Business Support

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Are you 2020 Ready?

Ready 2020 is a campaign to support smaller companies across London, the South East and Hertfordshire as they face wide-ranging changes in the business environment.

It is a joint initiative by the South East LEP, London Economic action partnership (LEAP), Hertfordshire LEP and their respective Growth Hubs.

Download our helpful fact sheet to answer five quick questions that will help you determine whether your business is truly ready for the changes coming in 2020.


See below for more sector-focused fact sheets and Government-issued advice.


General business advice

Including the Government’s online business tool, information on data protection and intellectual property, and fact sheets on human resources, regulation, trading in digital services and goods, and further information on the EU Exit.

Transition period Show

There is now a transition period until the end of 2020 while the UK and EU negotiate additional arrangements.

The current rules on trade, travel, and business for the UK and EU will continue to apply during the transition period.

New rules will take effect on 1 January 2021.

Check how to get ready for new rules in 2021
Online business advice tool Show

Government has produced an online tool to help businesses prepare for the UK leaving the EU. The tool asks seven key questions to deliver guidance for businesses:

  • What your business or organisation does
  • Whether your business imports from or exports to the EU, is involved in the haulage of goods across EU borders, and sells goods or provides services in the UK
  • Whether your business employs anyone from another European country
  • Whether your business exchanges personal data with another organisation in Europe
  • Whether your business uses or relies on intellectual property protection
  • Whether your business gets EU or UK government funding
  • Whether your business sells products or services to the public sector
Click here to find out more
Data protection Show

If your business or organisation receives personal data from partners or suppliers in the EU or European Economic Area (EEA) countries you must ensure you can still do so legally after Brexit. Personal data is any information that can be used to identify someone, this could include a customer’s name, physical or IP addresses, or HR data such as staff working hours and payroll details.

Click here to view the Government-issued guidance
Intellectual Property Show

Guidance on trade marks, designs, patents right law, and exhaustion of IP rights after Brexit. This includes information on:

  • Intellectual property and the transition period
  • International Agreements with Third Countries during the Transition Period
  • EU trademark protection and comparable UK trademarks
  • Changes to EU and international designs and trade mark protection from 1 January 2021
  • Changes to unregistered designs from 1 January 2021
  • Changes to copyright law from 1 January 2021
  • Exhaustion of IP rights and parallel trade from 1 January 2021
  • Changes to international trade mark registrations from 1 January 2021
Click here to find out more
Competition and Markets Authority Show

UK Exit from the EU: Guidance on the functions of the CMA under the Withdrawal Agreement

The Competition and Markets Authority has published guidance on its functions under the Withdrawal Agreement. The guidance is intended for businesses and their legal advisors but may also be of interest to other enforcers.

Click here to find out more
Companies House Show

Changing your company registration from 1 January 2021

Companies House has produced guidance to help you find out whether your business will need to change its company registration from 1 January 2021, and how to do this.

Click here to find out more
Fact sheets Show

Visit your local Growth Hub website for fact sheets on:

  • Preparing your business
  • Human resources
  • Regulation
  • Trade in digital services
  • Trade in goods
  • Trade in services
  • What is EU Exit?
Click here to find out more

Work force and employing staff

Information on retaining and employing staff now that the UK has left the EU, including:

  • Right to work checks
  • EU Settlement Scheme
  • The UK’s new immigration system
Impact on work force Show

The UK government has reached an agreement with the EU that will protect the rights of EU citizens and their family members living in the UK.

It has also reached an agreement with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein for European Economic Area (EEA) nationals, and a separate agreement with Switzerland, which is neither an EU nor EEA member but is part of the single market. This means Swiss nationals have the same rights to live and work in the UK as other EEA nationals.

These agreements mean that most citizens from the EU, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland will need to apply to stay in the UK. They can then continue living their lives here as they do now.

There will be no change to the rights and status of EU citizens currently living in the UK until 30 June 2021, or 31 December 2020 if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

Click here to find out more
EU Settlement Scheme: employer toolkit Show

The employer toolkit equips employers with the right tools and information to support EU citizens and their families to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.

Click here to find out more
Employing EU citizens in the UK Show

Information for employers on employing EU, EEA and Swiss citizens in the UK, covering: right to work checks, the EU Settlement Scheme and the UK’s new immigration system.

Click here to find out more

Transport and movement of goods

Information on importing, exporting and travelling for business in the EU, including:

  • EORI numbers
  • Declarations
  • Driver eligibility
Get your business ready to import from the EU to the UK after Brexit Show

What you need to do now to make sure you’re able to receive goods now the UK has left the EU. This includes information on:

  • Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) numbers
  • Import declarations
  • Transitional Simplified Procedures
  • Customs procedures
  • Common Transit Convention (CTC)
  • Setting up a duty deferment account
  • Customs duties and VAT
  • Rate of excise duty on imports
  • Import licences and certificates
  • Rules for importing alcohol, tobacco and certain oils
  • Labelling and marketing standards for importing food, plant seeds and manufactured goods
  • Further help and support

HMRC Helpline

HMRC has launched the EU Exit Import and Export Trader Helpline for traders and hauliers importing from / exporting to the EU.

