Guidance for retailers

Trading Standards is responsible for enforcing the laws that protect young people by setting age restrictions for the sale of certain products.

If you sell age restricted products you should take precautions to avoid breaking the law. This includes:

  • training your staff and keep records of all training
  • asking staff to sign training records to confirm that they have received the training
  • ensuring that staff are aware of proof of age cards and ask for them if they are unsure of a customer's age
  • displaying the statutory warning notices for cigarettes and fireworks.
  • considering other warning notices for customers and reminders for staff.
  • keeping a refusals register and instructing staff to record when they refuse to sell a restricted product
  • refusing to sell to anyone whose age you are unsure of.

Download a refusals register

Trading Standards provide comprehensive advice for businesses. Remember that both the manager/owner of the business and the employee who sells an age restricted product to someone underage may be prosecuted for an illegal sale.