Spicer's Auctioneers Never miss a bargain

The Legal Stuff



Spicer’s Auctioneers Ltd, March 2023.

Terms and Conditions 2023

  1. Definitions in these Conditions
  2. Commission rate for antiques, collectibles, memorabilia, art, jewellery, homewares and automobilia auctions, also known as ‘general auctions.
  3. Selling procedures and the vendor
  4. Bidding procedures and the buyer
  5. Value Added Tax
  6. Title and collection of purchases
  7. Caveat Emptor
  8. Classic Cars, motorcycles, boats, and vintage tractors.
  9. Remedies for non-payment or failure to collect purchases.
  10. Third Party Liability
  11. Commission Bids
  12. Agency
  13. Terms of Sale
  14. Online Auction Technology (Disclaimer). 
  15. Online Bidding Terms and Conditions
  16. Pre-Bidding
  17. Descriptions and Condition
  18. Intangible assets
  19. Computer equipment
  20. Transfer of any database
  21. Forgeries
  22. Artist Resale Rights
  23. Import/Export
  24. Online Bidding
  25. Postage and Packing. Check our latest rates on our website or contact us.
  26. General
  27. Storage
  28. Catalogue practice and terminology for paintings
  29. Force Majeure










Spicer’s Auctioneers Ltd, March 2023.



Terms and Conditions 2023

Spicers Auctioneers carries on business with vendors, bidders, buyers, and all those present in the auction room or online prior to, or in connection with, an auction on the following General Conditions and on such other terms, conditions and notices as may be referred to herein.

Information applicable to the Auction may also be set out in the Online Sales Catalogue and/or in Special Notices on our website, it is your responsibility to review that information.

  1. Definitions in these Conditions:
  • Auction:the auction event at which the Lot shall be offered for sale.
  • Auctioneer: means the firm of Spicers Auctioneers Ltd or its authorised auctioneer, as appropriate.
  • Buyer:the successful bidder in relation to the Lot.
  • Buyer Premium:the commission due to the Auctioneer in accordance with the agreement between the Auctioneer and the Buyer.
  • Consignment/Entry Form:the formal order for Services as provided by the Auctioneer and signed by the Seller.
  • Deliberate forgery: means an imitation made with the intention of deceiving as to authorship, origin, date, age, period, culture, or source but which is unequivocally described in the catalogue as being the work of a particular creator and which at the date of the sale had a value materially less than it would have had if it had been in accordance with the description.
  • Hammer price: means the level of bidding reached (at or above any reserve) when the auctioneer brings down the hammer.
  • Lot:the item to be sold at Auction by the Auctioneer on behalf of the Seller.
  • Reserve:the reserve price set in pounds sterling by the Auctioneer in relation to the Lot.
  • Sale Proceeds:the sum payable to the Auctioneer by the Buyer in consideration of receiving title to the Lot.
  • Seller:the person or firm who engages the Auctioneer to provide the Services.
  • Seller Commission:the commission due to the Auctioneer from the Seller as set out in the Entry Form.
  • Terms of consignment means the stipulated terms and rates of commission on which Spicers Auctioneers and Valuers accepts instructions from vendors or their agents.
  • Total amount due: means the hammer price in respect of the lot sold together with any premium, Value Added Tax (VAT) chargeable and any additional charges payable by a defaulting buyer under these Conditions.
  • "You", "Your", etc. refer to the vendor, buyer, or agent. The singular includes the plural and vice versa as appropriate.







  1. Commission rate for antiques, collectibles, memorabilia, art, jewellery, homewares and automobilia auctions, also known as ‘general auctions.

To Vendors

Spicer’s charge 15% commission on sold lots.

Flat fees: in addition, a charge of 1% loss and damage cover, all SOLD Lots are subject to a minimum fee of £7 and £3 for internet exposure. Minimum lot estimate offered will be no lower than £20.

All charges are plus VAT.

To Buyers

Spicer’s charge 20% plus non-recoverable VAT.

