Distributor's obligations

Distributor refers to a company that sells a product that has been manufactured in the EU or already been placed on the EU market. Distributors include retailers and wholesalers, along with commercial sellers of used goods, such as recycling centres and flea markets.

The distributor is considered to be the manufacturer if the distributor

  • places a product on the market under its name or a trademark
  • alters a product that has already been placed on the market in a manner that may affect the compliance with the applicable requirements.

What must be done before a product is put on sale?

The distributor must check that the product bears the required markings and that the required documents, instructions and safety information in Finnish and Swedish have been included with the product. If the manufacturer or importer has not translated the instructions and safety information in Finnish and Swedish, the distributor is responsible for translating them.

The distributor must ensure that the storage or transport conditions do not jeopardise product compliance.

Obligations after selling the product 

The distributor must, for 10 years after the product is sold, keep the identifying information of both the companies that have supplied the distributor products and the companies to whom the distributor has delivered products.

At the request of Tukes, the distributor must provide all the information and documentation necessary to demonstrate the conformity of the product. The distributor must co-operate with the market surveillance authority.

What if the product is non-compliant?

The distributor may offer only compliant products for sale.

If the distributor suspects that a product the distributor sells is not compliant, the distributor must ensure that the manufacturer, importer or, if necessary, the distributor itself takes the necessary actions. These actions include, for example

  • bringing the product into conformity
  • removing the product from the market
  • organising a product recall

If the properties of a product present a risk to safety, health or the environment, the distributor must inform the market surveillance authority of the non-compliance of the product and of any actions taken by the distributor.

Distributor's obligations in brief

Check the markings and documents
The product must carry the required markings.

Check the instructions and safety information
The required instructions and safety information in Finnish and Swedish must be included with the product.

Store for 10 years
Identifying information of both the companies that have supplied you products and the companies to whom you have delivered products as a distributor.

A non-compliant product?
Take immediate action.

See also

Obligations of the manufacturer, importer and seller in table format

CE marking

Product labelling

Operating instructions

EU Declaration of Conformity

Manufacturer's obligations

Website of the Commission on CE marking