Certification Processes

Our certification and validation services are carried out in accordance with the provisions of ISO 17065:2012. It should be noted that, at present, none of the standards in place for age verification are eligible for UKAS accreditation under ISO 17065:2012, but it is hoped that in due course they will be.

Impartiality

We are committed to ensuring that our certification decisions are impartial. We have established an Impartiality Committee to provide independent review and oversight of quality management certification activities. The role of this Committee is to review our certification activities and verify that they are performed impartially without undue influences that might affect the impartiality of services offered.

The main responsibilities of the Impartiality Committee are:
  • To assist with the development of policies relating to the impartiality of our certification services
  • To periodically review the impartiality of our certification processes.
  • To advise on matters affecting confidence in certification, including openness and public perception
  • To prevent commercial or other considerations from affecting the objective provision of certification services
  • To ensure that the actions of the committee itself do not present any risks to impartiality
Members of the Impartiality Committee are selected on the basis of the following:
  • Experience and expertise in the particular profession (normally a minimum of 10 years’ industry experience would be required)
  • Their accessibility to a similar type of industry in the region
  • Professional standing / reputation

Competency

We invest in our people to make them the very best at what they do. We believe in continuous personal and professional development of both our staff and our contractors.
Our team consists of fully qualified trading standards professionals and audit professionals. We are bound by the code of professional conduct of the Chartered Trading Standards Institute. Our team have substantial experience of age verification techniques, policies and procedures in multiple industries.

Consistency

We operate quality control measures to guarantee a consistency of approach. We have a three-stage complaints and appeals process with clear routes for applicants and others to challenge decisions.
We manage our audits using the latest audit tracking technology, with audit reports, non conformances and required actions shared instantly and electronically.
We have a formal certification complaints and appeals process, which is overseen by our Certification Panel.
Should you disagree with our decision you can ask us to review it. If you still disagree with our decision, you can ask us to refer your application for certification to our Certification Panel.

Complaints & Appeals

We hope that you are never dissatisfied with our service, but we view complaints as an opportunity to learn and improve for the future – as well as a chance to put things right for the person or organisation involved. Should you need to complain, we want you to know that we will take your dissatisfaction seriously, make it easy for you to let us know about it, and keep you updated as it goes through our clear, documented process and procedure.
If you have a complaint about any aspect of our service you can contact us in one of the following ways:
  • By telephone: 0345 257 0018
  • From our website through the Contact Us page
  • By email: info@underagesales.co.uk
  • Or by letter to The Complaints Manager, Age Check Certification Scheme, Under Age Sales Ltd, 316 Broadstone Mill, Broadstone Road, Stockport, SK5 7DL
We find that most issues can be resolved quickly and informally, but if not, or if you are not satisfied with the outcome, your complaint will enter our process to ensure that you are treated fairly and reasonably.
  • The complaint should be acknowledged in writing by the person handling the complaint within a maximum of two weeks, and will say who is dealing with the complaint and when you can expect a reply.
  • We aim to give you a definitive reply within four weeks. If this is not possible because, for example, an investigation has not been fully completed, a progress report will be sent with an indication of when a full reply will be given.
  • We will describe the action taken to investigate the complaint, the conclusions from the investigation, and any action taken as a result of the complaint.
  • If you feel that the problem has not been satisfactorily resolved, you can appeal the outcome and request that the complaint is reviewed by the Certification Panel. As above, you should expect to receive confirmation of the escalation of the complaint, who is dealing with it and when you can expect a reply, within two weeks, and a formal response within a maximum of four weeks.
  • You have the right to appeal the decision by referral to an Independent Arbitrator. We will facilitate this process by ensuring that you are made aware of the process and we will help you make the appeal. Within the Scheme Terms and Conditions, both parties agree that any dispute that cannot be resolved can be settled under the Rules of Arbitration by one or more arbitrators appointed by joint agreement of the parties or, if agreement cannot be gained, the Arbitrator will be appointed by the Centre for Dispute Resolution.