There are a number of rules you may need to follow when trading
You may have other responsibilities depending on what your business does. Check if you need: licences or permits, for example to play music, sell food or to trade in the street. There are also rules you must follow if you: sell goods online, buy goods from abroad or sell goods abroad or store or use personal information
Check if you need licences or permits.
Food premises approval
If your business involves handling meat, fish, egg or dairy products, you must be inspected and may require approval by your local council.
The council will decide if you get approval or need to register.
Street trading licence (England and Wales)
Contact the council to find out if you need a licence to trade in the street in England and Wales.
You might not need a street trading licence if you have a pedlar’s certificate - contact the council to find out.
If you trade without a licence, you can be fined up to £1,000
Businesses, organisations and individuals who want to sell or supply alcohol in England and Wales must have a licence or other authorisation from a licensing authority - usually a local council. The law and policy governing this area is overseen by the Home Office.
The types of businesses and organisations that need alcohol licences might include:
- pubs and bars
- late-opening cafes
- village and community halls
Some specific licence requirement information can be found via the links below:-
Online and distance selling
You must provide certain information if you’re selling goods or services through digital TV, by mail order or by phone or text message. This is called distance selling.
If you don’t follow the rules you could be made to provide the goods or services as agreed, pay compensation or be given an unlimited fine or a prison sentence.
For more information please see links below:
As well as the rules for distance selling, there are extra rules for selling online.
Starting to import
Most businesses hire someone to deal with customs and to transport their goods from overseas.
What you need to do depends on whether you’re importing from:
Please see link below for more comprehensive information:
Data protection and your business
You must follow rules on data protection if your business stores or uses personal information.
This applies to information kept on staff, customers and account holders, for example when you:
- recruit staff
- manage staff records
- market your products or services
- use CCTV
This could include:
- keeping customers’ addresses on file
- recording staff working hours
- giving delivery information to a delivery company
Why do I need business insurance?
Business insurance can help protect business owners and independent professionals against everyday risks, such as mistakes, stock or premises damage, and legal costs (known as Liability insurance). Some policies can even protect against business interruption and supply chain breakdown.