This guidance is for England, Scotland & Wales
Electrical equipment designed for use between 50-1,000 volts AC or 75-1,500 volts DC must be safe, constructed in accordance with principles constituting good engineering practice and conform to specific regulatory safety objectives.
If the electrical equipment complies with a harmonised European standard, it is automatically taken to be safe. There are specific requirements for the manufacturer of the product, including affixing the CE mark, drawing up and holding an EC declaration of conformity, and keeping technical information for inspection purposes.
Electrical equipment is required to comply with the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 2016. The Regulations therefore apply to electrical equipment that is designed to be connected to a domestic mains electricity supply, as well as to some industrial equipment.
Components of electrical equipment are also covered if they are to be supplied as separate items.
Second-hand items (including items for hire and equipment supplied as part of a furnished accommodation) are required to satisfy the principal elements of the safety objectives only. They are not required to be CE marked etc.
Principal safety objectives
Electrical equipment must:
- be constructed in such a way to ensure that it can be used safely and for the purpose that it was made
- be in conformity with the safety objectives contained in Part 2 of and Schedules 1 and 2 to the Regulations, including:
– being marked in accordance with the requirements set out below so that it can be easily traced
– designed so that the equipment, including its component parts, can be safely and properly assembled and connected
– instructions and information required for the equipment to be used safely must be marked on the equipment or in an accompanying notice
– operate at a safe temperature with no dangerous arcing or radiation
– have adequate insulation for foreseeable conditions
– have the right technical information available, demonstrating compliance with CE marking requirements and a ‘declaration of conformity’
Satisfying the principal safety objectives
Manufacturers must have adequate internal production control (quality assurance) as a means of satisfying conformity, achieved through taking responsibility for the technical documentation and monitoring manufacturing processes. Either the manufacturer or (by written mandate) the authorised representatives should draw up a declaration of conformity in accordance with Schedule 8 to the Regulations and apply the CE mark (as below).
If the electrical equipment complies with a harmonised European standard, there is a presumption that it meets the principal safety objectives. If there is no relevant harmonised European standard, compliance with international standards will be sufficient. If there are no relevant international standards, compliance with a national standard will be sufficient provided that standard includes everything in the principal safety objectives.
Labelling & records
A manufacturer or their authorised representative within the European Economic Area (EEA) must do the following.
Ensure that the electrical equipment bears a type, batch or serial number or other element allowing its identification.
Indicate on the electrical equipment the manufacturer’s name, registered trade name or registered trade mark and the postal address at which they can be contacted. If it is not possible to indicate these on the equipment itself, then it may be indicated on the product packaging or accompanying documents. These have to be legible and easily understood by the end users and market surveillance authorities. In the UK it must be in English.
Affix a CE mark to the equipment, the packaging, instruction sheet or guarantee certificate. The CE mark is a declaration that the equipment complies with the Regulations.
Draw up and hold an ‘EC declaration of conformity’, which should contain:
- product model, type, batch or serial number(s) to which the declaration of conformity applies (for traceability purposes)
- the name and address of the manufacturer or their authorised representative
- a description of the electrical equipment (may include a colour image where necessary for the identification of the electrical equipment)
- a reference to the harmonised standards used to assess compliance (if no harmonised standard, then a reference to other specifications)
- identification of the person who will enter into commitments on behalf of the manufacturer or authorised representative (if appropriate)
- the place and date of issue
Compile and hold technical documentation, which should contain:
- a general description of the electrical equipment
- the conceptual design, manufacturing drawings, details of components, etc along with information to help interpretation of these
- a list of the standards with which the electrical equipment complies; or, if standards were not used, a description of what has been done to ensure compliance with the general safety requirement
- results and reports of tests, examinations, calculations, etc
Obligations of importers & distributors
Importers must not place any electrical equipment on the market unless they have assurances that it complies with the principal safety objectives and ensure that the manufacturers have met all their obligations in relation to conformity assessment procedures, technical documentation, CE marking and labelling requirements. This must be made available to an enforcing authority on request.
Importers must also indicate on the electrical equipment their name or registered trade mark and a postal address at which they can be contacted. If it is not possible to put all the information on the equipment itself, importers can put their full name or trademark and details on the packaging instead.
Distributors have a responsibility to ensure that instructions and safety information accompany the electrical equipment before placing it on the market. They must also check with the importer that the manufacturer of the electrical equipment has met their obligations with regard to the labelling requirements. Distributors must check that the electrical equipment bears a label that correctly identifies the importer.
Obligations of manufacturers & importers
Manufacturers and importers have additional obligations; they must:
- carry out sample testing of electrical equipment made available on the market
- investigate and keep a register of complaints, of non-conforming electrical equipment and electrical equipment recalls
- keep distributors informed of any such monitoring
Who should keep the documentation?
The declaration of conformity and the technical documentation must be kept and be available for inspection by enforcement bodies (including trading standards) by:
- the manufacturer, if they are in the EEA
- their authorised representative, if they are outside the EEA
- if neither of the above, the importer into the EEA
These must be kept for a period of 10 years beginning on the day on which the electrical equipment is placed on the market.
Safe connection for domestic electrical equipment
If the electrical equipment is a plug-in device (such as a charger) intended to be connected, without the use of a mains lead or plug, directly to the United Kingdom public electricity supply via a socket outlet conforming to BS 1363: A plugs, socket-outlets, adaptors and connection units, the economic operator must ensure that the plug-in device is compatible with socket outlets conforming to BS 1363.
Where the electrical equipment has a flexible lead and plug assembly, such as a vacuum cleaner, and is intended to be connected to the United Kingdom public electricity supply by means of a socket outlet conforming to BS 1363, the economic operator must ensure that that plug is a correctly fitted standard plug fitted with a BS 1362 fuse, or is a correctly fitted non-UK plug conforming to the safety provisions of IEC 884-1 and correctly fitted with a compatible conversion plug.
Other CE-marking regulations that may apply
- Medical Devices Regulations 2002 (further information is available from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, telephone 020 3080 6000)
- Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008
- Toys (Safety) Regulations 2011 (also contain a general safety requirement)
- Electromagnetic Compatibility Regulations 2016 (contain provisions prohibiting electromagnetic emissions from electrical equipment interfering with the operation of other equipment)
- Radio Equipment Regulations 2017
Failure to comply with trading standards law can lead to enforcement action and to sanctions, which may include a fine and/or imprisonment.
