UKCA Mark (UK from 1st Jan 2021)

On 1st September, the UK issued instructions for manufactured goods (and some other classes of goods), together with instructions on the UKCA mark applicable from 1st Jan 2021.

The UKCA mark instructions are here.

The instructions for manufactured goods are here.

The instructions for medical devices are here (note CE marked goods can circulate in GB until 30 June 2023).

The instructions for construction products are here.

The instructions for explosives are here. (HSE)

The instructions for rail interoperability are here. (dating from 1st July 2020)

UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) marking is a new UK product marking that will be used for goods being placed on the market in Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland). It covers most goods which previously required the CE marking, and aerosol products. I Blog posted some time ago about UKCA marking coming in.

UKCA marking alone cannot be used for goods placed on the Northern Ireland market, which will continue to require CE marking or UK(NI) marking.

The technical requirements (‘essential requirements’) and the conformity assessment processes and standards that can be used to demonstrate conformity – will be largely the same from 1st Jan 2021 as they are now.

UKCA marking can be used from 1 January 2021. However, CE marking will be permitted until 1 January 2022 in most cases.

CE marking will only be valid in Great Britain for areas where GB and EU rules remain the same. If the EU changes its rules and the product carries the CE mark on the basis of those new rules, CE marking will not be permitted for sales in Great Britain even before 31 December 2021. Please look out for Blog posts.

UKCA marking will not be recognised on the EU market. Products currently requiring a CE marking will need a CE marking for sale in the EU from 1 January 2021. [note from 1 Jan 2021, CE marks must be issued by legal entities based in the EU]

UKCA marking does not apply to existing stock, for example if the good was fully manufactured and ready to place on the market before 1 Jan 2021. In these cases the good can be sold in Great Britain with a CE marking even if covered by a certificate of conformity issued by a UK body.

On 1 Jan 2021 UK standards will be the same in substance and with the same reference as the standards used in the EU. However, they will use the prefix ‘BS’ to indicate that they are standards adopted by the British Standards Institution as the UK’s national standards body.

From 1 Jan 2022, CE marks will not be recognised in Great Britain for areas covered by the UKCA mark instructions and the UKCA marking. However, a product bearing the CE marking would still be valid for sale in the UK so long as it was also UKCA marked and complied with the relevant UK rules. Separate rules apply to medical devices (see the link above).

Product areas covered by the UKCA marking

• Toy safety

• Recreational craft and personal watercraft

• Simple pressure vessels

• Electromagnetic compatibility

• Non-automatic weighing instruments

• Measuring instruments

• Lifts

• ATEX

• Radio equipment

• Pressure equipment

• Personal protective equipment

• Gas appliances

• Machinery

• Outdoor noise

• Ecodesign

• Aerosols

• Low voltage electrical equipment

• Restriction of hazardous substances

All enquiries should be to BEIS.

This is a summary, please follow the links and read the instructions in full.

Building Safety (England)

On 2nd April, the government gave an update on its progress to overhaul England’s building and fire safety regimes, following the catastrophic Grenfell Tower fire in London.

The government’s update on building safety is here. Some key points –

(1) the new Building Safety Regulator (that is being established in shadow form by the Health and Safety Executive – I Blog posted about this at the time of announcement in January 2020) will be responsible for implementing and enforcing a more stringent regulatory regime for higher risk buildings, as well as providing wider and stronger oversight of safety and performance across all buildings, and increasing the competence of those working on building safety

(2) the new regulator will be responsible for all major regulatory decisions made at key points during the design, construction, occupation and refurbishment stages of buildings in scope

(3) the government will establish a national construction products regulatory role to strengthen the oversight of the existing regulatory regime governing construction products

(note – construction products in the UK are presently regulated by retained EU Law – see the Brexit Consolidated Law List in Subscribers’ tailored Cardinal Environment EHS Legislation Registers & Law Checklists systems)

(4) the government has confirmed ACM PE (a cladding material used at Grenfell Tower) presents an unparalleled risk and should be remediated on all buildings – the update also state consolidated advice is clear that other cladding materials should also be assessed for safety and remediated where found to be unsafe –

External wall systems on high-rise buildings using Class C or D HPL panels are unsafe and should be removed as they do not comply with building regulations.

(5) in May 2020, the government will publish an update to Approved Document B that will include increased fire safety measures in high-rise residential buildings, including the provision of sprinkler systems and consistent signage in all new high-rise blocks of flats over 11 metres tall

(Subscribers to Cardinal Environment tailored EHS Legislation Registers & Law Checklists who have Approved Document B loaded, will have this updated)

(6) the government will work with the National Fire Chiefs Council on a series of tests of new evacuation alert systems technology, with a view to including guidance in a later update to Approved Document B

(7) the government has announced measures to support construction professionals who have experienced challenges in accessing adequate Professional Indemnity Insurance and support for fire engineers who are advising on the safety of high-rise and other complex buildings

Announcements already made include –

(a) naming building owners who have been slow to act in removing unsafe ACM cladding

(b) introducing the Fire Safety Bill as part of delivery of the recommendations of the Grenfell Inquiry’s Phase One report – the Bill is not yet progressed

(c) legislating for the new reforms through the Building Safety Bill – this Bill is also not progressed

A blog post made at the time covers their First Reading at UK Parliament.

