Scrap metal dealers

Any person or business that operates a site in Watford buying and selling scrap metal and motor salvage, or who collects door to door within Watford, must be licensed.

Applicants must provide:

  • a completed application form
  • details of the bank account/s that will be used for payments
  • criminal record disclosures for each applicant, partner or director, and site manager
  • the fee

You must also state how you will verify your customers’ details and keep this information secure.

Please see our guidance notes for information on how to complete the application form.

Basic criminal records disclosures can be obtained from Your disclosure must be no more than one month old when you apply.

Licences last for three years. Applications will be refused if:

  • the applicant or site manager have criminal convictions
  • a licence has previously been breached, refused or revoked
  • an environmental permit has previously been breached, refused or revoked
  • the applicant is unable to show that they will comply with the Scrap Metal Dealer’s Act 2013

Things you need to know

  • You must obtain a waste transfer licence from the Environment Agency and may also need other permits depending upon your business.
  • You may also need to register with the Information Commission.
  • We aim to inform you of the outcome of your application within 25 working days. You may assume you have been successful if you have not heard from us within this time frame.
  • It is illegal to pay cash for any scrap metal or motor salvage.
  • Dealers must keep records of all items they receive and sell, and must confirm the identity of the sellers and record this information too.
  • If a site manager changes, a new manager must be named.
  • A collectors licence only allows the licence holder to collect in the area covered by their licence.

The fees are the same for both licences. A new licence costs £252.

A licence variation, change of name, address, and replacement licence, all cost £52.

A site licence allows the licence holder to operate a site and to collect from anywhere.

Appeals against decisions to refuse a licence or to add conditions to a licence may be made to the magistrates’ court within 21 days of a decision.

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