2a.     Commission rate for classic cars, motorcycles, boats, and vintage tractors auctions

To Vendors

Spicer’s charge 5% commission on SOLD vehicle Lots which fall under the ‘classic’ category. No loss and damage cover can be offered on these lots whilst on the premises of Spicer’s Auctioneers.

Please note: - Vendors should keep their own insurance in place and inform their insurer. If necessary, this can be arranged through Spicer’s own insurers, please discuss in advance.

All charges are plus VAT.

To Buyers

Spicer’s charge 15% premium on classic cars, bikes, boats & vintage tractors including VAT.

2b.    Commission rate for automobilia  

Spicer’s charge 15% commission on SOLD lots.

Flat fees: In addition, we charge 1% loss and damage, all SOLD Lots are subject to a minimum fee of £7 and £3 for internet exposure. Minimum lot estimate offered will be no lower than £20.

Automobilia auctions are usually held on the same day as classic vehicles and motorcycles but fall under the ‘general auctions’ category.

Spicer’s charge buyers 20% premium on automobilia plus VAT.

2c   Timed Auctions

Vendors commission and buyer’s premium rates, terms and conditions follow Spicers Auctioneers ‘general auctions’ procedures. If there are exceptions to these rates written notice will be issued in advance of a timed auction going live.





  1. Selling procedures and the vendor

Each Lot is to be consigned in the condition as described on the entry form. The auctioneers or representative of Spicer’s will consign the lot for auction. On appraisal, the most appropriate auction for the lot/s will be determined and the vendor advised.

The vendor may attach an estimate or reserve amount to the Lot/s at any time.

Lots may be entered up to three times with revised estimates. No lot value shall be lower than £20 as an opening bid.

Vendors will be advised when their Lot/s are coming up for auction and advised when the Lot becomes sold or unsold.

Warranty of title and availability

The vendor warrants to the auctioneer and the buyer that the vendor is the true owner of the property consigned or is properly authorised by the true owner to consign it for sale and can transfer good and marketable title to the property free from any third-party claims.

Withdrawn lots: The vendor may by notice to the Auctioneer withdraw the Lot from the Auction. If the vendor does so, they shall be liable to pay the Auctioneer the stated rate of the vendor’s and buyer’s commission calculated on the estimated value of the Lot that the Auctioneer would have received had the Lot been sold for the estimated value. For the purposes of this clause the estimated value shall be the higher of: -

  • the Vendor’s estimate of value as previously notified to the Auctioneer or if more than one figure the highest figure or if none.
  • the value estimated in the catalogue or if more than one figure is given the highest figure, or if none, the Auctioneer’s reasonable estimate of its value.
  • VAT will be added on such fee in either case and expenses.


  1. Bidding procedures and the buyer

Bidders are required to register their name, address, contact number, email and, if online, a registered active payment card, prior to bidding and to satisfy any security arrangements of the auctioneer or their bidding platform partners, before entering the auction to bid.

The highest bid accepted by the auctioneer conducting the sale shall be the buyer at the hammer price and any dispute about a bid shall be settled at the auctioneer's absolute discretion by reoffering the Lot during the auction or otherwise. The auctioneer shall act reasonably in exercising this discretion.

Bidders shall be deemed to act as principals.

Our right to bid on behalf of the vendor is expressly reserved up to the amount of any reserve and the right to refuse any bid is also reserved.

Where the Buyer is represented by an agent, the agent undertakes that if the Buyer does not complete on the purchase of any Lot, the agent will be personally liable to purchase the Lot and to indemnify the Agent and the Vendor against any costs, losses or expenses incurred by the Buyer’s default.

Bidding increments shall be at the auctioneer’s sole discretion.

The buyer will pay the hammer price together with the premium as stated and complete the transaction within three days of the auction ending and collect within five days of the auction ending.

You can use the auctioneers’ margin scheme to account for VAT on a margin which is equal to the value of the services you supply, and not the hammer price of the goods. You can use the scheme if, the goods are eligible and you have checked with the seller before you auction them, you could not claim any VAT back on the goods you have obtained for resale.


On the fall of the hammer, a contract of sale is completed between the vendor and the buyer. Spicer’s Auctioneers is not a party to the contract of sale and shall not be liable for any breach thereof by the buyer or the vendor.

