Etsy Shop has recently sent a message to its sellers and it goes like this:
What are the requirements if I sell to buyers in Germany? Register with LUCID!
As an online retailer, sellers are required to register with the LUCID Packaging Register. You must register before sending any products to the German market. Even if you receive a single order from a buyer in Germany, you are required to register with LUCID and report it. It’s important to register as soon as possible, before July 1, 2022.
Registration is free, and every entity considered a “manufacturer” of packaging (including domestic and international Etsy shops) must register individually. Visit LUCID for additional information and to register.
What happens if I don’t register with LUCID?
Online retailers failing to comply may be subject to written warning letters or heavy fines (up to €200,000 and a prohibition in sales). Registration is free, and every entity considered a “manufacturer” of packaging (including domestic and international Etsy shops) must register individually.
That was the message from Etsy!And so far I believed that this was something only for Germany!
I took a closer look at it and found that I did not understand how it is supposed to work. I went to their website and found it to be too complicated. So I wrote a mail to Etsy asking about it and they answered that anyone who places packaged goods for sale on the German market is obliged to personally register with the new public Packaging Register known as "LUCID". I got a PDF with the precise German law (written in German, of course!)
They also included this link: https://www.verpackungsregister.org.Here I found a film that explains how the rules are for those sellers who are abroad (not in Germany). Erklärfilm zur Möglichkeit der Bevollmächtigung für ausländische Verpflichtete
I wrote down what was being said in the first half of the film and translated it into English.
Are you a foreign online retailer or importer and do not have a branch in Germany? In this film we explain how you can hire someone to fulfill your obligations under the German Packaging Act. You will learn exactly what you need to do to put the new authorization option into practice.
Sie sind ausländischer Onlinehändler oder Importeur und haben keine Niederlassung in Deutschland? In diesem Film erklären wir Ihnen, wie Sie jemanden mit der Erfüllung ihrer Pflichten nach dem deutschen Verpackungsgesetz beauftragen können. Sie erfahren, was Sie im Einzelnen tun müssen, um die neue Möglichkeit zur Bevollmächtigung in die Tat umzusetzen.
The film explains how a foreign online dealer can hire someone in Germany to fulfill the obligations under the German Packaging Act. It says that it teaches you exactly what you need to do to put the new authorization option into practice.
It is forbidden to sell packaged goods in Germany if the packaging obligations are not met. You must have paid for the recycling.
Es ist verboten verpackte Waren in Deutschland zu verkaufen wenn die Pflichten zu den Verpackungen nicht erfüllt sind. Sie müssen für das Recycling bezahlt haben.
You must report how much packaging material you are placing on the market to the system and to the Lucid packaging register. Without the commissioning of an authorized representative, you must meet all obligations under the Packaging Act yourself.
Sie müssen melden wieviel Verpackungsmaterial Sie in Verkehr bringen an das System und an das Verpackungsregister Lucid. Ohne die Beauftragung eines Bevollmächtigten müssen Sie allen Verpflichten nach den Verpackungsgesetz selbst nachkommen.
If you can not do this yourself you must have an authorized representative in Germany who is doing it for you, Any service provider that has a registered office or a branch in Germany can be your representative. You may only have one.
Sie dürfen nur einen Bevollmächtigten beauftragen. Bevollmächtigter kann jeder Dienstleister sein, der einen Sitz oder eine Niederlassung in Deutschland hat.
You have to sign a contract with your representative to regulate everything. This contract has to be written in the German language. If it exists also in another language it will be the German one that is valid.
Sie müssen mit Ihrem Bevollmächtigten einen schriftlichen Vertrag in deutscher Sprache abschliessen. Sofern der Vertrag in weiteren Sprachen vorliegt gilt die deutsche Fassung.
The contract has to be signed by both partners, either written by hand or signed with a qualified electronic signature.
Der Vertrag ist von beiden Geschäfts ...?... handschriftlich oder mit kvalifizierter elektronischer Signatur zu verzeichnen.
If you have put out something for sale on Etsy Shop it can be bought by anyone in the world so there is a possibility that you suddenly get an order from Germany! What to do then?
I don't know. You are obliged to ship your item within few days so now there is no time to figure out what to do. There is no time to write a contract with an authorized partner in Germany. Not even time to find one. Not even time to understand anything.
But you cannot send it to Germany without risking a fine!!!
As Etsy writes:
Online retailers failing to comply may be subject to written warning letters or heavy fines (up to €200,000 and a prohibition in sales).
There are 4.36 million active sellers on Etsy and any of them can receive an order from Germany!
Are four million people supposed to sign contracts with their own authorized representatives in Germany? In German language? Just in case ... if there will pop up an order from Germany?
If you make your living from Etsy (and also sell regularly to Germany) it can be a good idea to get an authorized representative in Germany, but some have very few things to sell, and then it is not "worth it" to go through the trouble of getting a professional, authorized representative in Germany.
Let's say that there is a young girl in South America who is making small amounts of bracelets that she sells on Etsy. And now she is supposed to find a professional, authorized representative in Germany? If she doesn't do that she will get a heavy fine and a prohibition in sales???
Who dares to sell anything to Germany?
There is also a packaging law in France.
Due to the EU packaging directive, anyone who sells packaged products to French end customers must license their packaging in France. In this article, we have summarized what needs to be considered in particular when it comes to packaging law in France.
This is too complicated and I am not the only one who thinks so.
In the long term, however, the solution should be to set up an EU-wide recycling system that does not disadvantage small online shops with EU-wide shipping.
Translated from Sind die Gebühren für Verpackungslizenzen zu teuer?
After much searching, I learned from someone on Etsy how one can do this. In this way, it is possible to avoid getting into trouble with these packaging regulations, which promise a high fine for those who neglect the rules.
PDF with all regulations in all the counties.
Here is a map where you can click on a country!
They are selling different kinds of licenses.
Herzlich willkommen bei der Zentralen Stelle Verpackungsregister
Erklärfilm zum Verpackungsgesetz: Welche Pflichten bestehen für welche Unternehmen nach dem Verpackungsgesetz?
Sie sind ausländischer Onlinehändler?
Möglichkeit der Bevollmächtigung für ausländische Verpflichtete
Explanatory film on key terminology of the Verpackungsgesetz (Packaging Act)
Kurzfilm Bevollmächtigung ausländischer Verpflichtete ohne eine bestehende Registrierung
Herzlich willkommen bei der Zentralen Stelle Verpackungsregister