A new European law came into effect on January 1st that requires all UK companies to put a host of information on their web sites and email signatures, or else face hefty fines for breaching the “Companies Act”.
Email and diary software company Softalk warns that small and medium size companies are particularly at risk of fines as most do not currently include all of the essential information in their email signatures. Every company needs to list its company registration number, place of registration and registered office address on its website and in emails.
Softalk joint CEO Simon Bates said: “Small and medium size businesses have to cope with more and more draconian regulations. Owners and directors now face fines if their employees forget to include this information in email signatures. It is vital that they install and update software that enables them to append legal disclaimers to every email.” (and Softalk will be just the company to provide it, no doubt…)
The advice (boring though it might be) is to have each email signature containing:
* Company name and geographic address, including both the trading and registered names if these are different. Both the trading address and the registered office address must be given.
* Company registration number and place of registration (e.g. company registered in England and Wales)
* If a business is a member of a trade or professional association,
membership details (including any registered number) should be shown.
* If the business has a VAT number it should be stated (prefixed with GB if it trades outside the UK)
Phew, laws eh? Gotta love ‘em. Sounds like the email signature is going to end up being longer than the message.
By Andy Merrett | January 8th, 2007