Once you have received confirmation you have bought a Lot you should make payment. Should there be any doubts as to price or buyer, please draw the auctioneer's attention to it immediately.

  • Give to us, if requested, proof of identity, and
  • Pay to us the total amount due.

Any payments made by you to Spicers Auctioneers are paid to the vendor, delay in making payments affects the vendor receiving their owed monies.

If you have outstanding queries on your account, you may be prohibited from bidding.

Sums owing from you to us on any account whatever without regard to any directions of you or your agent, whether express or implied.

How to pay

We can accept cash up to £5000, debit cards and bank transfers (BACS/IBAN). We do NOT ACCEPT credit cards or cheques.

  1. Value Added Tax

Value Added Tax on the hammer price is imposed by law on all items affixed. There are different rules if you provide services to a seller or buyer of second-hand goods, works of arts, antiques, and collector items. You can use the auctioneers’ margin scheme to account for VAT on a margin which is equal to the value of the services you supply, and not the hammer price of the goods.

  1. Title and collection of purchases

The ownership of any Lots purchased shall not pass to you until you have made payment in full to us of the total amount due.

You shall at your own risk and expense take away any lots that you have purchased and paid for not later than five days following the day of the auction after which you shall be responsible for any removal, storage, and insurance charges.

No purchase can be claimed or removed until it has been paid for.



  1. Caveat Emptor

Let the buyer beware. The principle, that it is the buyer's responsibility, not the vendor's, to find out if there is anything wrong with what they are being sold.

All goods are sold untested and without warranty unless specifically noted on the description.

All Lots are sold as seen and the absence of any reference to the condition does not imply the Lot is/are in good condition and without defects, repairs, or restorations. We do not carry out inspections prior to any Sale.

  1. Classic Cars, motorcycles, boats, and vintage tractors.

Vendors: Each Lot is to be consigned in the condition as described on the entry form, together with all keys, documents, history and spare or extra items. Each Lot should be delivered to Spicers Auctioneers at the expense of the vendor within the timeframe agreed with the Auctioneer.

  1. The vendor warrants to the auctioneer and to the buyer, either that they are the true owner of the Lot, or that they are duly authorised to sell the Lot by the true owner. That they are to transfer or procure transfer of good and marketable title to the Lot free from a third-party claims or encumbrances.
  2. The vendor of a Lot which is classed as ‘a road going means of transport’ warrants and undertakes to the Auctioneer that, as at the date of the Sale, either the Lot will be VAT paid in the EU and registered in the UK, will be lawfully usable on the public road, complying with the provisions of current Road Traffic Legislation and all relevant regulations made thereunder and any statutory modifications thereof, and there is or will be in force an MOT Certificate required in relation to such use; or (alternatively) the Vendor has notified the Auctioneer that the Lot does not or will not meet these requirements and cannot legally be used on the road.
  3. The Vendor shall maintain their insurance of the Lot until they are in receipt of the sale proceeds.
  4. If the vendor withdraws the Lot from the auction, the vendor shall arrange for the collection/removal of the Lot at his own expense within five days of withdrawal notice. The vendor ensures the withdrawal fees payable, under Conditions agreed on the entry form, shall have been paid in full and any storage charges have been met by the vendor. Any motor vehicle offered is not sold as a means of transport. Buyers are specifically warned that any vehicle sold as such, may not be roadworthy by law and should ensure suitable removal transport arranged for safety and legal reasons.
  5. The Auctioneer must rely on information provided by the vendor as to the date, condition, and authenticity. The auctioneer does not and cannot undertake its own inspection of any Lot. It is the responsibility of the Buyer to ensure that the Lot conforms to the description in the catalogue.
  6. The Auctioneer cannot check or verify the authenticity of the chassis or VIN number under which a vehicle is offered but relies on information provided by the vendor where available. Buyers should take particular care to verify in advance the authenticity of a vehicle that is claimed to have important racing, rallying or ‘ex-works’ history as it was common in period for a competition vehicle of a single identity to have more than one chassis, body, or other mechanical components. This may have happened several times, both in a vehicle’s ‘works’ career and thereafter in private owner hands. Sometimes ‘works’ vehicles were fitted with different registration plates, so that a vehicle could meet a particular event’s start date deadline. These historical factors may lead to there being in existence multiple and competing claimants to the same vehicle identity.