The information is intended for guidance only; only the courts can give you an authoritative interpretation of the law.
This guidance is for England, Scotland & Wales
Consumer products must be ‘safe’. Safety can be assessed by the application of standards; if the product complies with a harmonised European standard, it is automatically taken to be safe. This is known as a presumption of conformity.
The General Product Safety Regulations 2005 (GPSR) provide the main basis for ensuring the safety of consumer goods by imposing certain controls. These ensure that all products intended for or likely to be used by consumers under normal or reasonably foreseeable conditions are safe.
As a manufacturer, own-brander or importer of consumer goods (all of which are termed a ‘producer’ under the Regulations) you will have certain obligations, including traceability and monitoring requirements.
Where a product is already subject to other existing regulations (for example, toys) then those regulations will apply to that product; the GPSR do not apply to the safety of a product where there are specific provisions of European Union (EU) law governing all aspects of its safety. As such, they operate as a kind of ‘mop-up’ set of regulations.
However, the GPSR will apply where they go further than the existing regulations in terms of the specific aspects of safety covered and the extent of the obligations on producers. The GPSR apply to all products intended for or likely to be used by consumers (even if not intended for them) that are supplied or made available; the test would be whether a consumer can purchase the product without challenge. This includes products supplied or made available to consumers for their own use in the course of a service – for example, gym equipment for use in a gym, high chairs provided for use by diners in a restaurant and trolleys for use by shoppers.
Unlike sector-specific laws the GPSR do not permit CE marking but do require that producers only supply safe products.
The following types of consumer goods would fall within the GPSR:
- children’s articles, such as cots, prams, high chairs, bunk beds
- household goods, such as crockery, cutlery, cooking utensils
- DIY tools
- furniture and soft furnishings
- candles and other ornaments
- hobby and art materials
If there are aspects of safety under GPSR that are not covered by the products’ own sector-specific regulations – such as electrical equipment – then the GPSR aspects will also apply.
The Regulations also cover products that were originally designed and intended for professional use but subsequently ‘migrate’ on to the consumer market (such as certain power tools). Where consumers can acquire professional products, they must be treated as ‘consumer goods’.
Where it is reasonably foreseeable that a professional product may find its way on to the consumer market (intended or not) suitable instructions for consumer use and warnings of any risks that are not obvious must be provided. However, where it is unlikely that the product could ever be safe for use by consumers, producers should take such steps as are reasonable and necessary to ensure the marketing and supply of the product is very strictly controlled. Labelling a product ‘for professional use only’ (or similar) is unlikely to be sufficient on its own unless, for example, it can only be purchased through a strict ‘trade only’ outlet.
Defining a safe product
A safe product is one that does not present any unnecessary risk to anyone when the product is used in a normal or reasonably foreseeable way. In assessing the safety of products, you must take account of (among other things):
- the packaging, all accompanying instructions and any other labelling
- the effect of the product on other products with which it may be foreseeably used
- the special needs of particular classes of person, especially children
A framework for assessing safety
The Regulations set out a ‘hierarchy’ that must be taken into account when the safety of a product is being assessed.
The Regulations refer to a ‘presumption of conformity’: “Where a product conforms to a voluntary national standard of the United Kingdom giving effect to a European standard … the product shall be presumed to be a safe product so far as concerns the risks and categories of risk covered by that national standard.”
These standards are referred to as ‘harmonised’, an example being European standard BS EN 14682: Safety of children’s clothing. Cords and drawstrings on children’s clothing. Specifications. They give a presumption of conformity.
Where no published standards giving a presumption of conformity exist, the safety of a product will be assessed by taking into account:
- voluntary European standards or standards drawn up in the UK
- industry codes of good practice
- the state of the art and technology
- reasonable consumer expectations concerning safety
Producers therefore need to keep abreast of such matters as they relate to their business, such as amendments to harmonised standards, and technological and safety developments
Finally, the Regulations’ “reasonable consumer expectations concerning safety” will require some elements of risk assessment and putting quality systems into place to ensure products are made in compliance with specification.
The main obligation on a producer is to supply a safe product.
As a producer you must also provide consumers with relevant information to enable them to:
- assess the risk inherent in a product throughout the period of its use (where such risks are not immediately obvious)
- take precautions against those risks
This means clear, legible durable warnings and instructions.
Producers must also allow for traceability by indicating on the product or its packaging:
- the name and address of the producer
- the product reference or, where applicable, the batch of products to which it belongs
Also, to enable you to become aware of risks the product might present you should:
- sample test marketed products
- investigate and if necessary keep a register of complaints concerning the safety of the product
- keep distributors informed of the results of such monitoring where a product presents a risk or may present a risk
As a result of the monitoring undertaken where you discover that a product you are placing on the market or have already supplied poses risks to the consumer and is unsafe, you must immediately, in writing, notify your local trading standards service of:
- that information
- the action taken to prevent risk to the consumer
- the identity of each Member State in which it has been marketed or supplied (this applies when the product is being, or has been, marketed or otherwise supplied to consumers outside the United Kingdom)
In the event of a serious risk the notification must include the following:
- information enabling a precise identification of the product or batch of products in question
- a full description of the risks that the product presents
- all available information relevant for tracing the product
- a description of the action undertaken to prevent risks to the consumer
The authorities will advise on actions aimed at removal of the risk and work with you on completing the notification.
Risk assessment is a procedure for identifying and assessing hazards, consisting of three steps:
- identify the hazard that is intrinsic and determine how serious it is (injury scenario)
- determine the probability of injury
- combine the hazard with the probability to determine risk
Using the model the resultant risk level may be ‘serious’, ‘high’, ‘medium’ and ‘low’
In order to assist in assessing the risk the European Commission has produced guidance; the method is outlined, along with associated tables, in Commission Decision 2010/15/EU.
It is an offence under the GPSR not to fulfil these obligations.
Enforcement action by the authorities
Where producers have not fulfilled their obligations under these Regulations, enforcement authorities have access to a range of measures that can be employed in removing risk to consumer safety. These are known as safety notices. They are only used when voluntary actions have not removed the risk.
All parties concerned must, whenever feasible, be given an opportunity to submit their views before the adoption of a measure.
The measure chosen will be proportionate to the seriousness of the risk.
Where there may have been a breach of the Regulations, these notices temporarily ban the placing on the market or the supply of a product while tests are undertaken and the results are awaited.