EU Law in UK 2021 (UK Brexit)

Exit day is 31st January (end of this month)

Implementation period completion day is 31st December (this is the end of the transition period)

The Chancellor speaking to the Financial Times, confirms there will be no dynamic alignment with EU Law after 2020.

I am not yet clear which laws will diverge, but please note the Brexit laws allow divergence, for example the Brexit Agriculture Bill provides for England, Wales and Northern Ireland to create their own marketing standards (Scotland will need to enact its own Brexit Agriculture Bill).

The EU Exit regulations (statutory instruments) we (Cardinal Environment) are consolidating into domestic law only deal with the pre-Brexit period to end Dec 2020.

It is the FT front page today (Saturday 18th January) and the lead on BBC online.

EU Law per se will not apply anyway. Note, there may be some long tail implementation left over from pre-Brexit that will be implemented.

We (Cardinal Environment) are already consolidating the EU Exit regulations into domestic law, and creating the Retained EU Law (EU Regulations, not Directives, that are adopted). Progress in this project can be seen by clicking the Brexit Consolidated Law List on the top right hand side of EHS Legislation Registers & Checklists homepages (both ENV and OHS).

We are working to the deadline of 31st December 2020 for completion of this project.

In addition, EHS Legislation Registers & Checklists will see the home page choice of ENV or OHS have additional Post-Brexit choices, and the existing links relabelled Pre-Brexit.

The Post-Brexit links will direct to shadow Registers & Checklists that will run from the end of Q1 to hit the end Dec 2020 deadline, for switch over to Post-Brexit.

Post-Brexit shadow Registers & Checklists running in 2020 will have Brexit Consolidated Law loaded (accessibility will stay from the main Brexit Consolidated Law list), and will display a changed Register layout.

Post-Brexit EHS Legislation Registers layout – EU Law will be moved from the top to below Guidance. We will still supply up to date EU Law to UK customers, but this is where it will be found. Retained EU Law will be displayed at the top of the Register.

Class Action in Consumer Protection (EU Law)

The Council of the EU today reached agreement on a draft directive on representative actions for the protection of the collective interests of consumers.

The draft directive is here.

The directive empowers qualified entities, such as consumer organisations, to seek, in addition to injunctions, also redress measures, including compensation or replacement, on behalf of a group of consumers that has been harmed by a trader in violation of one of the EU legal acts set out in an annex to the directive. These legal acts reflect recent developments in the field of consumer protection and extend to areas such as financial services, travel and tourism, energy, telecommunications and data protection, in addition to general consumer law.

Member states shall, for the purpose of representative actions for redress, be free to choose between an opt-in and an opt-out system. In an opt-in system, consumers will be required to express their wish to be represented by the qualified entity for the purpose of a particular representative action. In an opt-out system, consumers who do not wish to be represented by the qualified entity for the purpose of a particular representative action will be required to make a statement to that effect.

Member states will have 30 months from the entry into force of the directive to transpose it into national law, as well as an additional 12 months to start applying these provisions.

The directive will apply to representative actions brought after the date of application.

On the basis of the agreed text, the Council will start negotiations with the European Parliament with a view to exploring the possibility of an agreement for the swift adoption of the directive at second reading (“early second reading agreement”).

UKCA Mark (UK Brexit)

Exit day is 31st October (this is the date in a Statutory Instrument)

Please remember the UK is bringing in a new UKCA Mark, applicable after Exit day.

The Feb issued instructions on UKCA Mark are here.

This applies to certified goods sold in the UK.

Please follow the links carefully, as some goods will require the UKCA Mark immediately after Exit day.

Other goods will be able to continue with the CE Mark for a limited period.

Construction Products Regulation (UK Brexit)

Exit day is 31st October.

HMG has today published its updated instructions for Construction Products Regulation.

Here.

Note : (this is not a full list)

(1) All existing European harmonised standards will become UK ‘designated standards’. This will mean that immediately following the UK’s exit from the EU, the European harmonised standards and UK designated standards will be identical. The government will publish and maintain the list of UK designated standards. This will be a UK-wide approach with the standards applying at UK level.

(2) Goods legitimately affixed with CE marking already on the UK market before the UK leaves the EU will be able to continue to circulate in the UK.

Additionally, goods which are made and assessed against EU harmonised standards and legitimately carry the CE marking can continue to be placed on the UK market. It is intended that these arrangements will be for a time-limited period, but the Brexit Law itself does not limit the duration of this provision. Products being placed on the UK market in this way must be compliant with the obligations of the EU’s Construction Products Regulation.

(3) Manufacturers will not need to use the new UK mark if they have complied with the EU requirements and affixed CE marking, having had any required third-party conformity assessment activity undertaken by an EU recognised notified body. As set out above, it is intended that these arrangements will be for a time time-limited period.

Please read the full instructions.

The Construction Brexit Law instrument referred to above is included in the Brexit Law, Cardinal is currently consolidating into base text, and supplying to subscribers to Cardinal Environment EHS Legislation Registers & Checklists.