A Short Explanation of the Casual Trading Act.
The main reason for the 1995 Casual trading Act is:
To give the Local Authorities the power to manage , regulate, set fees, allot spaces and control market trading in their local area.
Brief Background of this act
Under the 1980 Casual Trading Act the Government (Dept of Environment) were the only people who could issue a casual trading licence, but they had no way of regulating and managing markets in different local authority areas.
Main Differences for traders since the act came in
Since the introduction of the 1995 Casual trading Act a trader now has to apply to each Local Authority for a casual trading licence, where as under the 1980 act he would only have to apply for a licence from the government, which means that if a trader intends to sell at six different markets he will have to have six licenses, each one costing an awful lot more than one national licence.
What powers do local Authorities have
Local Authorities now have the power to make bye-laws for casual trading in their areas. They also have the power to set fees, designate areas for trading manage and regulate trading.
Examples of licence fees
The best example of fees we have come across is where a local authority requests a £20.00 licence fee and £5.00 per day trading. Other Local authorities are requesting fees between £200.00 and £750.00 for one days trading per week to be paid annually in advance.
P.R.S.I and insurance requirements
When applying now for a casual trading licence it is required by law that a person must supply a PRSI number and the local authority is obliged to inform the department of Social Welfare and the Revenue Commissioners that the person named on the application has applied for a Casual Trading Licence
It is also a requirement that a person applying for a casual trading licence must keep the local authority indemnified from any accident caused by a person engaged in casual trading by way of public liability insurance.
Size of pitches and issues related to this
Local Authorities are now giving out pitches of various sizes, in some cases the size of the pitch is far to small and traders find it unworkable. The option is there for a larger pitch but unfortunately traders requiring a larger pitch must pay for two or three licenses at a cost which makes it uneconomical to trade on the market.
What rights do traders have
Under the Casual Trading Act a trader who is aggrieved by bye-laws ( other than bye-laws under section 2(d) the fixing of fees ) can appeal to the courts which in our opinion that a Local Authority can set fees at any price and there is nothing a trader can do about it. Other rights a trader would have would be under common law but would have to be proved in the courts.