Legal Article - Business Law

What Should I do if the Trading Standards Officer Calls?

It is important that all staff are aware and are instructed to deal with Trading Standards/Enforcement Officers in a uniform way. The following approach is to be recommended:

i. Invite the Officer to a suitable private office being polite and courteous.

ii. Contact the nominated Manager/Director and let the officer know what is happening. An offer of tea/coffee is appropriate but do not enter into discussion about the business.

iii. The Manager/Director should introduce themselves and request to see the identity of the officer and ask the purpose of the visit.

iv. If the officer indicates the visit is in connection with an alleged offence then details should be taken of the problem.

A Director or Proprietor would be in a position to speak on behalf of the business, but if the officer is seeking to have an interview it would be acceptable to note the officers visit purpose, but indicate a request to seek professional advice before continuing further.

v. The assistance of Lawgistics is advised at that point.

vi. If the officer examines or seizes documents make a note of the relevant documents and why they are examined/seized. Request the opportunity to copy any documents seized.

vii. If you receive a letter from a Trading Standards Department suggesting an offence may have been committed Contact Lawgistics straight away to discuss further action.

Remember ONLY staff authorised to do so can speak on behalf of the Company or Partnership.

Published: 21 Mar 2011

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