The UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) Mark is the new UK product marking for goods being placed on the market in Great Britain (England, Wales, and Scotland). It covers most goods that previously required the CE marking.
The UKCA (UK Conformity Assessment) mark has now come into force to replace the CE Mark for manufacturers selling products in Great Britain (i.e. United Kingdom excluding Northern Ireland). The UKCA mark will work in the same way as the CE mark, which means products will need to be assessed to the UKCA requirements before they can be sold on the GB market. UKCA Mark Testing, Certification, and Guidance ensures your products meet the latest requirements and are ready for the UK market.
UKCA marking: are you ready?
There was a transition period until 1 January 2022 when CE marking will continue to be recognized in the UK. However, in response to the impact of the pandemic on businesses, the UK Government has extended the deadline to apply UKCA marks for certain products to demonstrate compliance with product safety regulations until 1 January 2023.
It is essential to understand in detail your obligations and have carried out all the necessary preparations for its introduction.
This requires you to have met all of the new UKCA requirements such as:
- Product marking labeling requirements
- Produced a UKCA declaration of conformity
- Product compliance with the current Designated Standards
These designated standards are listed by the UK Government and technical requirements.
If you are importing manufactured goods into Great Britain, then additional labeling requirements may apply for importers.
For holders of EU Notified Body certificates for CE marking, before the UKCA marking can be applied, there will need to be a certification from the UK Approved Body. Your EU Type Examination certificate will not be valid for UKCA marking.
The manufacturer or their authorized representative is responsible for affixing the UKCA marking to the product to declare that the product is in conformity with the relevant requirements.
The Element advantage
Our team of engaged experts provides equipment manufacturers with UKCA Mark Testing, Certification, and Guidance to allow for a smooth transition for your products to meet the new standards for both the UK and EU markets.
We have an in-depth understanding of the requirements to review the product's test reports, labeling, instructions for use, and declaration of conformity to guide you through the process. By using our expertise and knowledge, we ensure your obligations are met in conjunction with the UKCA mark requirements.
For further UKCA mark guidance on Element's new UKCA compliance review service, or to book your assessment, please contact us today.
What is the timeline for the UKCA mark?
From January 2021, businesses placing products onto the UK market, regardless of where in the world they are based, have the choice to either use the CE marking or begin applying the UKCA marking. As of January 1, 2023, the option to use the CE mark will cease, and the UKCA mark must be used (save for some limited exceptions). Although the rules are broadly similar between the CE and UKCA regimes, some differences must be observed.
Note that the UKCA mark should be indelibly marked on the product or rating plate. However, as a one-year temporary measure (until January 1, 2024) it may optionally be marked on accompanying documentation.
Which products need the UKCA marking?
Most products that are currently covered under CE marking will fall under the new UKCA requirements. There are exceptions and different rules for certain products, including medical devices, construction products, and vehicles. Element is an approved body, and we work in partnership with manufacturers to help to gain UKCA marking for a range of products, including:
- Electrical and electronic equipment
- Radio equipment
- Low voltage equipment
- Equipment used in potentially explosive atmospheres
- Marine equipment
What does it mean for my business?
All of this means that businesses should act now to ensure that they have everything in place for the January 1, 2023 deadline. Beyond this point, CE marking will no longer be recognized in the UK for these products. This may mean new paperwork, new labels, new packaging, and new relationships with importers, to name but a few.
Broadly speaking, each of the CE marking directives has been transposed into UK law under a corresponding UK Regulation. For example, the Electromagnetic Compatibility Directive 2014/30/EU has been transposed into the Electromagnetic Compatibility Regulations 2016 (as amended), and the Radio equipment Directive 2014/53/EU has been transposed into the Radio Equipment Regulations 2017 (as amended). Despite some changes in the text, the essential technical requirements remain largely the same, as do the options for conformity assessment procedures.
UKCA mark self-declaration
Because the conformity assessment procedures remain largely unchanged, this means the option for self-declaration still exists, but only for products that also qualify for self-declaration under the CE marking rules. Each directive and regulation has different criteria for this, so it is always best to check before placing any products on the market.
The UKCA declaration of conformity will look very similar to the UK declaration of conformity, but will refer to the UK legislation instead of the EU legislation. There may also be a requirement to list new standards.
For some products, the self-declaration alone will not be sufficient, and an approved body may be required to issue a UK-type examination certificate for the product. If in doubt, Element can advise on the appropriate conformity assessment procedure for any given product.
What are UKCA marking requirements?
Where the EU maintained lists of harmonized standards, so too does the UK maintain lists of designated standards, which can be used to support the UKCA declaration of conformity. Each UK Regulation has its own list of standards. Some of these lists will differ from the analogous EU list, and so different standards may be used on the EU and UK declarations of conformity. It is worth noting that the choice of standards may impact the conformity assessment procedures available to you.
As it stands, the standards lists are virtually identical and hence it is not likely that a product will require additional testing to satisfy CE and UKCA compliance. Even where standards differ, further testing is not often needed.
UKCA marking in Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland will remain subject to EU CE marking regulations. Any CE-marked product can be sold in Northern Ireland. In addition, the Northern Ireland Protocol allows products certified to EU directives in Great Britain by a UK Approved Body to be legally sold in Northern Ireland (but not the rest of the EU). This is shown on the product by use of the special UK(NI) marking adjacent to the CE mark.
Products for sale in both Great Britain and the EU that carry both CE marking and UKCA marking do not need the additional UK(NI) mark.
Delay in UKCA Implementation
On 24 August 2021, the UK Government announced that businesses will have an extra year to start using the UKCA marking
Using the UK Conformity Assessed (UKCA) Mark After Brexit
Are you ready to use the UKCA mark after Brexit? Are your EMC, Low Voltage, Radio Equipment, or ATEX products compliant with this? A conformity mark must be used when placing certain products on the UK market.
Simon Barrowcliff, General Manager - Certification & Approvals at Element, delivers guidance on the UKCA Mark , reviewing the procedures for products in the ITE, Wireless, IoT, and medical device industries.
CE Marking and Testing
CE marking is a mandatory conformity mark enabling you to enjoy free movement between all 28 Member states.