All devices using a plug or being operated by batteries/accumulators. Devices which are designed for the use with AC volting of max. 1000V resp. DC volting of max. 1500 V.
The obligation to taking back is limited to devices with an edge length >25 cm from private households (as defined by the German Waste Management and Product Recycling Act) as well as to old appliances from other origin, provided that the normal household quantity of 5 devices is not exceeded.
All waste appliances – regardless of their edge length – have to be taken back if the customer buys a new device of the same type and with almost the same functions. The return can either take place at the point of supply or within close proximity (§17, Section 1, No. 1)
The retailer has to bear the costs for both, the 0:1 and the 1:1 return. Consumers have to be informed on the return options and must not be referred to the next municipal collection point.
Online retailers are not allowed to charge any costs for the return of the WEEE with an edge length of >25 cm. In case of a 1:1 Return, the customer has to indicate when concluding the contract that he would like to return an old device without any costs when the new one is delivered.
The following online retailers are concerned:
For the fixed location retailers, these 400 m² include the total space on which electrical and electronic devices are being distributed.
For online retailers, the storage- and dispatch space for electrical and electronic devices is measured. Not only the ground space but also the shelf space is decisive.
Retailers with several storage- and dispatch space locations do not have to add their ground spaces. Only the storage space from which the dispatch is made is relevant. Basis for the calculation of the 400 m² is the largest storage space. In consequence, if a retailer’s basic- and storage space is 400 m², he is according to ElektroG obliged to take back waste electrical and electronic devices.
In this case, the retailer is responsible for the establishment of collection points.
The obligation to taking back only applies to sold devices. Rental devices are excluded from the obligation to taking back if they will not be for sale in the future.
The 400 m² refer to the storage- and dispatch spaces at one location in Germany. The space on which parcels are packed or commissioned is considered as dispatch space. As far as the storage space is concerned, the shelf space and not the ground space is relevant. Storage- and dispatch spaces abroad will not be considered.
If retailers are using online market places as Ebay or Amazon in order to distribute their electrical and electronic devises, the ElektroG2 obligations apply to them if they manage the logistics resp. the dispatch themselves and have shelf spaces exceeding 400 m².
The obligation to take back applies also to retailers who do not have their own dispatch- and storage space and have rented or leased at least 400 m² for electrical and electronic devices.
There is also a take-back obligation for retailers who do not stock devices themselves but have the items offered on an online marketplace dispatched to the customer directly by the sub-supplier. Of course, this applies only if the sub-suppliers’ dispatch- and storage space for electrical and electronic devices exceeds 400 m².
As soon as a retailer – no matter if fixed location or online – has 400 m² or more sales, storage or shelf space, he has to register his business at the EAR Foundation. Besides his own registration, he also has to indicate his points of return.
Yes, but your parcel service must have a valid waste transportation permit and must be able to conduct hazardous material transportation.
Retailers have to report the annual quantity of collected devices (separated in categories indicating the weight per category – see §29) if they recycle the devices themselves. Further reporting obligations occur if the retailer has outsourced the recycling. If the retailer does not process the equipment himself, he has to report to the EAR the quantities which he gives to public collection points and/or to manufacturers. This report to the EAR has to be effected by 30.04. of the following calendar year. The EAR Foundation is entitled to claim that the reported quantities according to §13, Abs. 1, No. 1 and 3 – 6 ElektroG will be confirmed by an independent expert (§13, Abs. 3, sentence 5 ElektroG).
All transports of waste electrical equipment have to be declared as waste transports (A-sign on the vehicle) according to §55 German Waste Management and Product Recycling Act. This also applies to retailers who transport their collected devices to a local collection point. The retailer also has to take care that his transport agents observe the A-Sign obligation. This obligation also applies to parcel service enterprises who collect and transport waste electrical devices from consumers on behalf of responsible distance sales merchants.
Both, online- and fixed location retailers have to inform the consumers about how they can return their old devices. Fixed location dealers can do this by erecting displays or posters and online retailers can inform consumers on their homepages. It is not sufficient to mention the possibilities for returning WEEE in the General Terms and Conditions of Sale. Furthermore, retailers have to explain the meaning of the symbol of the crossed out dust bin and they have to point out the personal responsibility of consumers with regard to the protection of personal data (§18(2)).
Retailers are obliged to give their collected waste electrical equipment exclusively to certified primary treatment facilities. To fulfill their reporting obligation, they have to claim the corresponding data in order to be able to comply with their reporting obligation.
Along with the update of ADR and RID Prescriptions beginning of the year 2015, several new requirements arise with regard to the collection and transport of waste electrical and electronic equipment containing lithium batteries or accumulators.
Lithium containing accumulators or batteries can cause dangerous reactions (fires, explosions). They are thus considered as hazardous goods and are subject to special transport instructions for the transport of hazardous goods.
Consumers are responsible for their personal data. Retailers have to inform their customers about their own responsibility with regard to the deletion of personal data in old electrical or electronic devices to be recycled.
German online retailers who deliver their electrical and electronic devices to other European Member Countries have to determine an assignee in this country. This assignee has to fulfill the obligations resulting from the new WEEE Guideline (RL 2012/19/EU) underlying the new ElektroG. If they do not have assignees, the retailers risk to receive governmental letters, as currently sent from Austria.
Additional reporting obligations towards the relevant authorities apply to retailers who are obliged to take back waste electrical and electronic devices but do not give this equipment back to the manufacturer nor to public collection points but process and recycle it themselves.
According to §36 ElektroG, revised version, the Federal Environment Agency is the “responsible authority”. The EAR Foundation is the “Clearing House” within the meaning of the law and is in charge of sovereign tasks: https://www.stiftung-EAR.de/