Laws and regulations

Dutch Assay Act

The Assay Act requires ornamental and utility articles of precious metal intended for the Dutch market to be tested by an independent body.
Assay Office EWN is charged with this task as an independent administrative body.

Link Dutch Assay Act

Assaying Regulations

The Assaying Regulations are the “technical annex” of the Assay Act. They include rules for how to deal with exemptions, composite objects and the stamping of objects. The content marks are also laid down in the Assaying Regulations.

Link Assaying Regulations

Hallmarking Convention

The Netherlands is a member of the Hallmarking Convention.
The Convention for Assaying Precious Metals is an international agreement between several countries concerning the reciprocal trade in objects made of precious metals.
Members of the Convention are entitled to use the Common Control Marks (CCM). These CCM marks are recognised by each Member State. In addition, there are a number of countries that are no members but do accept the CCM hallmarks and regard the CCM hallmark as a “quality mark”

The treaty was signed in Vienna and came into force in 1975.

Link for more information on the Convention and for consulting Member States.

Hallmark types

You can choose from different assay hallmarks, in the Netherlands we have the following types:

National marks, small, new items

  • Responsibility mark
  • Fineness (purity) mark

 

National mark, large (threefold), new objects

  • Responsibility mark
  • Fineness (purity) mark
  • Assay Office mark
  • Date letter

National mark, occasions

  • Fineness (purity) mark

Hallmarking Convention (CCM)

  • Responsibility mark
  • Fineness (purity) mark
  • Common Control Mark
  • Assay Office Mark
Weight exemptions

Articles below a certain weight are exempt from hallmarking in the Netherlands:

  • gold below 1 gram
  • silver below 8 gram
  • platinum below 0,5 gram
Use of words when selling precious metal

Permitted use of words when presenting precious metal objects to the public. Read more.

Packing and Shipping

Register new shipment

New shipments can be registered on the Assay Office EWN online portal.

Log in

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Which parcel service should I use?

EWN recommends the services of Mikropakket. Mikropakket calls at EWN twice a day. Of course you may also use other parcel services, as they call at EWN daily.

Shipping address:
EWN
Polderboskdyk 13a
8501 ZJ Joure, Netherlands

How long does it take to process my products?

Assay Office EWN strives to return all shipments within two to three working days, and usually the same day, without any surcharge. Urgent orders may occasionally be taken, but our policy is that all objects undergo the testing process at equal lead times.

Ready-while-you-wait service

You may contact us for small rush orders which will be planned so you can bring them in and wait for them to be tested. There is no surcharge for this service.

How do I deliver my products?

To avoid unnecessary costs, it is advisable to pack your goods and deliver them in so-called transport boxes.
The advantage of these boxes is that you can place your goods in/on/in between the foam without having to use foil and/or plastic bags as extra packaging. You can borrow the EWN transport boxes free of charge. Inquire about the possibilities at our logistics department.

Please note: your goods will always be returned in the same packaging.

Have the shipment collected by Assay Office EWN

EWN also offers the possibility to collect your shipment from your premises for insured transport by your own external service staff member. Contact our logistics department and ask about the possibilities.

Assaying

Do I need to enclose test material?

If you have manufactured the objects yourself, please send test material with the batch for the content test:

  • Silver: 0.5 grams per alloy
    for potentiometric silver titration
  • Gold 0.1 grams of gold per alloy
    for the purpose of (micro)cupellation
Precious metal tests

Our assayers can determine the precious metal content of your objects by means of:

  • touchstone method
  • XRF (X-ray fluorescence)

In addition, the content test can be carried out by means of:

  • Gold: (micro) cupellation
  • Silver: potentiometric titration
Is testing destructive?

No, testing the homogeneity of the objects you offer is not destructive. For this, our assayers use the touchstone method and the XRF (X-ray).

Finished product or parts?

It is preferable to offer your finished products. However, it is also possible to offer unfinished items, or to offer an item in parts. Please, make sure that all parts are sent along (including any base parts).

Mixed-metal (precious metal)

We can test mixed-metal items of different types of precious metal. For example a yellow gold ring with a platinum setting.

Mixed-metal items consisting of different contents of the same precious metal are hallmarked for the lowest precious metal present. For example, a 14-carat gold ring with an 18-carat setting will be hallmarked on the lowest level present, in this case 14-carat.

Multi-metal items

Composite objects consisting of a precious metal and a base metal can be tested under the following conditions:

  • the base metal is clearly visible (to the consumer)
  • the word metal (or MET) is marked in the base part

Responsibility mark

What is a responsibility mark?

In addition to the fineness marks, the responsibility mark (RM) must also be applied to the object. In this way it can be traced who put the object on the market.

Application for new RM

As an entrepreneur you can apply for a new RM through Assay Office EWN.

The application can be submitted online.

What stamp?

When applying for a new RM you can also choose your type of stamp.

  • Straight stamp: only for stamping flat objects
  • Knee stamp: for both flat objects and for the inside of rings/bracelets
  • Roll stamp: combined stamp with hallmark and RM. This stamp is only suitable for rings, especially wedding rings.
  • Digital: a digital RM means a digital drawing for the laser software to engrave your RM with our laser equipment.
Using the RM from EWN

If you do not yet have your own RM, you can offer articles for inspection. These are then (temporarily) provided with the EWN RM and a content mark.

May I stamp my own RM?

Yes, you are allowed to keep your RM stamp for use on your own objects. EWN also offers the possibility to keep your RM stamp free of charge. As soon as you offer a shipment for inspection, EWN can immediately apply your RM.

Laser engraving

Why laser engraving?

You have the choice between applying test marks through stamping or laser engraving.

If your preference is not feasible, we will contact you.
Laser engraving has advantages in the case of extremely expensive, fragile and/or hollow articles.

In addition, laser engraving does not move any material as is the case with stamping.

Laser engraved logos

In addition to the legally required quality marks, we can also provide your objects with your company logo or other logos. Please contact us and ask for the possibilities.

Laser engraved text

Texts with all common fonts can be used in our laser software. Handwritten texts are also possible.
Please contact us and ask for the possibilities.

Miscellaneous

Complaints

Within 14 days after receipt of the goods you can complain by submitting your complaint in writing.

We would like to refer you to our General Terms and Conditions (article 9) for further information.

The complaints procedure is available on request.

Questions about your invoice?

Invoices will be sent to you by e-mail.

If you did not receive our invoice, please check your ‚Äúspam mail” first.

If you have a question about your invoice, please contact our accounts department.

Will I get a certificate

No, you will not receive a certificate or test report. The hallmark applied to your object is the actual certificate. You can however ask for a copy of reports on the basis of which a hallmark was applied.