What Legal Information Do You Need on Your Website?

After spending countless hours designing your website, crafting compelling content, and optimising its functionality, there’s still one crucial aspect that often gets overlooked: legal compliance. As a website owner, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your website meets all relevant legal requirements.

While this article is not an exhaustive list of legal requirements across all industries, it provides a helpful guide for business owners looking to align their website with UK company and data protection laws.

1. Company Information

If you run a business in the UK, it’s essential to include specific information on your website. Failure to do so could put you in breach of UK company law. You don’t need to include this information on every page, but it should be easy to find. Common locations are on “Contact Us” or “About Us” pages, or in the website footer to improve accessibility and SEO.

Registered Companies

If you’re a registered company, ensure the following corporate information is displayed on your website:

  • Company name
  • Registered number
  • Place of registration (e.g., England and Wales)
  • Registered office address
  • Postal address (if different from the registered office)
  • Email address
  • Contact details by non-electronic means (i.e., phone or mail)
  • VAT registration number (if applicable)
  • Relevant trade bodies or regulatory authorities (if applicable) (e.g., the FCA)
Unregistered Companies

If you’re not a registered company, at a minimum, display:

  • Business name (include both your trading and actual names if different)
  • Trading address
  • Business email and phone number
  • VAT registration number (if applicable)

Ensure your company information is up-to-date and easily accessible on your website. Contact us for help in integrating this information seamlessly.

2. Privacy Notice

Data protection is crucial. If your business collects, stores, or sends personal data, you must comply with UK data protection laws. Personal data includes any information relating to an identifiable person, such as a name, address, or email. A privacy notice (also known as a privacy policy) is vital for UK GDPR compliance.

What is a Privacy Notice?

A privacy notice explains:

  • The types of personal data collected
  • How the data is used
  • Individual rights regarding their data
  • Whether data is shared with third parties
  • How the data is stored and protected

Your privacy notice should be specific to your business, detailing the types of personal information collected and its use.

3. Cookie Notice

Most websites use cookies. If yours does, you need a cookie notice to comply with UK data protection laws and to secure user consent.

What are Cookies?

Cookies are tiny data files placed on a visitor’s device when they visit a website, storing information about their visit. They help remember user preferences, login details, and can assist in targeted advertising.

What’s a Cookie Notice?

A cookie notice lists the cookies used on a website and details their purpose, how they track data, and where this data is sent.

4. Website Terms of Use

Setting out your website’s terms of use is a good practice. This document explains how visitors can use your site, who owns the content, and your company’s liability limitations.

What Should Be Included?
  • Do’s and Don’ts: Rules and restrictions for site usage.
  • Use and Ownership of IP: Protect your intellectual property from being copied without permission.
  • Liability, Law, and Complaints: Who is liable for what, how users can complain, and applicable laws.

5. Website Legal Notices

Alongside your terms of use, include any important warnings or statements intended to have legal effects, known as website legal notices or disclaimers.

What Should Be Included?
  • Your rights to modify or remove the site
  • Disclaimers regarding the information provided on your site

Ensure your legal notices are clear, comprehensive and easy to find in your navigation structure.

Conclusion

Ensuring your website is legally compliant protects your business and builds trust with your customers. By having the correct legal information and documents in place, you can avoid potential legal issues and disputes.

Review and update your website’s legal information today. Contact Helios Web Design to get started.

For more information on how to make your website legally compliant and optimise it for success, visit Helios Web Design.

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