Requirement to mark / requirement to warn
These powers allow an enforcement authority to order the marking of a product with suitable warnings where it could pose risks in certain conditions, or require that specific warnings be given to certain persons considered to be at particular risk from a product (for example, young children, the elderly, etc).
Enforcement authorities can issue a withdrawal notice to permanently prevent a person from further supplying a product that is believed to be dangerous where it is already on the market (if the voluntary action taken by producers and distributors is insufficient or unsatisfactory).
Where an enforcement authority has reasonable grounds for believing that a dangerous product has already been made available to consumers and voluntary action falls short of that considered necessary and sufficient to remove the risk, a last resort (that is, no other measure available to the authority will suffice) power to serve a recall notice exists. This will require the person it is served on to take such steps as are identified in the notice to organise the return of the product from consumers.
Where a disagreement exists between the authority and the producer over whether recall is necessary, businesses may require the authority to seek a reasoned opinion on the case for recall under a scheme operated by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators set up by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) specifically for the purpose. The cost of the scheme is to be met by the business that requested its use. Enforcement authorities are expected to take account of the advice received when coming to a final decision on whether or not to serve a recall notice.
There are codes of practice on recall, which may assist in determining the nature and scope of a recall action. Consumer Product Safety in Europe: Corrective Action Guideis available from the PROSAFE website. Additionally PAS 7100: Code of practice on consumer product safety related recalls and other corrective actions – which can be downloaded for free from the BSI (British Standards Institution) website – is a guide on recalls and corrective actions and in particular gives good advice on preparing a product incident plan so when an incident happens your business is prepared.
Forfeiture & destruction
Where products are dangerous the enforcement authority may apply to the court for an order for their forfeiture and destruction. However, as an alternative to destruction the court may, on condition that any order to pay the costs and expenses of the proceedings is complied with, permit the supply of the product to a person for repair or reconditioning or for scrap.
Different obligations under the GPSR apply to retailers and wholesalers of consumer goods whose actions do not affect the safety of the goods (termed a ‘distributor’ under the Regulations).
Failure to comply with trading standards law can lead to enforcement action and to sanctions, which may include a fine and/or imprisonment.
The information is intended for guidance only; only the courts can give you an authoritative interpretation of the law.
This guidance is for England, Scotland & Wales
Electrically assisted pedal cycles (EAPCs) – which are also known as electrically power assisted cycles (EPACs) and e-bikes – have become increasingly popular in recent years as a means of transport. As they can be made available at affordable prices, concerns have been raised about their safety, particularly as they have been developed by enthusiasts, adapting ordinary pedal cycles and then supplying to consumers as a growing cottage industry.
When assessing the safety of a product a number of matters are taken into consideration and anyone in the supply chain, including retailers, can be held liable for the supply of unsafe products.
The law requires that any product sold to consumers must be safe. Products should not present any unnecessary risk to anyone when used in a normal or reasonably foreseeable way. When assessing the safety of a product, the following must be taken into account:
- packaging, labelling and instructions
- effect of the product on other products with which it might be used
- special needs of particular types of people, such as elderly people or those with disabilities
Where there are national, European or international standards relating to the product, these standards will also need to be taken into account. Not all personal light electric vehicles are approved for use in the same way. EAPCs are a particular type of motorised or electric vehicle designed for carrying persons and goods; they have their own set of regulations and standards governing their safety.
EAPCs are vehicles that are essentially two- or three-wheeled cycles with the following definitions:
- cycle must be fitted with pedals that are capable of propelling it
- continuous rated power of the electric motor must not exceed 250 W
- electrical assistance must cut-off when the cycle reaches 15.5 m/h or 25 km/h
An EAPC that complies with the above is not considered to be a motor vehicle within the meaning of the Road Traffic Act 1988. As a result, it is not required to be registered and is not subject to vehicle excise duty (road tax), nor does it have to be insured as a motor vehicle. EAPCs must not be ridden by anyone under the age of 14.
There are essentially two other types of vehicle that are like EAPCs. One type is the ‘twist and go’ cycle that may have particular benefits for elderly and disabled users. These pedal cycles provide electrical assistance without the use of pedals and are defined in EU Regulation (EU) No 168/2013 on the approval and market surveillance of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles as L1e-A powered cycles. These cycles, provided that they do not exceed 1,000 W, but have a power assistance cut out of 15.5 m/h, do not need to be registered with DVLA, but still require type approval, which means that they have to pass certain safety standards. The other type are pedal assisted cycles that exceed the 25 km/h or 15.5 m/h, and are classed in EU Regulation (EU) No 168/2013 as L1e-B vehicles, commonly known as speed pedelecs or s-pedelecs. These are required to be registered with DVLA, taxed and insured to be legal for road use. Those with power assistance restricted to 45 km/h are in the same class as mopeds for the purposes of satisfying the requirements of DVLA and are not EAPCs.
The Department for Transport is aware that there are electric bikes limited to 15.5 m/h, but are fitted with off-road switches or modes that enable the bike’s motor to continue assisting at speeds beyond 15.5 m/h. These are also not EAPCs, and can only be used on roads if they are registered and comply with DVLA requirements.
Anyone in the supply chain, including retailers, can be held liable for the supply of unsafe products. In general, it is a criminal offence to supply unsafe products and you could also be liable to pay compensation for any injury or property-damage caused.
You should be prepared to carry out checks on the product and/or on your suppliers to ensure that they meet the appropriate product safety requirements. Doing nothing is not enough.
Special safety requirements
The Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles Regulations 1983 and the Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles (Amendment) Regulations 2015 apply to EAPCs designed for use on roads in the UK and the European Union. These Regulations are UK implementing Regulations that align the safety requirements with Regulation (EU) No 168/2013.
Manufacturers, their representatives, and importers have to ensure that, when their cycles, systems, components or separate technical components are placed on the market or are entering into service, they are manufactured and approved in accordance with the requirements set out in the Regulations.
Manufacturers are required to equip EAPCs with battery management systems / master control devices that prevent tampering or modification, so as not to prejudice safety by enabling the cycle’s performance to increase torque, power or maximum speed limits.
Anyone in the supply chain that modifies an incomplete cycle in such a way that it then qualifies for a different category of vehicle or cycle, with the consequence that the legal requirements for the vehicle have changed, is also responsible for the type approval and conformity necessary for that category. This includes the instructions given to consumers concerning the legal and safe use of the vehicle, in particular the type of personal protective equipment that may be appropriate.
