Those who want to sell on electronic marketplaces must deposit a WEEE number

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As of 1 July, dealers and manufacturers who want to offer their electrical and electronic products on electronic marketplaces must deposit the corresponding registration number for their goods with the respective marketplace. At the same time, online marketplaces such as Amazon or eBay in Germany are obliged to check whether the electrical and electronic products they offer come from manufacturer who are properly registered in accordance with the ElektroG.


WEEE number as a control criterion

Manufacturers of electrical and electronic products (i.e. equipment that uses, generates or measures electrical energy for its operation) according to the ElektroG are obliged in Germany to register these products with the stiftung elektro-altgeräte register (stiftung ear). Without this registration, the products may not be placed on the market by law.

This is an element of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), which ensures through waste legislation that dealers and manufacturers take responsibility for the environmentally sound disposal of their products placed on the market.

After a product has been registered with the stiftung ear, manufacturers are provided with the so-called WEEE number. WEEE stands for Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment and refers to the so-called WEEE Directive 2012/19/EU of the EU.

With the obligation to provide proof introduced on 1 July, traders and manufacturers must now deposit this WEEE number with the operators of the online marketplaces on which they want to offer their products. If this obligation is not fulfilled, the operators of the online marketplaces must exclude the products from sale.

IMPORTANT: each manufacturer is assigned a number, i.e. not a separate number for each product. So if a manufacturer is registered for e.g. large appliances with one brand and has received its number, it is still not allowed to place other types of appliances or appliances of other brands on the market.


The role of dealers and distributors

Distributors who are not at the same time manufacturers of the products do not have to register their own WEEE number. In this case it is sufficient for the dealer or distributor to refer to the proper registration of an economic operator before him in the supply chain with stiftung ear.

For this, the distributors can then – depending on the marketplace – deposit the WEEE number(s) of the respective duly registered economic operator of the equipment in question. These WEEE numbers of the duly registered economic operators can be researched in stiftung ear’s directory or these numbers can be requested from the upstream seller.


Proper registration with the Foundation

Registration with stiftung ear is done online via the ear portal. Here, in addition to company data, the brand and type of the electrical or electronic product to be registered must be indicated.

If all registration requirements are met, a registration notice is issued and the applicant manufacturer is published in the directory. The registration number (WEEE Reg. No. DE) is issued with the registration notice and is also published in the register of registered producers.


Click here to go to the ear portal.

Click here for the stiftung ear

Click here for the law on the marketing, return and environmentally sound disposal of electrical and electronic equipment.


You want to monitor your EPR obligations?

Learn more about our international EPR compliance services here.


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