drivers taking vans home at weekends

They can take a company-owned van home without incurring any tax liability. They can even stop off on the way home to buy a pint of milk, or even take a load of rubbish to the tip once or twice a year and still pay nothing extra in tax. If they use the van for any other purpose then the employer has to report the use to HMCR and the employee has their tax code adjusted accordingly.

In a worst case scenario, assuming the employer waits until the end of this tax year to report the benefit to the Revenue, the employee’s tax allowance for 2008/09 could be reduced by £7,000 – costing the employee an extra £30/week in tax.

It’s up to the employer to prove to the Revenue that a van that’s taken home at night isn’t available for the employee’s private use.

Posted under Employment, Vans

Posted by Alec at 8:33 am, August 29, 2007

Where can I find the rules on carrying hazardous goods

But you don’t need to bother with any of that. All you need to know is that if the customer says it’s in LQ packages then you can carry it, subject to your insurance. If not then you need to subcontract it to someone with relevant training and access to a DGSA.

Posted under Hazardous Goods - ADR

Posted by Alec at 6:04 pm, August 28, 2007


You don’t half talk some bollocks.

The point is Tiny that you haven’t MADE any case and I for one really can’t see what it is that you’re getting at.

You seem to be complaining about an 80 mile job with 7 hours to deliver being put on as a backload. What’s the problem with that? If I had a job like that I’d probably put it on as a backload as well. If it’s not a backload FOR YOU or you can’t find anything to co-load with it then tough luck, move on to the next one. No-one’s ASKING, or expecting, YOU to do the job at backload rates.

My point in the other thread was that I don’t want our URGENT, IMPORTANT jobs delivering late. If we had 7 hours to deliver an 80 mile job I might very well spend some time finding someone going in the right direction and do a deal with them; that’s what this business is all about. The fact is that we don’t really get many jobs like that though; we’re not in that sort of market.

Posted under Courier and Freight Exchanges, Courier Basics

Posted by Alec at 4:58 pm, August 15, 2007

Check Company Details at Companies House

Click on ‘WebCHeck’ (right hand side of the page, half way down), search for the company by entering the company name or number, click on the company you want information about, then click on ‘Order information on this company’ then purchase/download the ‘Current Appointments Report’. Costs you £1. I think you have to register with the site at some stage as well.

Posted under Courier Financial Issues, Legal Issues

Posted by Alec at 8:15 pm, August 14, 2007

CMR, ADR and a total lack of understanding

If ADR doesn’t apply in this country it doesn’t apply anywhere else.

‘ADR’ (Accord Européen Relatif au Transport International des Marchandises Dangereuses par Route) isn’t a law or a set of rules that’s binding on us, it’s an agreement that’s binds the ‘Contracting Parties’ (the countries that are party to the agreement) to pass laws which implement the requirements of ADR.

ADR is implemented in UK law by ‘The Carriage of Dangerous Goods and Use of Transportable Pressure Equipment Regulations 2004′ as amended. This is known as the Carriage Regulations. These govern ALL journeys in the UK carrying Dangerous Goods – whether it’s a domestic journey or part of an international journey. The difference is that enshrined in the UK law are certain exemptions/variances/derogations which are allowed for WITHIN THE TERMS OF ADR for domestic journeys.

The full scope of ADR is implemented within the UK by the Carriage Regulations, with the addition of some exemptions/changes which apply to domestic transport AND ARE PART OF ADR. Similarly the other Contracting Parties to the Agreement have their own exemptions/changes which apply to domestic transport only and which are part of ADR.

Without the Carriage Regulations there would be no UK law on the transport of Dangerous Goods and we could ignore the whole concept of ADR while we’re in the UK. Other countries also implement the requirements of ADR by passing their own domestic laws and we’re governed by them while we’re in that country.

In short, ADR applies as much to UK domestic journeys as it does to international journeys; it’s just that international journeys are governed by individual countries’ individual laws which implement ‘vanilla’ ADR while domestic jouirneys within those individual countries are governed by their own (still agreed within ADR) implementations of slightly varied rules.
As for CMR, which the thread was actually about, contrary to popular belief there is no legal requirement for ‘CMR insurance’ if you take goods abroad. In fact there’s no such thing as ‘CMR insurance’ – just insurance to cover your compulsory liability under CMR, which as Geoff quite rightly points out is about £7/kg unless your customer has contracted with you to provide a higher level of cover.

Most standard GIT policies exceed the requirements of CMR within the policy’s ‘Territorial Limits’ – which usually includes the whole British Isles, including the ROI. This can sometimes be extended, without any mention of CMR, to other EU (or at least Western European) countries at minimal cost.

Posted under Courier Basics, Hazardous Goods - ADR, Insurance for Couriers

Posted by Alec at 8:12 pm, August 13, 2007

Non payment – French Company

Tufty wrote:
Has anyone any information how I can take a European company to court for non payment? Have sent new invoices with late payment charges, now all communication is ignored.


I believe the correct procedure is to sue them in the English courts, obtain a European Enforcement Order (EEO) and then apply to the French courts to enforce the order.

I’ve never done this though and you’ll probably find that a solicitor specialising in debt collection is the best way to go. I understand that Direct Route will chase foreign debts.

Posted under Late Payment

Posted by Alec at 4:02 pm, August 13, 2007

Loading bays – parking ticket

Yes. The warden’s quite right to issue a ticket if they don’t see any evidence of loading or unloading in a reasonable time, normally 10-20 minutes depending on the area, but that doesn’t mean the ticket’s valid. All you need to do is prove that you were making a delivery and that you were only in the loading bay for the time it took you to complete the delivery. 3 piece suites don’t carry themselves into buildings while you wait by the van doors.

Posted under Parking Tickets

Posted by Alec at 11:17 am, August 11, 2007