To be ridden legally on the road, EAPCs must also:
- have pedals that are capable of propelling it
- the battery must not leak so as to be a source of danger
- the power switch or control must default to ‘off’, requiring constant intervention from the rider in order to maintain power assistance
- the power output and road speed must not exceed the limits set out in the Regulations.
The Regulations include requirements for EAPCs on brake construction and performance. The Regulations require EAPCs to be marked with the:
- name of the manufacturer of the vehicle
- nominal voltage of the battery of the vehicle
- continuous rated output of the motor of the vehicle
- maximum speed at which the motor can propel the vehicle
Particular safety concerns
The current European standard for EAPCs is BS EN 15194: Cycles. Electrically power assisted cycles. EPAC Bicycles. This standard was published for implementation from 28 February 2018 and is aligned to meet the regulatory requirements for construction and use as well as the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008
As well as strength tests, BS EN 15194 requires safety measures that relate to the general safety of EAPCs, including:
- sharp edges
- security and strength of safety-related fasteners
- front fork
- wheels and wheel / tyre assembly
- rims, tyres and tubes
- front mudguard
- pedals and pedal / crank drive system
- drive-chain and drive belt
- chain-wheel and belt-drive protective device
- saddles and seat-posts
- spoke protector
- luggage carriers
- road-test of a fully-assembled EAPC
- lighting systems and reflectors
- warning device
- thermal hazards
- the EAPC and battery pack must be designed in order to avoid risk of fire and mechanical deterioration resulting from abnormal use
- during the test the EAPC and the batteries must not emit flames, molten metal or poisonous ignitable gas in hazardous amounts and any enclosure must show no damage that could impair compliance with BS EN 15194
- safety and compatibility of the battery / charger combination must be ensured, according to the manufacturer’s specifications
- the battery terminals must be protected against creating an accidental short circuit
- appropriate care must be taken to ensure that the batteries are protected against overcharging
- an appropriate overheating and short circuit protection device must be fitted
- batteries and the charger unit must be labelled in order to be able to check their compatibility
Labelling requirements, instructions & warnings
Since the publication of the BS EN 15194 standard, EAPCs are required to be labelled with:
- contact and address of the manufacturer or authorized representative
- EAPC according to BS EN 15194
- appropriate marking required by legislation (CE)
- year of construction – that is, the year in which the manufacturing was completed (it is not possible to use a code)
- cut off speed expressed as XX km/h
- maximum continuous rated power XX kW
- maximum permissible total weight – for example, marked near the seat post or handlebar
- designation of series or type
- individual serial number if any
- mass if EAPCs mass is more than 25 kg
- mass of the EAPCs in the most usual configuration
The frame must be marked with:
- a successive frame number at a readily visible location – for example, near the pedal-crank, the seat-post or the handlebar
- the name of the manufacturer of the complete EAPCs or the manufacturer’s representative and the reference to European Standard BS EN 15194
- the type number or identification number
There are additional markings that are required if the EAPC is equipped with a coupling device for a trailer. There are also recommendations for safety-critical components to be marked with traceable identification. You should seek the advice of your local trading standards service if you need more information.
All markings should be clear and permanent in accordance with specifications set out in the standard.
As well as labelling requirements EAPCs must be supplied with a set of instructions for use relevant to the country in which the EAPC is destined to be supplied. The standard states that it is obligatory to deliver these in paper form, along with more detailed information to enable access for vulnerable people. Instructions for use should be available additionally in electronic form on demand. The standard also stipulates that the instructions for use cover all aspects of the safe use of the EAPC, including preparation and making adjustments for riding, maintenance, charging the batteries, and safe riding, as well as warnings related to wear-and-tear and impact damage.
The Regulations also place an obligation for manufacturers and importers that place EAPCs on the market to:
- ensure that the technical documentation is compiled and made available in accordance with the requirements
- provide information as necessary to operate it safely, such as instructions for use, repair and maintenance
- follow appropriate conformity assessment procedures as prescribed by the Regulations
- ensure that there is an EC declaration of conformity undertaken by the manufacturer
The CE mark is placed on a product by the manufacturer as confirmation that it complies with all the relevant safety standards. All electrical products require CE marking in accordance with the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008, and (where relevant) the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 2016.
The position for retailers
Retailers may not have the same degree of technical knowledge and expertise as a manufacturer or importer; however, they may be able to carry out certain checks on the safety of EAPCs.
Retailers should ensure that each vehicle is supplied with adequate written instructions. Reliance on verbal instructions only would make it very difficult to prove what you have said and may not reach the end user (if the EAPC is a gift, for example). Instructions for maintenance are particularly important to pass on in written format as they will be relied on for safe use for the entire expected life of the product. If there are parts of the instructions that have a particular relevance to safety, you may wish to highlight them.
You should also examine each vehicle before you supply it and carry out basic checks – for example:
- all fixings, nuts and bolts are correctly and securely fastened
- the frame is not damaged
- the condition and inflation of tyres
- brakes are working effectively
- no sharp edges and entrapment hazards
- ensure that the steering is aligned
- ensure that you can supply full instructions for use
You may wish to offer advice on the appropriate safety equipment that needs to be used with the EAPC – for example, a cycle helmet and suitable clothing – and to offer to supply this equipment. Any such advice should also be included in the written instructions. It is worth noting that the safety equipment approved for use for an EAPC, such as ordinary cycle helmets, will be insufficient for the more powerful or off-road electrical cycles.
Other electrical cycles as well as EAPCs are supplied with rechargeable batteries and chargers. Currently chargers must be compliant with the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 2016 as well as being compatible with the batteries. There are harmonised safety standards for both batteries and chargers that are currently applicable to all electrical cycles, as well as the 2017 standard that will apply to EAPCs after 28 February 2018.
Under the Consumer Rights Act 2015, the goods you sell must be of satisfactory quality, fit for their purpose and as described. A consumer may expect to have to carry out some maintenance and replace some parts over time. EAPCs would be expected to be sufficiently robust to use on UK roads for a reasonable service life. Electric cycles intended to be ridden off-road should be robust enough to provide a reasonable service life over rough terrain.
If an electric cycle or EAPC fails prematurely, the consumer may be entitled to claim their losses from the retailer. This could include a repair, replacement, full or partial refund and/or compensation.
If the manufacturer offers a guarantee, remember that this does not take away a consumer’s rights. Your consumer may still have a claim against you even after the manufacturer’s guarantee has expired.
