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Guest JulieAub

Can I sell a chair without fire safety label on ebay?

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Guest JulieAub

If I sell a dining chair on ebay which I have recovered , does it have to meet with any fire regs. Thank you

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Download the Domestic Flammability Guide and check it out, but I cannot be certain a private individual is exempt it appears all suppliers of domestic upholstered furniture and furnishings are responsible, with little defence, for product liability under the Consumer Protection Act 1987. Therefore suppliers of domestic upholstered furniture and furnishings need to meet the requirements of the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 and the GPSR as it is illegal to supply goods that do not comply.

I expect Ebay may not accept it as they could be breaking the law even if you are not.

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Further to the above posting I have an opinion from trading standards,

The Furniture and Furnishings Fire Safety Regulations apply to the sale of second hand furniture and furniture purchased at the first point of supply, i.e. retail sales.

A private individual can sell second hand furniture but it should be compliant with the above mentioned regulations. The difficulty in situations that arise where a person who IS NOT in trade or business commits a breach of consumer legislation is that Trading Standards have limited powers of enforcement where the sale is not in the course of trade or business.

Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 08454 04 05 06. Trading Standards http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/advice/index.cfm

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Guest Rroger_D

Hi,

I have been following intently, the questions and replies on this forum. All extremely interesting. Thank you.

My situation, if you are able to please advise, is:

I was about to purchase a leather sofa off Ebay, to put in a rental property of mine. Having viewed the sofa, it has a manufactured date of 1996. It has various wording on the label re cigarette and match resistant but does not have the latest, standard red triangle and green rectangle labels. Obviously, being manufactured in 1996, it does not comply with the 1998 or later standards.

Where do I stand? I am safe to purchase and use for tenants as long as it states some form of retardant measure?

Thank you for all you help, in advance.

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There are two types of label Display label and Permanent label.
Display labeling is required to indicate the ignition resistance of each item of furniture and needs to be attached to all new furniture at the point of sale, with the exception of mattresses, bed-bases, pillows, scatter cushions, seat pads, loose covers (sold separately from the furniture) and stretch covers.
Permanent labeling on furniture is intended to assist enforcement officers and show compliance with the specific ignition requirements for covers and fillings. The prime objective of the permanent label is for enforcement officers to examine a label on a piece of furniture and obtain relevant information which will enable them to find out and confirm that the materials used in the item do comply with the Regulations. They will also be able to complete a cross check of the claims being made on the label with the manufacturer’s records.

Standard red triangle and green rectangle labels are the display labels and tend to go missing soon after purchase it is the permanent labels that you need to have, which are fixed to the item of furniture, usually on the underside of the furniture, these give all the relevant information.

Check the Domestic Flammability Guide and http://www.firesafe.org.uk/furniture-and-furnishings-fire-safety-regulations-19881989-and-1993/


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Guest TraceyTas

Hi Tom

we have a very interesting situation where a Tenant has removed the fire safety labels from soft furnishings. This effectively renders the items of furniture obsolete and they are refusing to pay for replacement claiming that we can obtain proof of purchase of the items to validate the safety for future tenancies. Can you confirm this is the case and I am grateful for your intervention.

Many thanks, Tracey

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Hi Tracy

What label have they removed is it the display label or the permanent label. The display label is only required when the item is in the store on display and the permanent label is fixed permanently to the upholstered furniture. The permanent label is located out of sight and is the proof that the item of furniture meets the requirements of the regulations.

Check out the Domestic Flammability Guide for more information and images of the two labels.

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Guest penny

Hi, another question for Tom: I want to re-upholster the seats of some dining chairs for use in a tenanted property. They obviously need to conform to the required standards. Is it possible buy fabrics ready proofed + labels?

Thanks,

penny

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Re-upholsterers are covered by the regulations if you purchase your materials from one of them it reasonable certain they will comply and may provide you with labels. If you go to a supplier, for the materials that meet the regulations, then you should get all the necessary documentation and labels.

