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TV licence advice for every device this Christmas

TV licence advice for every device this Christmas


TV Licensing - Students Core Image 1This year, smartphones overtook laptops as the most popular way of accessing the internet1 and with Christmas fast approaching, smartphones, tablets and laptops will continue to drive sales through December and well into the January sale period.


It’s important retailers stay abreast of TV Licensing rules about new technology, and the good news for customers is that their TV Licence will cover them to watch live TV on a phone – or a laptop or tablet – as well as any TV set in the home. A licence also covers them to watch on a mobile device when they are out and about, as long as the phone is not plugged in.2


TV Licensing - Tablet Viewing Core Image 1The rules for watching TV online are the same as watching TV any other way. It doesn’t matter what device you are using – if you are watching programmes at the same time as they are being shown on TV, or live on an online TV service, you need a TV Licence. But TV Licensing research has shown3 more than 31 percent of people across the UK mistakenly believe a TV Licence is not needed to watch live TV on a smartphone.


As 33 per cent of UK adults4 now see their smartphone as their most important


internet device – using it for an average of two hours a day to browse websites, use social media, and watch TV – it’s more important than ever customers understand the rules around TV Licensing.


TV Licensing - Watching on the Go Core Image 1Jason Hill, TV Licensing spokesperson, said: “We know people’s viewing habits have changed and we’re now watching TV on a range of devices. As smartphone use continues to rise, a greater number of people than ever before now have the capability to watch live TV on their mobile phone.


“Fortunately, a home licence covers everyone in the household to watch TV on their phone or tablet but it’s important all viewers are clear on when a TV licence is required.


“If your customers plan to watch or record live television, then they need a TV licence, regardless of what device they are using. A TV licence will cover them to watch live on any mobile device including a laptop, tablet or smart phone. Anyone found watching live TV without a licence risks prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000.”


For more information about when a licence is needed, visit


1 Ofcom Market communications report – August 2015:

2If you’re watching or recording live TV using a mobile device powered solely by its own internal batteries – like a smartphone, tablet or laptop – you will be covered by your home’s TV Licence, wherever you’re using it in the UK and Channel Islands. However, if you plug your device into the mains and use it to watch or record live TV away from home, you need to be covered by a separate TV Licence at that address (unless you’re in a vehicle or vessel like a train, car or boat). This is a legal regulation governing TV Licensing.–devices-and-online-top8
3 Research was conducted by Harris Interactive among 2,600 adults across the UK in April to June 2015 Base:
All adults aged 16+ who use a mobile phone- 1465 in 2013, 1670 in 2014.)
4 Ofcom Market communications report – August 2015:

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Increase in Standard Rate Insurance Premium Tax (IPT)

New Picture1

In the Summer Budget, announced 8 July 2015, the Chancellor confirmed an increase of 3.5% in the standard rate of IPT. This will take effect from 1 November 2015 and will affect the premiums payable for the majority of our customers.

The current rate charged of 6% will increase to 9.5% for all policies with a start/renewal date on or after 1 November 2015. You should therefore be prepared for an increase in your premiums as a direct result of this government tax increase.

Most insurers will be taking advantage of a ‘transitional period’ being allowed to them when applying this rate change to additional or return premiums for Mid-Term Adjustments (MTAs). This transition period expires at the end of 29 February 2016 and is only applicable to policies with a start date before 1 November 2015. For these policies, the tax change on MTAs will be applied as follows:

Refund Premiums:

  • Effective date of MTAs before 1 November 2015 = 6%
  • Effective date of MTAs on or after 1 November 2015 but before 1 March 2016 = 6%

Additional Premiums:

  • Effective date of MTAs before 1 November 2015 = 6%
  • Effective date of MTAs on or after 1 November 2015 = 9.5%

From 1 March 2016 all premiums will have the rate of 9.5% applied, regardless of the start date of the policy.

There are a few exemptions from IPT, which will apply to a small number of our customers, which include:

  • Most long-term insurance (i.e. Life insurance)
  • Insurance for commercial ships and aircraft
  • Insurance for marine cargo (goods in international transit)
  • Premiums for risks located outside the UK – these are usually liable to local tax rates, rather than UK.

If you would like to know more about these changes, information can be found on the government website or speak to your usual contact(s) at Coleman Insurance Brokers, who will be happy to help.

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Calendar of Events

Centre Meetings
Date Centre Venue
Thursday 22nd October Retra Scotland Committee
Thursday 3rd December North West Centre Meeting Ye Horns Inn, Goosnargh
Centre meetings include a trade show and lunch. Admission is free of charge.
If you would like to book to attend a centre meeting please email us at
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Product Recall Information
For further information regarding Product Recalls of Electrical Appliances from the Electricity Safety First, please link onto the information page on left: