Doing dropshipping, just like doing a classic e-commerce site, is framed by certain legal obligations and requires the respect of certain laws.
Although many e-merchants do not often take this into account, failure to comply with these rules can result in a fine of up to 15 000€…. I will present you the different legal obligations to create your dropshipping website in all regularity.
Registering as a business
The first step to opening a dropshipping website is to register as a business. As this is an income-generating activity, the law requires you to register.
However, to start and test your dropshipping activity, you can of course start by registering as an auto-entrepreneur.
This option allows you to start your store very quickly and legally. To create the micro-entrepreneur status, nothing could be easier. Go to https://www.lautoentrepreneur.fr/ and fill in the form adapted to the creation of the micro-enterprise. It only takes a few minutes!
Legal requirements for your dropshipping store
In addition to the declaration of your activity, there are also certain obligations that you must apply for your dropshipping site.
Legal Notice and General Conditions of Sale
The legal notice and the general terms and conditions of sale are without any doubt the basic information that must appear on any professional online sales site.
On the one hand, the legal notice includes all the data about your company: your name as well as your contact information, the registration number… On the other hand, the terms and conditions describe your sales process: delivery times, right of withdrawal, payment method, etc.
The Hamon law
When talking about legal obligations in e-commerce and dropshipping, it is impossible not to mention the Hamon law, which came into force in June 2014 and completes the various rules governing the practice of online sales.
According to Hamon law, all websites must display a message window explaining that your site collects cookies that the visitor must accept.
The sales tunnel must generally describe the different steps of an order to the user. To do this, it must include at least the 3 phases below:
- The summary of the order, the total cost of the transaction as well as the information on the delivery;
- The possibility to modify the order, the delivery, and the number of products;
- The finalization of the order.
The customer must always be informed of each action he performs on your dropshipping e-commerce store.
When he is going to place an order, the means with which he makes the payment… He must also have the possibility to go back and modify his order at any time.
Under Hamon law, the delivery period must not exceed 30 days. Beyond this period, your customer can claim a refund.
Right of withdrawal after receipt of the order
If previously, the customer was only entitled to 7 days to return his order and get a refund, now with the Hamon law, he is entitled to up to 14 days to do so, without having to provide any justification. You must also make the refund within 14 days after the request of the customer against 30 days before.
Summary of the order
You must send by email a summary of the order to your customer as well as the invoice with the different products purchased.
Risks in case of non-compliance with these obligations
The non-respect of these different obligations in dropshipping leads to certain sanctions such as a fine ranging from 3000 to 15 000€ required by the DGCCRF. Of course, this is in the worst case, but it is preferable to be in order with the law and avoid this type of situation.
Obligation to keep accounts
As a company, you must keep accounts. However, this is not mandatory if you have the status of micro-entrepreneur. You can do it yourself.
You now know the importance of respecting these different obligations.
Although it is not interesting at first sight, neglecting the legislation can lead to certain inconveniences such as the payment of an important fine that can be harmful to your cash flow and your dropshipping store.