Does your Belgian business have a website, facebook page or some other kind of online platform that contains personalized information about your business?  Belgian law requires you to mention certain information on these online platforms.

The goal is to maximize transparency and accessibility.  An analysis by the Federal Public Service (FPS) Economics revealed that more than half of businesses are not compliant.  In response to this statistic, the FPS has created a checklist which provides a clear overview of the legal requirements.

Legal requirements

Name

This is the name of your business.  If there is no business name, then you state your own name.

Address

This is your business address: the address where your business is located, where the day to day operations are carried out.

Contact information

This is the contact information that allows for fast and efficient communication, such as a phone number or email address.  If certain conditions are met, an electronic form can be used instead of an email address.

In that case, the electronic form has to:

    • be easily, directly and permanently accessible;
    • contain a blank field for the internet user; and
    • allow for the possibility to attach a file.

Once the form is sent by the internet user, an automatic and immediate confirmation has to be sent containing the completed form; this can appear on the screen but at all times has to be emailed to the internet user.  Additionally, in direct email communications with the internet user, an actual working email address has to be used that allows for quick communication between the parties.

Business number 

Your business number (‘ondernemingsnummer’) is your business’s unique identification number, as assigned by the Registry for Businesses (Kruispuntbank voor Ondernemingen – a.k.a. KBO).

Supervising authority

If you need a license to exercise your profession/trade then you are required to mention the name and contact information of the supervising authority.

Regulated profession

If your profession is regulated, name the professional association of which you are a member, state your official title and the place where it is recognized, and be sure to refer to the regulations of the association.

VAT-number

In case you have a VAT-number, this has to be mentioned as well.

Code of Conduct

In case your business has signed a Code of Conduct, then this has to be mentioned; also let the internet user know where they can find it.

Warning and fine

If this required information is not mentioned, the FPS Economics can issue a warning of non-compliance. If this warning is ignored, one risks getting fined.

Important to know is that these regulations are applicable regardless of whether or not the website is used to sell goods or services.  Thus, even purely informative websites need to meet these requirements.  In the event you do have a webshop, your website will need to meet additional requirements.

Contact

Feel free to contact aternio and we can screen your website to ensure that it meets all of the legal requirements.