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Guest Helen Coster

Hi Tom

You seem to be a mine of information! I have some 1980s chairs which I am sure have absolutely no fire retardant qualities. I don't plan to sell these but give them away. In that case do the regulations apply? Thanks in advance

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I am not the expert, that is FIRA I simply read the guide and legislation and try to interpret it, but thanks anyway. The guidance says,

10.1 Charities

The Regulations state that selling upholstered furniture and furnishings to raise funds for charitable purposes constitutes a business activity and hence there is a need to conform to the requirements of the Regulations. Therefore the charity will need to ensure that either the item has complied with the appropriate test(s) as outlined in the Regulations or is fitted with a permanent label which outlines the compliance of the particular item. Items which have not complied with the appropriate test(s) or do not carry a permanent label which outlines the compliance of the item cannot be sold. However furniture manufactured prior to 1950 is outside the scope of these Regulations. The Regulations state that the simple distribution of second-hand upholstered furniture and furnishings by a charity in pursuance of its charitable objectives to needy persons, either free of charge or at a nominal amount only, is not considered to constitute a supply in the course of business and hence is exempt from compliance to the Regulations. This practice is considered to be unsafe, especially in the case of vulnerable and needy persons, and it is to be discouraged. Charities distributing second-hand furniture are also advised to seek assurance that these items conform to the Regulations in the same way that second hand furniture is sold.

What you are suggesting is similar and as it states you are not subject to the regulations but it is to be discouraged.

http://www.fira.co.uk/publications/flammability-guides

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Guest belgut1

Hello

Iam selling and renting out spandex chair covers . i can not find fire retardant regulation on the fira website .any idea as to what might apply to those ?

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Loose covers for upholstered furniture must comply with Schedule 5, Part 1 of the Regulations and stretch covers must comply with Schedule 5, Part 2 of the Regulations as these are sold separately from the furniture. They also need to have a permanent label attached to them and this label may appear on the underside of the fabric. There are no display label requirements for loose and stretch covers. A copy of the guide to the regulation can be found above and at http://www.fira.co.u...mability-guides a copies of the regulation can be found on http://www.firesafe.org.uk/furniture-and-furnishings-fire-safety-regulations-19881989-and-1993/

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Guest Simon Newbold

Hi Tom,

You seem to be knowledgeable with regard to the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) Regulations and I have a question for you.

I recently received a computer chair which obviously has come from China (By its packaging) supplied by a uk seller. After having assembled it I realised that their wasn’t a Fire retardant label permanently attached. I reported the issue to the seller who reassured me that "All of our items comply with UK fire and safety regulations, a tag or label may easily become detached during the manufacturing process but as stated we can send out a label if you so desire.

I have asked the CAB for advice with regard to the supplier forwarding me a fire retardant label, who in turn gave me the BSI telephone number. Unfortunately the BSI have given me a very small amount of advice as they only test products and are not specialist in the furniture regulations.

My question to you Tom is: Can a supplier send a Fire retardant label post delivery to attach to the product - seems to me that this action would contravene the regulation?

Kind regards

Simon

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I think I would agree with you Simon before the retailer dispatched the chair to you it should have carried a display and permanent label, if label may easily become detached during the manufacturing process then it is not very permanent. The enforcing authority for the flammability regulations is the trading standards and the best guidance is The Furniture Industry Research Association(FIRA) http://www.fira.co.uk contact them, they should be able to give you authoritative guidance.

http://www.firesafe.org.uk/furniture-and-furnishings-fire-safety-regulations-19881989-and-1993/ Guide to the Regulations

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Guest Simon Newbold

Hi Tom,

Thanks for taking the time to respond, you are the first person to suggest contacting FIRA, I’ll get on to them straight away.

Kind regards

Simon :)

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Guest James Jones

HI Tom,

I'm researching into the fire regulations and have a question. I've tried trading standards, and they are at a lose. In regards to retro furniture (manufactured in 1970'3 / 80's), under what circumstances is it possible to sell this furniture in it's original state (not upholstered with fire retardant materials). If a private seller, or antique dealer sells to another furniture trader (i.e Not the end domestic user) do the regulations apply?

Many thanks for this, it's very hard to get definitive answers on this!

