This guidance is about placing manufactured goods on the market in Great Britain (GB). Great Britain is England, Wales and Scotland.
There’s different guidance if you’re:
If you have already placed your good on the UK market (or in an EU country) before 1 January 2021, you do not need to do anything.
Businesses are encouraged to be ready for full implementation of the new UK regime as soon as possible after 1 January 2021. However, to allow businesses time to adjust, CE marked goods in scope of this guidance that meet EU requirements (where these match UK requirements) can continue to be placed on the GB market until 1 January 2022 where EU and UK requirements remain the same. This includes goods which have been assessed by an EU recognised notified body. There are some exceptions to this guidance, highlighted below.
Check which rules apply
What you will need to do from 1 January 2021 depends on the type of goods you’re placing on the market.
Most of this page covers goods often known as new approach goods.
There are different rules for:
- goods regulated under the old approach
- goods covered by national rules (non-harmonised)
- certain other goods, such as medical devices and civil explosives
Speak to your solicitor or trade association if you are unsure which regulatory framework applies to your goods.
Old approach goods
You must follow different rules if you’re placing the following goods on the UK market:
Goods covered by national rules (non-harmonised)
You must make sure that your goods meet UK rules. You’ll need to do this even if they were previously sold in an EU country.
Check the UK product safety rules to find out what you need to do.
There are also special rules if you’re placing the following goods on the UK market:
- medical devices
- rail interoperability
- construction products]
- civil explosives
Check if you need to change your conformity assessment or marking
You need to use a conformity mark if you’re placing certain goods on the UK market. Before 1 January 2021 you can do this using the CE mark or other appropriate mark (such as the wheel marking or Pi mark).
From 1 January 2021, the UKCA mark will be the conformity assessment marking for Great Britain for most goods currently subject to CE marking.
The CE marking will be accepted in the UK until 1 January 2022 for certain products. You must be ready to use the UKCA marking from 1 January 2022 at the latest, although you should look to use the UKCA marking as soon as possible.
Using the UKCA marking
You need to use this marking if all of the following apply:
- you’re placing certain goods on the market from 1 January 2022 (although you can use it before this date)
- you need to have your good assessed by a third-party conformity assessment body and you’re using a UK notified body now or you plan to after 1 January 2021
- you haven’t transferred your conformity assessment files from your UK notified body to an EU recognised body before 1 January 2021
Contact your solicitor or trade association for advice on whether your good will be affected.
Using the CE marking
CE marking for the GB market
You will be able to use the CE marking until 31 December 2021 if any of the following apply:
- you currently apply the CE marking to your good on the basis of self-declaration
- any mandatory third-party conformity assessment was carried out by an EU-recognised notified body (including a body in a country with which the EU has a relevant mutual recognition agreement)
- the certificate of conformity previously held by a UK approved body has been transferred to an EU-recognised notified body
You can only place CE marked goods that meet EU requirements in Great Britain while UK and EU requirements are the same. This will be the case on 1 January 2021 and there are no UK plans to diverge at this time. Nonetheless you are encouraged to be ready as soon as possible, and by 1 January 2022 at the latest. If the EU changes their rules and you CE mark your goods based on new EU rules which are different from the requirements in the UK, you will no longer be able to use the CE marking in the UK. This will be the case even if the change happens before 1 January 2022.
CE marking for both the GB and EU market
The UKCA marking will not be recognised on the EU or Northern Ireland markets. Products currently requiring a CE marking for sale in the EU will continue to need a CE mark.
You will not need to take any action from 1 January 2021 if either of the following apply:
- you self-declare the conformity of your good against the regulations
- you voluntarily use a testing or notified body to test against European or international standards
You may need to take additional action if your good needs third-party conformity assessment.
Check whether your UK notified body is taking steps that help you continue to export to the EU without needing to find a new EU notified body.
If not, you may need apply for a new certificate from an EU notified body. Your existing notified body should provide another body of your choice information relating to your conformity assessments in order to facilitate this.
Speak to your testing body or solicitor for advice on how conformity processes for your good will be affected.
Using both the CE and UKCA marking
Goods can carry both the CE and UKCA markings so long as such they are fully compliant with both UK and EU regulations.
From 1 January 2021 the essential requirements and standards that can be used to demonstrate conformity with them for UKCA marked goods will be the same as they are now. That means that if your goods is currently made to the technical requirements necessary for CE marking then it will be made to the same technical requirements that will exist for UKCA marking from 1 January 2021. However, the conformity assessment bodies that test them may need to be different.
Appoint an authorised or responsible person in the UK
Authorised representatives and responsible persons based in the EU will no longer be recognised in Great Britain from 1 January 2021.
If you need to (or choose to) use an authorised authorised representative or responsible person, they will need to be based in the UK for products being placed on the GB market.
Check whether your legal responsibilities are changing
Your legal obligations will remain largely unchanged from 1 January 2021.
UK distributors and suppliers
You’ll need to confirm whether you or your supplier will become an ‘importer’ after 1 January 2021.
You’ll become an importer if you’re the one bringing goods into the UK from outside the UK and placing them on the market in Great Britain.
You’ll need to make sure:
- goods are labelled with your company’s details, including your company’s name and a contact address (until 31 December 2022 you can provide these details on the accompanying documentation rather than on the good itself)
- the correct conformity assessment procedures have been carried out and that goods have the correct conformity markings
- the manufacturer has drawn up the correct technical documentation and complied with their labelling requirements
- you maintain a copy of the declaration of conformity for a period of 10 years
- goods conform with the relevant essential requirements
Existing stock that has been fully manufactured and conformity marked can still be placed on the GB market after 1 January 2021 with existing markings and notified body numbers. This is true even if this would otherwise not be the case.
For example, a product covered by a UK certificate of conformity, and which would normally need UKCA marking after 1 January 2021, can still be sold in the UK with a CE marking so long as it is from pre-existing stock fully manufactured before 31 December 2020.
Relevant UK and EU legislation
The table below lists the current EU legislation for specific goods, and the title of the corresponding UK legislation.
Email email@example.com if you have goods regulation questions.