The Business Forum and the Council have received many letters from traders asking for guidance on duty of care certificates for waste disposal. One particular company, has begun charging retailers an administration fee for providing them with a certificate. They have also sent demands for payment to many retailers who may not in fact be liable to pay a fee for their certificate.
In some cases traders have contested the bill only to be served with a court summons. Allegedly one trader paid the fee in good faith but discovered later that they were not liable. They have allegedly been refused a refund even though the contract in question predated the introduction of the fee.
If you have been billed for a duty of care certificate please read your terms and conditions to find out whether or not you are in fact liable. If you signed up with your waste collection company before January 2004 chances are you are not liable for the fee but you may have been billed nevertheless.
The Business Forum has taken advice from Trading Standards who have provided a guidance sheet at http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/cgi-bin/brighton-hove/bus1item.cgi?file=BADV0006.txt. If you require a free duty of care certificate please click on the link below. And if you need help on how to complete and process it contact Trading Standards on the number given below.
One or two traders who were not liable for a fee from their waste contractor and contested it were spared the ordeal of going to court.
In the course of talking to traders about their waste disposal issues the Business Forum has found that there is some variation in the prices people are paying for bin hire, bin collection and bin cleaning. We would encourage traders to exchange information to make sure they are getting the best possible deal.
If you are in any doubt about your rights please contact the Trading Standards office on their business advice line: 01273 292523. The Business Forum is interested to hear from any businesses that have had adverse experiences in this area. Please contact Soozie Campbell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here to download Duty of Care Certificate
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