Legal & illegal use of EAPCs & other electrical cycles: information for your consumers
The law only permits those electrical cycles that fall into the classification of EAPCs to be used on the public highway. Electrical cycles suitable only for off-road use cannot be used on the public highway. Furthermore, under the Road Traffic Act 1988 (and related legislation) they cannot be used anywhere off-road, except on private land with the landowner’s permission.
Consumers may not be fully aware of the legal restrictions that apply to the use of off-road electrical cycles. They may well be disappointed if they buy an electrical cycle, expecting to be able to ride it on a local park or common, only to find out later that they cannot do so. It would therefore be advisable to check with your consumer, at least in general terms, what they wish to use the electrical cycle for, and only supply an electrical cycle or EAPC that is suitable for their intended use.
Under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (CPRs), retailers are obliged to disclose information that might affect a consumer’s decision to buy, even if the consumer does not ask for it. You should therefore make it clear to prospective customers that the electrical cycle or EAPC that they buy may have restrictions on its use or capability, and to advise them to only purchase one that meets their requirements.
Trading standards services are aware of a number of cases where pedal cycles are being converted into either EAPCs or off-road electric cycles. Some of these have been badged with the registered name of a manufacturer or even the name of a famous motorcycle manufacturer, even though that manufacturer had no involvement in their production.
If you are offered the chance to supply such vehicles, you should check with the manufacturer’s UK representatives to find out whether the vehicles are genuine, and whether you need their consent to keep the badge or remove it.
Anyone supplying counterfeit cycles should be reported to trading standards. The products might also be dangerous.
Outside the scope of this guide
If you are importing EAPCs or other electric cycles into the EU, to sell at retail or wholesale, you may need to take specialist advice from your local trading standards service, an accredited test house or a notified body that can test this type of product.
Failure to comply with trading standards law can lead to enforcement action and to sanctions, which may include a fine and/or imprisonment.
EU Regulation (EU) No 168/2013 on the approval and market surveillance of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles
The information is intended for guidance only; only the courts can give you an authoritative interpretation of the law.
This guidance is for England
This guidance relates to prepacked food only.
‘Prepacked food’ is defined in EU Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 on the provision of food information to consumers as “… food and the packaging into which it was put before being offered for sale, whether such packaging encloses the food completely or only partially, but in any event in such a way that the contents cannot be altered without opening or changing the packaging …”.
The definition of prepacked does not cover food packed on the sales premises at the consumer’s request; nor does it cover food that is sold from the premises on which it was packed or from a mobile stall or vehicle used by the packer (referred to as ‘prepacked for direct sale’).
The following information is mandatory on prepacked foods:
- the name of the food
- an ingredient list
- information relating to allergenic ingredients
- quantitative ingredient declarations (QUID)
- a nutritional declaration
- durability date marking
- a net quantity declaration
- the name and address of the manufacturer
- storage instructions (where required)
- instructions for use (where required)
- origin marking (if the label would be misleading without it)
- alcoholic strength (for beverages containing more than 1.2% by volume)
Mandatory information must be clear, legible and indelible. It must be presented on the packaging, on a label attached to the packaging or on a label visible through the packaging.
Mandatory information cannot be hidden in any way; therefore having the information on parts of the packaging that need to be peeled up, unfolded, are only visible when the product is open, etc is not permitted for mandatory information. You can still use these types of packaging but none of the mandatory information can be on them.
Mandatory information must be large enough to be legible so there is a minimum font size of an x-height of 1.2 mm that can be used, which means that the lower-case x for whatever font size you are using cannot be smaller than 1.2 mm. This is approximately font size 8 in Times New Roman but will differ from font to font.
In the case of very small products (those whose largest surface is less than 80 cm2) the x-height is reduced to 0.9 mm (approximately font size 6 in Times New Roman).
Mandatory information must be indelible, so you must use ink that will not run or rub off. This is especially important when you are writing use-by and best-before dates by hand; choose a pen that will not run.
All mandatory information must be in English although you can include labelling in other languages in addition to English labelling.
It is common for manufacturers to include large amounts of information that is not required by law (descriptions of the taste, for example); this is referred to as ‘voluntary information’.
You can include as much voluntary information as you please, provided it is not false or misleading; however, you cannot do so at the expense of mandatory information. If you find that you have no room for mandatory information (or would have to use a too-small font size or not use the required format) because you have given label space over to voluntary information then you will need to either remove or reduce the voluntary information.
You will need to draw consumers’ attention to any allergenic ingredients that are present in the food.
Most prepacked food will require a durability date; either a use-by or a best-before date depending on the nature of the food and how long it can be expected to stay edible.
Name & address
Prepacked food is required to bear a name and address of a food business operator (FBO) based in the European Union (EU) that takes responsibility for the food.
The appropriate name and address is normally that of the manufacturer but could also be that of an importer.
If the product is marketed under the name of a food business other than the manufacturer then the name and address of that business should appear on the product. Therefore, if you manufacture goods for another business to sell under their name then you will need to put their details on the label.
The food business under whose name the food is marketed is the business that is ultimately responsible for the food.
The name must be that of the appropriate legal entity (sole trader, limited company, etc) and the address must be a postal address in the EU that is sufficiently detailed for legal documents to reach the business.
Depending on the size of the business or location (on an industrial estate, for example) it may be sufficient to have just a postcode; alternatively a full address may be required.
You may provide a supplementary email address / web address / telephone number, but these must be in addition to a postal address.
If you are a small trader manufacturing from home and do not wish to use your home address you may alternatively use:
- a Post Office Box (PO box)
- the address of a legal professional in your employ (solicitor, accountant, etc) with their permission. You should state the name of the food business followed by the address in question
All prepacked foods (other than a few exemptions covered below) are required to have a net quantity indication.
‘Net quantity’ means the weight of food (or volume in the case of liquids), less the weight of the packaging.
The indication must be given in kilograms or grams for solids, and in litres, centilitres or millilitres for liquids (metric indication).
The net quantity must be in the same field of vision as the name of the product and the alcoholic strength where appropriate (this means the consumer must be able to hold the product so that all the information is visible at the same time).
You may provide a supplementary net quantity in imperial measurements (pounds, ounces, fluid ounces, etc) but the indication must not be given greater prominence than the metric net quantity.
If a prepacked product contains multiple identical prepacked products (a multipack of crisps, for example) you must state the net quantity of the individual product and how many products the pack contains – for example, ‘Ready salted crisps’ ‘6 x 25 g’.
