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Regulations Hit Sellers Shipping to Europe

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Regulations Hit Sellers Shipping to Europe

Etsy warned sellers that those shipping to countries in the EU (European Union) face new requirements that presumably apply to sellers on any platform.

In an announcement on Tuesday, Etsy wrote:

“We wanted to let you know about a new consumer protection directive that has passed in the European Union and how it may impact your shop. This directive requires professional sellers who ship to the EU to identify themselves to buyers as “traders.” Under EU law, traders are required to provide the right to withdraw to their consumers (also known as “right of withdrawal”). Some exclusions apply, such as customized, made-to-order, and digital items.”

Etsy outlined the steps sellers who registered as a business must take to comply with EU laws, including adjusting their return policies to offer a minimum of 14-day returns.

In what may be even more concerning to sellers: “Add your contact information in the seller details section underneath your return policies. By doing so, we will automatically display “trader” status and the required contact information on your listings.”

Etsy noted, “This is an EU directive and Etsy will try and help you navigate your Etsy shop, but if you have any legal questions or concerns about whether this applies to you, please contact your legal advisor.”

Presumably other marketplaces, including eBay, and other platforms will likewise advise sellers.

Both eBay and Etsy have also advised sellers about another law that impacts sellers who ship to Germany: new packaging requirements. Etsy advised sellers of a new law going into effect in Germany: “This law states that if you ship to German buyers, you’ll need to register your tax ID and information with LUCID Packaging Register, the German government database. If you don’t register you may face fines up to €200,000 and a prohibition in sales, and your goods could possibly be confiscated during delivery.”

And eBay set up a page on its website about the new law, explaining, “As of July 1, 2022 eBay is legally obligated to confirm our sellers meet these requirements. If you do not comply with the Packaging Act, your eBay account may be restricted.”

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.

3 thoughts on “Regulations Hit Sellers Shipping to Europe”

  1. When did we concede that we are subject to the extra-territorial jurisdiction of the EU? You’d think somebody would have mentioned it.

    Of course, big corporations love regulations – they have buildings full of lawyers to deal with them. So do the Chinese – they just ignore them and nobody says a word. So naturally ebay is gung ho for them – they’re a great help in its primary mission, which is to operate a honey trap for US small businesses, masquerading as an ecommerce marketplace and burden them with so much carp that there’s.no chance of them causing probs for the corps or their Chinese masters.

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