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James this is a difficult one and it’s a matter of interpreting The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 the appropriate paragraph is 14 Second-hand furniture. My interpretation would be anything between 1950 and 1993 is subject to the regulations but not the full regulations. Upholstered furniture did not needed to comply with any legislation or fire tests for three decades and then has to pass the cigarette test, it doesn't make sense. Also I would think if you are selling to a business dealing in furniture and not a domestic user you are exempt from the regulations.

I would suggest you contact http://www.fira.co.uk/ who are the real experts and they should be able to help. Check out http://www.firesafe.org.uk/furniture-and-furnishings-fire-safety-regulations-19881989-and-1993/ and http://www.fira.co.uk/publications/flammability-guides and http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/advice/advice-business-sfsum20.cfm

If you do get any answers get back to us,please.

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Guest Guest

Hi Tom,

I have recently started an upholstery course and I wish to sell some of the items I have reupholstered.

It's mainly wingback chairs and a couple of drop bottom chairs.

Are there any regulations, that you know of, I have to abide by?

The wingback chairs I bought originally had labels attached but now I have reupholstered the items, they have been removed.

Is there any way it can sell the items without fire safety labels? If I need them, how can I come by some?

Regarding the drop bottom chairs, do they need labels? None of the chairs I bought had any labels attached and they were from a vintage second hand shop.

Thank you for your help in advance,

Hayley.

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As you intend running a business and selling your finished upholstered furniture then you are subject to the regulations. The Regulations apply to re-upholstery furniture which was made after 1 January 1950. All filling material and cover fabric used in re-upholstering such furniture must meet the new levels of fire resistance. This means that any upholstery materials which the upholsterer adds to the furniture in the course of refurbishing it must pass the appropriate test(s).

You need to study the 1988 regulation, the other are amendments to this principle regulation and the FIRA guide should help. CPS Labels should be able to provide the appropriate labels.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/all?title=furniture

http://www.fira.co.uk/document/fira-flammability-guide-october-2011pdf.pdf

http://www.cpslabels.co.uk

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Guest Noreen

 

Hello Tom

Could you please give me your opinion of where I stand legally with the following items.

I have some large floor cushions which I purchased in India in the 1970’s.  I am quite sure they do not meet any current fire regulations.  The covers are Indian cotton and the insides are what appear to be some sort of solid foam pads.

I would now like to sell them on Gumtree or possibly give them away through that site.  Where do I stand legally with both options?

Many thanks in advance for your help.

Noreen

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You must understand I cannot be held responsible for any action resulting from the contents of this advice as the ultimate interpretation of the Regulations rests with the Courts. 

The guide states “Persons who supply second-hand furniture in the course of business or trade (e.g. auctioneers, charities)” are subject to the regulations. In my opinion you are not in course of business or trade therefore not subject to the regulations. However I believe you have a moral duty to inform any purchaser that the item you are advertising does not meet the requirements of the regulations.

Check out Fire safety of furniture and furnishings in the home - A Guide to the UK Regulations

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Guest

 

I had already checked out Fire safety of furniture and furnishings in the home - A Guide to the UK Regulations and was no further forward.  As far as I could see the guide does not cover the sale of second hand items by individuals, nor even where one would stand if one gave the items away.

 

I would obviously give full details of the origin of my cushions to whoever bought/was given them.  This would include the fact that they were hardly likely to meet any current fire regulations.

 

I am still no further forward but thank you for responding, Tom.

 

 

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If you fancy your chance as a lawyer you could check out the legislation "The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988," paragraph 14 second-hand furniture and I read it as the regulations do not apply if regulation 4 excludes it and/or the person who sells it does so not for purposes of a business, dealing in furniture.  This means to me that if a private person sells it and it is not on behalf of a business then the regulations do not apply. If you have a lawyer friend maybe he/she could interpreted it for you. 

Check out   http://www.firesafe.org.uk/furniture-and-furnishings-fire-safety-regulations-19881989-and-1993/ for more information.

also check and contact http://www.fira.co.uk they may help.

 

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Guest

Hi Tom

Can you give any advise on what regulations apply for arm covers for a sofa - the fabric for the sofa is FR treated and meets cigarette and match tests; would arm covers need to be the same??  Cant find any advise anywhere.

Many thanks.

 

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