If the number of products and the net quantity printed on the individual product is visible through the packaging then this does not apply.
Products containing multiple different items
If a product contains multiple items, none of which are intended to be sold separately, you should declare the combined net weight and state how many individual packages are in the product – for example, a home baking kit: ‘300 g product contains: sponge mix, icing mix, six cupcake wrappers’.
Products in liquid
If the product is in a liquid medium (fruit juice, water, brine, etc) that needs to be removed prior to consuming the food then you must also state the drained weight of the product.
- ‘Tuna chunks in brine’ ‘160 g / 120 g’
- ‘Tuna chunks in brine’ ‘160 g – drained weight 120 g’
If the product is in a glaze (ice, sugar, salt, etc) then the net quantity is the weight without the glaze.
The following do not need a net quantity declaration:
- goods that are subject to considerable losses in their volume or mass and are sold by number or weighed in the presence of the purchaser
- products with a net quantity of less than 5 g or 5 ml (although herbs and spices do require a net quantity declaration)
- goods normally sold by number and the number can be seen and counted from the outside, or the number is printed on the outside
You will only need to include storage instructions if they are necessary to ensure that the food continues to be edible and maintains its quality until the durability date that you have put on the food – for example, ‘Keep refrigerated’, ‘Store in a cool dry place’, ‘Refrigerate after opening’.
Storage instructions should be close to either the durability date or instructions on where the durability date can be found – for example, ‘For best-before see base of pack – refrigerate after opening’.
Instructions for use
You will only need to include instructions for use if the consumer would find it difficult to use the product correctly without them; examples include cooking times for ready meals that need to be cooked in a microwave and mixing instructions for powdered products.
There are no specific requirements but instructions for use should be clear and not misleading.
Country or place of origin
Origin labelling will only be required in the following circumstances.
Consumers might be misled if you don’t state the origin.
The whole product must be considered when deciding whether the label is misleading. Examples include:
- descriptions – for example, ‘Traditional Italian recipe’ may mislead consumers into thinking the product originated in Italy
- designs – for example, a St George cross may mislead consumers into thinking the product originated in England
- colours – for example, red white and blue stripes may mislead consumers into thinking the product originated in France
If the label is potentially misleading you must state the country or place of origin of the product – for example, ‘Product of England’.
Where a country or place of origin has been named but the primary ingredient is from somewhere else.
‘Primary ingredient’ means an ingredient that makes up 50% or more of the product or is usually associated with the product by the consumer – for example, ‘Swedish meatballs made with British pork and beef’; in this case the description ‘Swedish’ relates to the recipe rather than the origin of the meat.
In cases such as this you must either:
- state the country or place of origin of the primary ingredient
- state that the country or place or origin of the primary ingredient is different to the origin of the product
- ‘Swedish meatballs’ ‘Made using UK pork and beef’
- ‘Swedish meatballs’ ‘Meat produced in the EU’
- ‘Swedish meatballs’ ‘Using meat produced in countries other than Sweden’
Where the primary ingredient is sourced from multiple countries you do not need to list them all but any statement you make must not be misleading – for example, ‘Product of various countries’ or ‘Product of meat from EU countries’.
Other specific labelling requirements
Specific information must be given for any product:
- packaged in a protective atmosphere
- containing glycyrrhizinic acid or its ammonium salt (products containing liquorice)
- with a high caffeine content
- containing added phytosterols, phytosterol esters, phytostanols or phytostanol esters
Please refer to annex III of EU Regulation (EU) 1169/2011 (see link in ‘Key legislation’below).
Selling food over the internet
If you sell food over the internet you will need to provide full prepacked labelling information on both the website and the product.
The information should appear on the same page as the product and be available to the consumer before they make a purchase.
You do not have to include the durability date.
EU Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 on the provision of food information to consumers
This guidance is for England, Scotland & Wales
Cosmetics are subject to legal definition and products used solely as medicines are excluded. EU Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 on cosmetic products makes it an offence to supply a cosmetic product that may cause damage to human health or that contains specific restricted or prohibited substances.
It is also an offence to supply an incorrectly labelled cosmetic product. The labelling requirements include the name and address of the manufacturer / importer, the ingredients, durability marking, function and precautions.
Finally, it is an offence not to undertake certain safety assessments and not to compile technical documentation.
There are also restrictions on animal testing of products.
The EU Regulation is enforced by trading standards in the UK by the Cosmetic Products Enforcement Regulations 2013.
What is a cosmetic product?
EU Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 (referred to in this guide as ‘the Regulation’) defines a cosmetic product as: “any substance or mixture intended to be placed in contact with the external parts of the human body (epidermis, hair system, nails, lips and external genital organs) or with the teeth and the mucous membranes of the oral cavity with a view exclusively or mainly to cleaning them, perfuming them, changing their appearance, protecting them, keeping them in good condition or correcting body odours“.
The Regulation relates only to cosmetic products and not to medicinal products, medical devices or biocidal products.
A substance or mixture intended to be ingested, inhaled, injected or implanted into the human body is not a cosmetic product.
What about aromatherapy products?
These can be medicines, cosmetic products, or neither of these, depending on their intended use. If they are not medicines or cosmetic products, they are governed by the General Product Safety Regulations 2005.
Please ask your local trading standards service if you require more guidance on aromatherapy products.
It is an offence for a responsible person to supply a cosmetic product that may cause damage to human health when applied under normal or reasonably foreseeable conditions of use, taking into account:
- its presentation and in particular, its form, odour, colour, appearance, packaging, labelling, volume or size should not endanger health and safety of consumers due to confusion with foodstuffs
- its labelling
- any instructions for its use and disposal
- any other information provided by the responsible person
The responsible person can be one of the following:
- the manufacturer within the EU (or they can nominate someone else in writing to be the responsible person)
- a person in the EU designated by written mandate by a manufacturer that is outside the EU, but has the product manufactured in the EU
- a distributor, where they place a cosmetic product on the market under their name or trademark, or modify a product already placed on the market in such a way that compliance with the applicable requirements may be affected – for example, repackaging or relabelling
- the importer (established in the EU who places a product from a country outside the Union on the Union market)
Rules on animal testing
It is an offence to test a finished cosmetic product or an ingredient on an animal in order that the product may comply with the requirements of the Regulation.
