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Receiver’s Guide to Duties and Taxes

Learn the fundamentals about duties and taxes to understand who pays and why.

Know Your Customer (KYC) Norms for Shipment Clearance

All shipments sent from or received into India need KYC documents (Government recognized Identity and Address proof) to be presented to Customs during shipment clearance (reference: Customs Circular No. 9/2010).
Absence of these documents will mean clearance delay as shipments will go into Customs Bond until KYC documents are provided by the shipper or consignee based in India.
Consignees receiving shipments in India can upload the documents at www.dhlindia-kyc.comExternal Link / New Window from their desktop or smart phone.
The below table provides more information about KYC documents required for shipment customs clearance. As a shipper or consignee, you can refer to the type of document that you need to submit based on type of your organization - in the table below.
Extract of Circular No.9/2010 - Customs dated 8th April 2010 on KYC norms for Courier issued by Indian Customs
Please see documents applicable for your type of Organization
Sr. NoType/Form of organizationDocuments to be obtained
(Only 1 document is sufficient, if it contains both Identity and Address Proof which confirms the address on the air waybill)
Voter Identity Card
PAN Card
Certificate of Incorporation
Copy of PAN Card allotment letter
Copy of Telephone Bill (not older than 3 months)
3Partnership firm*GSTIN
Registration Certificate
Partnership Deed
Any valid official document identifying the partners and the person holding the power of attorney, and their address
4Trust foundations*GSTIN
Registration Certificate
Any valid official document identifying the Trustees and the person holding the power of attorney, and their address
Resolution of the managing body of the Trust Foundation
*GSTIN is mandatory at the time of document filing in Customs, unless the Importer/ Exporter in India is exempted from GSTIN. Along with GSTIN, one more document to be submitted from the remaining options.
If GSTIN is exempted, any 2 documents from the remaining options to be submitted.
Goods Purchased Online for Personal Use

You may be charged customs duties and taxes for something purchased online because:
  • Duties and taxes are most typically not included in the price of the goods you purchase online, and might not be included in the overall shipping costs you pay to the online retailer.
  • When purchasing goods online, some or all of these goods may not originate in the country you reside in, therefore are subject to a customs duty, which is a tariff or tax imposed on goods when transported across international borders.
  • When goods are not shipped domestically (within your country) or within a single customs union, such as the European Union, you are liable to pay any inbound duties and taxes which your local customs authority deems appropriate.
  • To ensure the DHL courier can deliver your goods in shortest possible time after entering your country or customs union, DHL pays the customs authority on your behalf for any duties and taxes that are due on the goods.
  • Once the duties and taxes are fully repaid to DHL the goods will be delivered to you
  • What is payable, if anything, depends on where the goods are sent from, the type of goods, their transactional value and the weight of the package
When buying goods online, you should always check whether they are either being sent to your address from:
  • Your country
  • Another country
  • Outside your customs union country
Note: Different rules apply when buying goods for commercial use.