register if you haven’t done so before and apply for CDS access
  2. Register for CDS access – Click here to register and subscribe to the CDS service – You will need: Government gateway user ID & password, EORI number for GB, Unique taxpayer reference (UTR), National Insurance number (if individual or sole trader), the date you start the business
  3. Provide updated authority numbers to HMRC (where applicable) – Via your CDS account
  4. Customers claiming duty or tax relief – provide HMRC with additional procedure codes 

What happens after registering? 

 The way you process your declaration payments will change with CDS. CDS uses cash accounts which replaces the Flexible Accounting Systems (FAS) in CHIEF.  

After you have completed the first step of registering for CDS on the government gateway, you will be allowed a specific cash account payment ability or deferment account is available. This access will allow for management of that account.  


Your authorisations in CHIEF will be automatically migrated to CDS. These authorisations could include the following:
CFSP (SDP and EIDR authorisations)
Inward Processing
End Use / Authorised Use
Outward Processing
Temporary Admission
Customs Warehousing & Excise Warehousing
Applicable Guarantee details or where applicable confirmations that waivers exist

More information can be found here

For support on reviewing your HS and tariff codes in preparation for the switchover to CDS take a look at our TariffTel look up tool which will indicate the correct HS code to use when declaring goods. Solutions are available for large enterprises managing 100,000 SKUs, whether you continue to insource or decide to outsource customs classification to our expert team.

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