The Regulation also restricts the supply of cosmetic products whose final formulation, or any ingredient or combination of ingredients, have been tested on animals.
Where a claim is made that a cosmetic product has not been tested on animals, this must be correct. In particular, the manufacturer or supplier must not have tested or commissioned tests on animals of the finished product, its prototype or any of their ingredients. The cosmetic product must also not contain any ingredients that have been tested on animals by others for the purpose of developing new cosmetic products.
The rules on what may and may not be used as an ingredient, and the rules on restricted use and special precautions, are too detailed to be included here. If you require this information, you should make reference to the annexes of the Regulation (see ‘Key legislation’ below for link) or you should seek specialist advice.
Marking / labelling
The following information must be given on the packaging or labelling:
Name & address
The name and address of the responsible person established within a Member State must be on the container and the packaging. Where the product is manufactured outside the European Economic Area (EEA), the country of origin must also be given.
Where a cosmetic product has a minimum durability of 30 months or less, it must be marked on the container and the packaging with a best-before date or the symbol shown below.
The indication must be in the form ‘Best used before the end of’, followed by the date (day / month / year, or month / year) or an indication of where the date appears on the packaging. If any particular conditions must be observed to guarantee the stated durability, these must also be described.
Where a product has a shelf life of more than 30 months, it must be marked with the symbol shown below together with an indication (in months, or years and months) of the period after opening for which the product can be used without harming the consumer.
Precautions to be observed in use, as shown in the annexes of the Regulation, must be printed on the label. Special precautionary information on cosmetic products for professional use, such as in hairdressing, must appear on the container and packaging.
The batch number of manufacture or the reference for identifying the goods.
If not otherwise obvious from design and packaging.
The package in which the cosmetic product is supplied must bear a list of ingredients, headed ‘Ingredients’ (see note below), in descending order of weight, determined at the time the ingredient was added to the product.
All cosmetic products marketed in any part of the EU have to be labelled with a list of their ingredients, irrespective of the channel of distribution. This requirement also applies to imported products, professional products, free samples, tester samples, multi-component products, products sold by mail order or via the internet, and products provided in hotels and other public facilities.
You do not need to include any of the following as ingredients:
- impurities in the raw materials
- materials used in the preparation of, but not present in, the final product
- materials used as solvents or carriers for perfumes and aromatic compositions
Perfume and aromatic compositions and their raw materials must be referred to as ‘perfume’ (see note below) or ‘aroma’ unless a more specific indication of their presence is required in annex III of the Regulation.
Ingredients in concentrations of less than 1% may be listed in any order after those of 1% or more.
Colouring agents may be listed in any order after the other ingredients. For decorative cosmetics marketed in various colours, all colouring agents in the range may be listed so long as the words ‘may contain’ or the symbol ‘+/-‘ is also used.
The ingredient name must be that listed in the International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients (INCI) or, if no such name is listed, one of the following:
- chemical name
- European Pharmacopoeia name
- International Non-proprietary Name (INN), as recommended by the World Health Organisation
- European Inventory of Existing Commercial chemical Substances (EINECS), International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), or Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) identification reference
- colour index number
A database of INCI names is available on the Europa website.
All ingredients present in the form of nanomaterials must be clearly indicated in the list of ingredients. The names of such ingredients must be followed by the word ‘nano’ in brackets.
There is a procedure detailed in the Regulation that, subject to agreement, allows the confidentiality of some ingredients to be maintained.
For consistency across the EEA, the following conventions have been agreed by Cosmetics Europe (the European cosmetics industry trade association). Firstly, the word ‘ingredients’ should be given in capital letters, and secondly, the word ‘perfume’ should be replaced by ‘parfum’. Although these conventions do not have the force of law, their use will be accepted by UK enforcement authorities. If you are exporting cosmetic products to other EEA countries, you should confirm that the authorities in those countries also accept this convention.
Additional information must be given where certain ingredients, such as preservatives and UV filters, are present. This information is specified in annexes III, IV, V, and VI of the Regulation.
All required information must be visible, indelible and easily legible. The ingredients list must be given in a language that is easily understood by the consumer. All of the other information must be in English and can be supplemented by other languages.
There is one set of rules about presentation for ingredients lists and another set for the other information.
The ingredients list must appear on the packaging or, if it is impossible to do so or there is no packaging, on the container. If the product is sold loose, the ingredients list can be given on the container in which the product is exposed for supply or on a notice. If this is not possible, the list can be given on a leaflet, label, tag, tape or card enclosed with or attached to the product, along with an indication referring the consumer to it (either by way of abbreviated information or the ‘hand and book’ symbol below). For small products such as soap and bath balls, a notice can be used instead of a leaflet, label, etc.
The other information must normally appear on both the container and the packaging. However, if it is not possible for the batch code to appear on the container, it can appear on the packaging only. Similarly, where there are practical constraints, the conditions for use may appear on a leaflet, label, tag, tape or card enclosed with or attached to the product, again with an indication referring the consumer to it.
In the case of loose cosmetic products other than soap, all of the information must be given on the container in which the product is exposed for supply, or on a notice in immediate proximity to the container.
The requirements on the ‘responsible person’
The manufacturer of cosmetic products must comply with good manufacturing practice. Compliance with good manufacturing practice can be presumed where the manufacture is in accordance with the relevant harmonised standards, the references of which have been published in the Official Journal of the European Union.
In order to demonstrate that a cosmetic product is safe the responsible person must ensure that the cosmetic product has undergone a safety assessment and that a cosmetic product safety report is produced. This safety assessment must be carried out by a person in possession of a diploma or other evidence of formal qualifications awarded on completion of a university course of theoretical and practical study in pharmacy, toxicology, medicine or a similar discipline, or a course recognised as equivalent by a Member State.
Where a cosmetic product is supplied or manufactured in the UK, the responsible person is required to keep certain product information at the registered office address or the address detailed on the product. This information must be easily accessible to the nominated authorities, generally the responsible person’s local trading standards service, and can be requested in the case of medical emergency. The information must be in English or another language easily understood by the nominated authority.
