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Second Hand Dealers Licence

The second hand dealers' licensing scheme is administered by the Licensing Team.

The Team are able to provide general guidance on the scheme but cannot assist you to complete your application form or provide legal advice on whether a licence is required. You should seek legal advice from a solicitor or advice centre you are unsure as to whether if you require a licence. 

Second Hand Dealer's that require a licence from the Council

1. In terms of Section 24 of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act, 1982, a "Second Hand Dealer" is defined as a person carrying on a business as a dealer in second hand goods or articles of any description and a licence will be required only by the owner or manager of the business and not by salesmen or other employees.

The Council is required to resolve which categories of second hand goods should be covered by the second hand dealers licensing scheme and at present a licence is required to carry on a business in the under noted second hand goods:

  • Stamp dealers
  • Second hand book dealers
  • Antique dealers
  • Second hand jewellery dealers
  • Dealers in second hand furniture
  • Dealers in second hand electrical and/or gas goods
  • Dealers in second hand general goods
  • Dealers in second hand motor vehicle

Exemptions from requiring a Second Hand Dealers Licence

Section 24(3) of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act, 1982 provides that second hand dealers licences shall not be required for carrying on the following businesses:

  • The business of a pawnbroker (that is to say, a person who under a regulated agreement under the Consumer Credit Act, 1974, takes an article in pawn).
  • A business as a wholesale dealer purchasing exclusively from a second hand dealers licensed under the Civic Government (Scotland) Act, 1982.
  • A business which is charitable for the purpose of the Income Tax Acts.
  • A business as a dealer in second hand goods or articles incidentally to another business not being that of a dealer in such goods or articles (eg when used articles are taken in part exchange against new articles)
  • A business either of financing the acquisition of goods by means of hire purchase agreements, conditional sale agreements or credit sales agreements (as defined in Section 189(1) of the Consumer Credit Act, 1974) or are financing the use of goods by means of hiring agreements.
How do you apply for a Second Hand Dealers Licence?

If you want to apply for a second hand dealers licence you must submit an application form along with the required documents and the appropriate fee, details of these can be found in the guidance notes attached to the application.

If you require a temporary licence that allows you to operate at a particular event and to allow time for your application to be processed it should preferably be made at least 3 months before the date of the particular event and any application must be received at least 35 days in advance of the date of the event.

All applications are copied to the Council's advisors who can recommend that conditions in addition to the standard conditions detailed on this page are attached to the licence when granted. If you do not want to accept any recommended conditions then the application would be referred to the Licensing Committee for a decision to be made regarding which conditions will apply to your licence. Mandatory background checks will be carried out on all applicants by Police Scotland and applicants' details will be retained on computer.  You will be contacted once vetting is complete.

How will my application be decided?

Applications which do not attract any adverse comments/objections are granted by the Chief Solicitor under delegated powers. All other applications require to be referred to the Licensing Committee for determination. You will be advised if your application is being referred to the Licensing Committee. The Committee meets on a monthly basis.

We have nine months in which to determine your application however the majority of applications are determined within 60 days.

How do you complain about a licence holder?

Complaints regarding licence holders may be made to the Licensing Team. These should be made in writing by email or letter providing full details of the nature of the complaint and sent to the Licensing Team using the contact details box.

Complaints regarding unlicensed second hand dealers should be made to Police Scotland by calling 101.

How much are the application and renewal fees?

More information regarding  pdf icon current application fees [23kb]​ 

Where can I get an application form?

Application forms which have guidance notes attached to them are available to download from the Related Documents section on this page.