This procedure describes the application of the requirements of Clause 7.11 of ISO/IEC 17065;.
Refer to ISO 17065: Clause 7.11
- Certification Director
- Senior conformity Engineer
- Managing Director
This procedure aims at describing in detail the internal operations concerning termination, reduction, suspensions, and withdrawals of the Certification/ Mark License.
Such actions may be classified as:
– termination of the right to use the certificate, license and mark of conformity.
– reduction in scope of certification to remove nonconforming product category.
– suspension of the right to use the certificate.
– withdrawal of the right to use the certificate.
– lifting of a suspension of the right to use the certificate (reinstatement).
The Certification director/Quality Manager will provide, on request, specific support for cases concerning warnings, suspensions and withdrawals.
The types of action described in this section are defined below:
Deed whereby QTC terminates or cancels the right to use the certificate when the licensee:
a. goes out of business.
b. permanently stopped producing the certified product.
c. cannot ensure compliance to a new requirement brought about by change in the certification scheme or applicable product standard.
d. requested for the cancellation.
Deed whereby QTC reduce the scope of certification such that nonconforming product(s) are excluded.
Deed whereby QTC promptly informs the licensee, after an immaterial technical or administrative breach of the contract, or a breach potentially leading to serious situations, as determined by QTC, and likely to involve a suspension or a withdrawal.
Deed whereby QTC suspends the license to use certificate for one or more products, after verifying a technical or administrative breach of contract, failure to meet the terms of an issued warning, or nonconformance found during surveillance such as:
The supplier shall not identify itself as certified and shall not use any Product certification mark on any products that have been offered under a suspended Product Certificate.
The suspension usually applies for a maximum of 30 days and gives the licensee the opportunity to take action in order to avoid certification withdrawal by QTC
Lifting of Suspension (Reinstatement of Certification)
Deed whereby QTC, after verifying complete fulfilment of contract obligations, notifies the licensee of the reinstatement of its right to use the certificate.
Deed whereby QTC withdraws the licensee’s right to use certificate, license and mark of conformity for one or more products (or for one or several company plants or units), consequent to a serious technical or administrative breach of contract, failure to meet the terms of an issued warning or following a further breach of contract when certification is already under suspension. The following are also grounds for withdrawal of certification:
a. Product defect found during surveillance is not corrected within the agreed period.
b. The mark of conformity is being used for non-certified products.
c. Failure to settle financial obligation to QTC.
d. Inadequate corrective actions taken to rectify the reasons for suspensions.
e. the Client takes inadequate measures in case of suspension.
f. the products do not conform to the standards, norms or regulations or are no longer offered.
g. QTC terminates its contract with the Client. In any of these cases, QTC has the right to withdraw the Product Certificate by informing the Client in writing or GSO authorities requested the withdrawal.
- Action Taken by QTC:
QTC reserves the right to suspend or withdraw the Certificate of Conformity/ Compliance at any time. The Certificate may be suspended should the Company:
- Failure to complete corrective actions within the agreed time;
- Misuse the Certification mark;
- Failure to comply with the financial requirements of the Agreement entered with QTC (Nonpayment of any of certification fees) or Bring QTC into disrepute in any way.
- The client’s certified management system has persistently or seriously failed to meet certification requirements, including requirements for the effectiveness of the quality management system”
- The certified client does not allow surveillance or re-certification audits to be conducted at the required and agreed surveillance frequencies.
- The certified client has voluntarily requested a suspension.
Any apparent contravention of Certification agreement which might lead to suspicion of certification will be brought to the attention of the Certification Manager who then investigates the report. Should the result of the investigation reveal non-compliance with Certification agreement, then QTC conformity Engineer/Senior Conformity engineer will issue a letter which will be sent to the client company outlining the non-compliance details and requesting their correction within an agreed and reasonable period of time (Usually QTC gives 30 days to make the correction needed, unless for a critical non-conformity timeline will be minimized), and explaining that their registration may be suspended until the corrective action is completed.
Should the necessary corrective action not be taken within the agreed period, then a further letter will be sent to the client company, informing them that their registration is suspended and another very limited time (30 days) will be given to client as a final chance to restore the certificate suspension by performing the corrective actions needed.
Whenever certification is suspended, QTC conformity Engineer/Senior Conformity engineer will communicate the actions needed to end suspension and restore certification for the client certified product in accordance with QTC Rules of certification and the scheme of certification, these actions depends on the defect that is committed by client and that lead to the suspension of the certificate.
QTC conformity Engineer/Senior Conformity engineer will make sure client understands the reason of suspension and the actions that need to be done to reverse the suspension decision.
In such cases the client will be asked to stop claiming that their organization is certified by QTC, and withdraw from use any letterheads, business cards, etc. that indicate QTC certification validity.
Once client takes measurements needed for restoring certification, client shall bring to QTC Knowledge by informing QTC conformity Engineer/Senior Conformity engineer with the actions and measurements taken by client (through any accessible means to QTC with providing the corrective actions taken in this regard.
Conformity Engineer/Senior Conformity engineer in return will transfer the request with supportive evidence to QTC Certification director to follow the same certification plan adopted by QTC (evaluation, review, decision) needed to resolve the suspension, similar to the core certification process i.e. ).QTC makes all necessary changes to certification documents referred to in changes to certification documents procedure, Conformity Engineer/Senior Conformity engineer will make the final recommendation and transfer the request to the Certification Director who will take the final decision to restore certification, keep suspension, or withdraw certification. Once decision by Certification Director will be done , final decision will be send to Managing Director for final authorization for keep suspension, or withdraw certification.
The conditions for certification reinstatement may include:
- Re-verification of management systems effectiveness through on-site audit.
- Re-testing of the Product
- Discontinuation of misleading stationery and other advertising material.
- Removal of other reasons responsible for suspension of the certificate.
If the client does still not complete the corrective action the further agreed final time, then a further letter will be sent by QTC Conformity Engineer/Senior Conformity engineer detailing the fact that their registration with QTC is withdrawn. Such withdrawal of certification will be published on the web site of QTC to make note of the withdrawal. The status of the client will update on the client file and certified products Directory along with reason for withdraw/suspension. A request that the Client to return the certificate and discontinue the use of the certification mark in any way, as Certificates and marks of compliance remain the property of QTC.
If certification is reinstated after suspension, QTC shall make all necessary modifications to formal certification documents, public information, authorizations for use of marks, etc., in order to ensure all appropriate indications, exist that the product continues to be certified.
If a decision to reduce the scope of certification is made as a condition of reinstatement, QTC shall make all necessary modifications to formal certification documents, public information, authorizations for use of marks, etc., in order to ensure the reduced scope of certification is clearly communicated to the client and clearly specified in certification documentation and public information.
Certificates that are terminated, suspended, reinstated or withdrawn are duly and promptly
reported to proper Authorities (GSO, SASO, etc.)