Legal Responsibilities For Website Owners

The purpose of this information is to make you aware of your legal responsibilities as a website owner operating in the UK. Whilst we appreciate this is probably not a subject that is of great interest to you, we are merely making you aware of your obligations. What action you take from this point onwards is entirely your decision – our job is merely to make you aware of any potential issues you should consider, not to provide legal solutions to those issues.

First and foremost, neither Avara nor any of our staff are qualified to offer ANY legal advice regarding the obligations you have whilst operating your website in the UK. If you have ANY doubts regarding the compliance of your website with UK or EU law then you should seek specialist legal advice.

We do not accept ANY responsibility for legal compliance of your website or it’s content.

The four key areas that you need to be aware of are as follows:

  • Your website privacy policy
  • Your website terms of use (disclaimer)
  • Your website cookies policy and opt-out
  • Your website content and copyright

Privacy Policy & Website Terms of Use

For most of our Clients, we have added standard template-based forms supplied by SEQ Legal (link opens in new tab/window). The addition of these templates to your website by us is nothing more than a goodwill gesture and we do not accept any responsibility for the legal compliance of these templates. We have added these templates ready for you to edit them with your own business details however, as these pages form a legal contract, we cannot add your business details as we are not able to form such a contract on your behalf.

We would strongly suggest that if you are in any doubt regarding risks or potential liabilities through using these templates, you should seek specialist legal advice.

If your website does not contain either of these policies then it is your responsibility – we can only inform you of the requirement to have them.

Use of Cookies

Cookies are a small piece of code that is downloaded to your website visitors computer or device when they visit your website.

Your website WILL be using cookies if:

  • Your website uses WordPress as it’s content management system (CMS)
  • You have any analytical scripts running on your website (i.e. Google Analytics or Piwik)
  • Your website has e-commerce (on-line shopping) capability
  • You have any type of dynamic social media buttons (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, etc.) on your website

There may be other scripts on your website that use cookies but the above are the primary ones that are typically used on the websites we create.

In May 2011, the Information Commissioners Office in the UK ruled that all UK-based websites should provide a single-click, cookie opt-out function for their website visitors. More information can be found on their website (link opens in new tab/window).

It is entirely your responsibility as a website owner in the UK to ensure that your website is compliant with this law. If you are unsure about if your website uses certain cookies or if it is currently compliant then it is your decision and responsibility if you wish to seek appropriate legal advice.

Copyright of Content

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have legal right to use any written content or images in your website. We do not accept any liability for any breaches of copyright on your website or subsequent action taken by the copyright holder.

If you are unsure whether your website content could be infringing a copyright then we strongly suggest that you seek legal advice from a qualified expert.

More information on copyright and intellectual rights can be found here (link opens in new tab/window).

Why is this Important?

It is a sad fact that we now live in a highly litigious society. Whilst we have never had experience of any legal issues regarding websites we’ve either owned or worked on, we need to ensure that our Clients understand their legal responsibilities and that we, as website designers & developers, cannot provide legal advice or solutions, nor provide any assurances to the legal compliance of any content on your website.

We are providing this information as a goodwill gesture and if you decide to take no action, that is entirely your prerogative; our role is to simply make you aware of potential obligations you might have.

Again, we would stress the fact that if you have ANY doubts about the legal compliance or potential liabilities within your website, you should seek appropriate legal advice.

In order to protect our business and confirm that you have read and understand the content of this page, please complete the form below. We reserve the right to withdraw future support if you fail to submit the form. Failure to submit the form does NOT negate your legal responsibilities for operating your website.