OATA has joined forces with Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Trading Standards team to provide new support and advice guidance for its members.

Three new guides have been produced for OATA members covering electrical goods, product safety and fair trading to help businesses show they are complying with the law and have done due diligence about the products they sell.

If any OATA members are challenged by local authorities over any issues covered by the three guides then the new Primary Authority scheme can provide regulatory support, provided the businesses have followed the guidance.

Chief Executive Dominic Whitmee explained: “I’m delighted to be offering these three new Best Practice guides which are intended to help all OATA members by highlighting legal risks and the steps they need to take to avoid those risks.

“If they read the guides and follow the steps outlined in each they should ensure they are selling safe products and are trading fairly with their customers. The guides will prove particularly useful for any businesses which source products from aboard because all businesses need to show they have done ‘due diligence’ over any product or service they provide within their business.

“Ultimately, if they encounter problems they can demonstrate they have followed the advice in these guides. All Trading Standards departments have a graduated approach to enforcement and we would encourage our members to work closely with their local officers who can be a good source of helpful advice.”

The Product Safety and Electrical Goods guides will help retailers, wholesalers and importers who buy equipment from other companies (UK or abroad) and supply these to customers. The law expects businesses to use their professional judgment when choosing the products they sell to ensure they are safe and the OATA guide outlines the steps businesses need to follow to comply with the law.

The Fair Trading Guide will help all businesses and covers issues such as distance (online) selling, price displays and unfair trading practices.

To view the guides OATA members log into the Members’ Area.