Is PAT electectrical testing a legal requirement in NI?

edited 27 February 2019 at 9:25AM in N. Ireland
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Mistral001Mistral001 Forumite
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edited 27 February 2019 at 9:25AM in N. Ireland
Is PAT (portable appliance testing) a legal requirement in NI like it is in England?

I know many consumer laws put on the statute book in the rest of the UK have not been brought in in NI (eg law on free water in restaurants serving alcohol). Is the PAT law one such law?

I rarely see PAT labels on electrical appliances such as lamps and radios in charity shops or at car boot sales which would indicate that there is no such law in NI. In fact in the hundreds of times I have been to charity shops and car boot sales I have only seen a PAT label once.

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  • guirimanguiriman Forumite
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    Well according to this it's not a legal requirement in England, just an effective way to ensure compliance:
    https://www.pat.org.uk/is-pat-testing-a-legal-requirement/
  • unforeseenunforeseen Forumite
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    PAT per se isn't a legal requirement hower the employer needs to meet the requirements of PUWER 1989 Reg 4(1) and Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 Reg 4(2).

    PAT achieves this. It could be argued that buying something from a charity shop that has no certification that it is safe could make the charity liable in case of lethal and non-lethal faults.
  • Mistral001Mistral001 Forumite
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    unforeseen wrote: »
    PAT per se isn't a legal requirement hower the employer needs to meet the requirements of PUWER 1989 Reg 4(1) and Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 Reg 4(2).

    PAT achieves this. It could be argued that buying something from a charity shop that has no certification that it is safe could make the charity liable in case of lethal and non-lethal faults.


    So if you are selling say a lamp on ebay, as long as the buyer is not a business with employees, there is no requirement to have it tested before selling it?
  • edited 27 February 2019 at 8:55PM
    unforeseenunforeseen Forumite
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    edited 27 February 2019 at 8:55PM
    If you are selling it as a private seller there is no requirement.

    The problem with getting a single item tested is the cost. Most testers have a minimum price which can be £25 or more. That price will include testing of a number of devices.

    Charity shops or anybody selling second hand equipment must test all electrical equipment before selling it, even if only a visual check by a qualified person (if the class dictates that) . There should obviously be some verifiable record of this and that is what a PAT label will show.

    New electrical equipment is assumed to be electrically safe at point of sale, however lots of firms will want any private electrical equipment brought onto their premises for use has a record of testing regardless of it being new or used.


    https://www.pat.org.uk
  • Mistral001Mistral001 Forumite
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    So it is the same in NI and the rest of the UK. Well that has cleared that up.

    I found this thread about the subject there seems to some dispute over whether private sales are totally "buyer beware" in terms of whether they are safe or not. It looks like there the law is a bit grey in this area.

    https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=3742805

    I have had a look on ebay and most lamps or other electrical items which have been refurbished and being sold privately are listed as "not PAT tested" or "not tested, sold for spares" if they have not been tested.
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