Regulations regarding the validity of a DoC can vary widely outside the EU. It’s essential to consult the specific regulations and guidelines for the region or country where the product is being sold. Some regions or countries may have specific expiration dates or renewal requirements for DoCs, but in many cases, as long as the product remains compliant with the applicable standards and regulations, the DoC remains valid.
After you have determined that your product meets all essential safety requirements, signed the Declaration of Conformity and affixed the CE marking to your product, the EC Declaration of Conformity is for most products valid for an indefinite amount of time. It remains valid for the product so long as no major product changes are made, for example:
- Change of original operation
- Change of original intended use
- Change of type
- Use of other components
- Use of new suppliers
In such cases, your product is considered a new product and a re-evaluation certification process must take place (possibly on the basis of the previous certification). A proposal for a new EC Declaration of Conformity, in accordance with new guidelines and/or standards, should then be developed.
The applicable regulations
In many cases, DoCs issued under European directives and regulations have indefinite validity as long as the product remains unchanged and continues to meet the relevant regulatory requirements. This means that, for most products, you do not need to renew the DoC regularly. Keep track of updates and amendments to the specific directives and regulations that apply to your product category. Changes may impact the validity of your existing DoC.
Some directives and regulations may have specific requirements regarding the renewal of DoCs. For instance, the Radio Equipment Directive (RED) requires a periodic assessment of compliance for certain radio equipment. In some cases, the involvement of a notified body (third-party certification body) is required for the assessment and verification of compliance. The role of notified bodies can vary depending on the directive, regulation and the product category.
Other things to keep in mind
The EC Declaration of Conformity must be kept at least ten years after the last date of manufacture of the product, unless the directive or regulation expressly indicates another term.
It’s crucial to stay informed about any changes in regulations that may affect the validity of your DoC, especially if you are exporting products to different regions. If you have questions about the duration of a DoC for a specific product or market, please contact us.
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