The helpline number is 0300 3301 331. Lines are open from 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday.

Click here to find out more
Get your business ready to export from the UK to the EU after Brexit Show

What you need to do now to make sure you’re able to send goods now the UK has left the EU. This includes information on:

  • Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) numbers
  • EU EORI numbers for importers
  • Export declarations
  • Common Transit Convention (CTC)
  • Duties and tax rates
  • Licences and certificates
  • Rules for exporting alcohol, tobacco and certain oils
  • Rules for exporting controlled goods like firearms
  • Labelling and marketing standards for exporting food, plant seeds and manufactured goods
  • VAT refunds from EU countries
  • Paying VAT for digital services to EU customers
  • Transporting goods outside the UK
  • Further help and support

HMRC Helpline

HMRC has launched the EU Exit Import and Export Trader Helpline for traders and hauliers importing from / exporting to the EU.

The helpline number is 0300 3301 331. Lines are open from 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday.

Click here to find out more
Transport goods out of the UK by road Show

How to transport goods commercially if you’re driving from the UK to or through Europe. This includes information on:

  • Applying for operator licences and permits
  • Booking a specialist vehicle test before transporting dangerous goods
  • Driver eligibility for driving abroad
  • Rules for transporting certain goods, including live animals or animal products, perishable food, dangerous goods and abnormal loads
  • Driver export documents, including export licences, a Movement Reference Number (MRN) and road consignment note (CMR note)
  • Vehicle documents
  • Local road rules for European countries

HMRC Helpline

HMRC has launched the EU Exit Import and Export Trader Helpline for traders and hauliers importing from / exporting to the EU.

The helpline number is 0300 3301 331. Lines are open from 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday.

Click here to find out more
Digital tools for traders Show

The Department for International Trade launched two digital tools for businesses exporting goods in and out of the UK market.

The free-to-use tools available on gov.uk detail product-specific and country-specific information on tariffs, regulations and other topics in one place, saving businesses time and making it easier for them to trade.

Click here to find out more


Check duties and customs procedures for exporting goods

The Department for International Trade has launched a digital tool to give businesses the information they need to export goods out of the UK market. The free tool, called ‘Check How to Export Goods’, has launched on GOV.UK.

The tool helps any business, particularly SMEs, to trade with over 160 markets by providing up to date information and guidance on what they need to know and do in order to export goods to an EU country or to the rest of the world.

Businesses input their product commodity code and export destination and can then access product-level and country specific information including duties, regulations, customs procedures and trade agreements between the UK and other markets.

The tool saves time by providing the information that is needed to trade goods in one place.

‘Check How to Export Goods’ includes key information on:

  • Commodity codes
  • Duties, taxes, charges and quotas
  • Rules of origin
  • How to move your goods out of the UK
  • How to move your goods into other countries/destinations
Click here to use the tool
UK trade agreements with non-EU countries Show

The Department for International Trade have published guidance to help you find out which trade agreements with non-EU countries are in place during and after the transition period.

Click here to find out more
Smarter Rules for Safer Foods: changes for importers of animals and products of animal origin Show

New regulations aimed at modernising protections against animal diseases and plant pests and improving food safety come into force.

Click here to find out more

Funding

Information on steps businesses may need to take if they have received funding from – or applied to – an EU programme, including the European Social Fund (ESF) and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

EU funding Show

What to do if you receive funding from an EU programme or you’ve applied to one.

Click here to find out more
European Social Fund (ESF) Show

How organisations receiving European Social Fund (ESF) grants will be affected now the UK has left the EU.

Click here to find out more
European Regional Development Funding (ERDF) Show

How organisations receiving European Regional Development Fund grants will be affected now the UK has left the EU.

Click here to find out more

Sector-specific help

Information for industry- and sector-specific issues, including guidance from Defra, Food Standards Agency and the Department for Education.

Download sector-focused fact sheets via your local Growth Hub below.

Guidance from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Show

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) recently published guidance on several key areas affecting businesses. Please follow these links for support on:

Defra has produced flowcharts explaining the new import and export processes after Brexit. The flowcharts explain the steps for farmers and food producers to import meat and dairy products from the EU after Brexit.

Guidance from the Food Standards Agency Show
Department for Education guidance to the Further Education sector and apprenticeship providers Show

DfE recently published guidance to support the FE sector to prepare in the event of no deal being reached.

The guidance signposts education institutions to relevant information, setting it in the context of how it may affect the education sector.

Any questions or concerns, please get in touch with:

Toby.Kavakeb@education.gov.uk or Gita.Dean-Andrews@education.gov.uk

Click here to find out more
Sector-focused fact sheets Show

Visit your local Growth Hub website for fact sheets on:

  • Construction
  • Food and Drink
  • Hospitality and Tourism
  • Manufacturing
  • Professional and Business Services
  • Retail
  • Tech, Creative and Fashion
Click here to visit SEBH

Visit Herts Growth Hub

Click here

Visit South East Business Hub

Click here

Visit London Growth Hub

Click here