Scrap metal dealer licensing


The law requires all scrap metal dealers to hold a licence with their local authority.

What is scrap metal

Scrap metal includes:

  • any old, waste or discarded metal or metallic material
  • any product, article or assembly which is made from or contains metal and is broken, worn out or regarded by its last holder as having reached the end of its useful life

The following are not considered to be scrap metal:

  • gold
  • silver
  • any alloy of which 2% or more by weight is attributable to gold or silver

Types of licence

There are 2 types of licence:

A licence can be issued to an individual, a partnership, or a company. You cannot hold both a site and collector's licence issued by the same council at the same time.

Site licences and collector's licences are each valid for 3 years.

Site operators and collectors must keep records, including:

  • records of metal received and disposed of
  • details of who metal was received from
  • the documents used to verify the name and address of the supplier
  • the payment

For more information, go to:


Licence type Site Collector
New £540 £350
Renewal £450 £295
Variation £130 £130