The product information file (PIF) must include all of the following:
- the qualitative and quantitative composition of the product. For perfume or perfume compositions in the product, you are only required to keep the name, code number and supplier identity. Qualitative information for all composites, and the quantitative information in relation to dangerous substances, must also be made easily available to the general public
- the physico-chemical and microbiological specifications of the raw materials and the finished product, and the purity and microbiological control criteria of the cosmetic product
- the method of manufacture, which must be in accordance with good manufacturing practice
- an assessment of safety for human health of the finished product, including the criteria as stipulated in the Regulation. There are additional criteria where the product is intended for use on children under three years old or exclusively for use in external intimate hygiene (see above)
- the name and address of the person or persons – with the minimum qualifications as detailed in the Regulation – who carried out the assessments
- existing data on the undesirable effects on human health resulting from use of the product. This information must also be made easily available to the general public
- evidence to justify any claims made by the product
- data on any animal testing performed by the manufacturer, their agents or suppliers, relating to the development or safety evaluation of the product or its ingredients
Prior to placing the cosmetic product on the market the responsible person must submit the following information to the European Commission through the Cosmetic Products Notification Portal (CPNP):
- the category of cosmetic product and its name or names, enabling its specific identification
- the name and address of the responsible person where the product information file is made readily accessible in the country of origin
- in the case of import into the Member State in which the cosmetic product is to be placed on the market, the contact details of a physical person to contact in the case of necessity
- the presence of substances in the form of nanomaterials and their identification
- the frame formulation allowing for prompt and appropriate medical treatment in the event of difficulties
When the cosmetic product is placed on the market, the responsible person must notify to the Commission the original labelling, and, where reasonably legible, a photograph of the corresponding packaging.
Responsible persons who consider or have reason to believe that a cosmetic product that they have placed on the market is not in conformity with this Regulation must immediately take the corrective measures necessary to bring that product into conformity, withdraw it or recall it, as appropriate. Where the cosmetic product presents a risk to human health, responsible persons must immediately inform their local trading standards service giving details, in particular, of the non-compliance and of the corrective measures taken.
Failure to comply with trading standards law can lead to enforcement action and to sanctions, which may include a fine and/or imprisonment. For more information please see ‘Trading standards: powers, enforcement & penalties’.
EU Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 on cosmetic products
Warehouse Team Member
Reporting Relationship: Warehouse Supervisor
This is a varied role in a fast-paced environment. You will be working in a close-knit team, so team working is an essential part of your job. There may be times when you will be working alone so self-motivation is required. You will be the required to assist in all aspects of the warehouse operation. The main duties will be to pick orders accurately, package items to customer requirements and dispatch timely. Keeping the warehouse clean tidy. You will need to have a positive attitude and a good sense of humour. The work can be quite physically demanding at times, with lifting of parcels that can be up to 20kgs, so a good state of health is required.
You will need a wide range of skills for this position including, accurate and professional data entry skills, excellent communication skills as this position requires the job holder to communicate with various departments ensuring swift and efficient responses to enquiries. Be vigilant and maintain company security and health and safety standards
Key skills include:
• Computer and scanning devices literacy,
• Customer Service.
Qualifications and experience
• Work experience in a warehouse environment is desirable but more importantly an enthusiastic approach and a mature attitude and a willingness to learn is imperative.
• Computer literacy, as demonstrated by previous experience and storeship data entry test,
• Experience of Customer Service,
• Strong interpersonal communication skills and the ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships,
• Effective communication skills both verbal and written.
This is a full-time permanent position. Hours are 37.5 per week + benefits + ongoing development. Additional hours may be required to meet deadlines.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS POSITION HAS NOW BEEN FILLED
Storeship Limited have a growing number of leads available for Fulfilment Houses to take advantage of.
Due to space, unsuitable or just not the sort of thing we deal in, Storeship obtain daily leads and have excess sales data available.
Please contact us for further information.
Below is an example of leads available:
Lead Number 1
Date received: 19th October 2017
Storage Required: 300 pallets
Number of Orders: 50 per day
Contact us to receive further details regarding this quote.
This tutorial explains how to add unique SKU’s (Stock Keeping Unit) a unique identifier for all your products to your eBay listings.
To enable the use of SKU on your eBay account you will need to use Selling Manager or Selling Manager Pro, Selling Manager is a free upgrade to accounts, you can upgrade using the following link: http://pages.ebay.co.uk/selling_manager
It can take a few hours once requested for Selling Manager to become active on your account.
Once Seller Manager is active you need to access it from your menu, once in seller manager
Select Edit -> Edit all Items
VAT Ouch, its not what everyone enjoys, taxation, but in the modern world ensuring your business is accounting correctly and paying what they are required into the trading economies has become a fact of life. International trading and ecommerce are at an all time high, and as such the world is adapting itself to suit this mass continental shift of finance, bitcoins and money movements.
In this arcticle i am hoping to shed a little light on how fulfillment companies are obliged to co operate with authorities and ensure their customers are aware of the laws and regulations regarding trading within our own realm of the UK and Europe.
First of all i would like to advise that i am not an accountant but have experience with dealing with imports and UK taxation departments so as such i am offering my views, please do your own research and consult with a registered tax advisor before trading and to firm up what is required of you to ensure legal trading.
First of all let me be blunt and answer a few questions:
I am outside the EU and therefore i do not need to pay VAT?
This statement is incorrect, every company outside the EU utilising the services of a fulfilment house within the EU MUST be registered for VAT in the country or countries they are trading in.
If you are shipping customers goods from outside the EU then you still have to register for VAT subject to thresholds which are as low as £30,000 in some countries.
Do i Pay VAT on your services?
We do not bill our customers ouside the EU, VAT on our services, EU customers with a valid VAT number are billed on a reverse charge VAT system.
Can I use a back street fulfillment company?
From 2018 all UK Fulfillment Houses will have to register for the Fulfillment House Registration Scheme with HMRC, the authority who collects taxes in the UK, any company not registering will be trading illegally and liable to penalties, ultimately their business shut down.
This new directive has been bought in to clamp down on traders from around the world bypassing EU VAT regulations.
All Fulfillment houses will have to do background checks on all of their clients before allowing them to trade from their premises, checks will include identity, address and VAT registration checks. Storeship Limited are currently updating their own systems to ensure compliance with the new regulations.
I am based in the UK but not VAT registered?
As a UK based company we must charge VAT to all of our clients within the EU, except those outside UK with a valid VAT number who are applicable for reverse charge VAT.
Do I need a UK based company to trade?
NO, you do not have to have a UK company to trade just be registered with the authorities for VAT.
Where can I get help registering for VAT?
By utilising our Fulfilment services we are more than happy to help you set up your UK VAT number and register correctly, as well as offering advise on what you can claim back and how you can account for the VAT.