In order to sell electrical and electronic equipment in Germany, companies must comply with the regulations and obligations set out in the Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act (ElektroG). The same applies to cells, batteries and accumulators that have to comply with the Battery Law (BattG).
These laws oblige manufacturers and distributors to register with the “Elektro Altgeräte Register” (EAR) foundation in order to obtain a WEEE registration number as soon as they start placing their products on the German market. Electrical appliances and batteries may only be sold in Germany after this number has been issued.
What products is it?
Electrical and electronic devices: On August 15, 2018, the principle of the Open Scope (“open scope”) entered into force. This means that all electrical and electronic equipment (AEE) must be declared to the EAR Foundation, unless there is a legal exception.
This standard affects not only typical electrical or electronic products, but also products with electrical functions such as furniture with lights, smart clothing, plugs, etc.
In accordance with European legislation, the previous 10 categories have been replaced by the following 6 new categories. To determine the category to which a product belongs, its size should also be taken into account.
- Temperature exchange apparatus
- Monitors, screens and devices with screens with a surface area greater than 100 cm²
- Large appliances (with an external dimension greater than 50 cm)
- Small appliances (with no outer dimension greater than 50 cm)
- Small computer and telecommunications devices (with no external dimension greater than 50 cm).
Batteries, batteries and accumulators: Classification according to three groups (1) for electrical devices 2) for vehicles or 3) industrial.
Who is required to register?
These laws oblige manufacturers and distributors to register with the foundation “Elektro Altgeräte Register” (EAR) in order to obtain a WEEE registration number and/or their registration number Batt-G-Reg.-Nr. as soon as they start marketing their products on the German market.
Electrical appliances and batteries may only be sold in Germany after this number has been issued. In the case of sales to distributors in Germany, it may be the exporter or the importer who assumes the obligation to collect and treat the WEEE or batteries.
Foreign manufacturers or distributors who do not have a branch in Germany and who wish to sell their products directly to end consumers in Germany (eg with online sales) are also subject to the obligation to register, collect and process their WEEE and batteries. In the case of WEEE, the appointment of a proxy-based in Germany is mandatory to do so, in the case of batteries it is optional.
What are your obligations?
- Correct labeling
- Registration in the “Elektro-Altgeräte-Register EAR”, both for EEE and batteries
- In the case of foreign exporters without a branch in Germany, assign a proxy-based in Germany to do so. In the case of EEE, the designation of the proxy is mandatory, in the case of batteries it is optional.
- Presentation of monthly and annual declarations to the EAR on the quantities (by weight) of the products placed on the German market
- Subscription of a financial guarantee
- Collection and management of containers with out-of-use devices, in case of receiving an order from the EAR. The collection frequency is governed by the number of devices placed on the German market.
Manufacturers and distributors must register with the “Elektro Altgeräte Register” (EAR)