If the Vendor wishes to retain the registration number of a Lot, it is the vendor’s responsibility to notify the Auctioneer in writing on the Entry Form. It is the vendor’s responsibility to take all necessary steps to ensure that the current registration number is retained, and a new number allocated prior to the Lot being sold. If the Vendor does not do so, the Auctioneer shall not be responsible for any loss or damage whatsoever and howsoever arising out of the Vendor’s loss of the right to the registration number following the sale of the Lot.

Buyers: As a precaution all potential buyers are encouraged to carry out an HPI Check to ensure that the vehicle has not been an insurance write off, does not have any outstanding finance on it and is not stolen for your own piece of mind.

The buyer shall pay the hammer price together with the premium plus VAT within three days of the auction ending and arrange collection of all lots within five days of the auction ending.

  1. Remedies for non-payment or failure to collect purchases.

If any Lot is not paid for in full and taken away in accordance with these Conditions or if there is any other breach of these Conditions, we, as agent for the vendor and on our own behalf, shall at our absolute discretion and without prejudice to any other rights we may have, be entitled to exercise one or more of the following rights and remedies:

  1. To proceed against you for damages for breach of contract.
  2. To advise other auctioneers of noncompliance which may result in a block or ban from participation in auctions who observe the action.
  3. To rescind the sale of that Lot and/or any other Lots sold by us to you.
  4. To resell the Lot (by auction or private treaty) in which case you shall be responsible for any resulting deficiency in the total amount due (after crediting any part payment and adding any resale costs). Any surplus so arising shall belong to the vendor.
  5. To remove, store and insure the Lot at your expense and, in the case of storage, either at our premises or elsewhere.
  6. To charge interest at a rate not exceeding 1.5% per month on the total amount due to the extent it remains unpaid for more than 3 working days after the sale.
  7. To retain that or any other Lot sold to you until you pay the total amount due.
  8. To reject or ignore bids from you or your agent at future auctions or to impose conditions before any such bids shall be accepted.
  9. To apply any proceeds of sale of other Lots due or in future becoming due to you towards the settlement of the total amount due and to exercise a lien (that is a right to retain possession of) any of your property in our possession for any purpose until the debt due is satisfied.
  10. We shall, as agent for the vendor and on our own behalf pursue these rights and remedies only so far as is reasonable to make appropriate recovery in respect of breach of these conditions.


  1. Third Party Liability

The Auctioneer shall be under no liability for any injury, damage or loss sustained by any person while on the Auctioneers premises (including any premises where a sale may be conducted or where a Lot, or a part of a Lot, may be on view from time to time) except for death or personal injury caused by the negligence of the Auctioneers or its employees and agents in the course of their duties to the Auctioneers.

  1. Commission Bids

Whilst prospective buyers are strongly advised to attend the auction and are always responsible for any decision to bid for a particular Lot and shall be assumed to have carefully inspected and satisfied themselves as to its condition we will if so, instructed clearly and in writing execute bids on their behalf. Neither the auctioneer nor our employees or agents shall be responsible for any failure to do so save where such failure is unreasonable. Where two or more commission bids at the same level are recorded, we reserve the right in our absolute discretion to prefer the first bid so made.

  1. Agency

The auctioneer normally acts as agent only and disclaims any responsibility for default by vendors or buyers.

  1. Terms of Sale

The vendor acknowledges that Lots are sold subject to the stipulations of these Conditions in their entirety and on the Terms of Consignment as notified to the consignor at the time of the entry of the Lot.

The Auctioneers’ Margin Scheme allows the Auctioneer to sell items without VAT on the Hammer Price. Under the Auctioneers’ Margin Scheme an amount equivalent to VAT is added to the Buyer’s Premium. This amount cannot be refunded. VAT will not be shown separately on the Buyer’s invoice.

Vendors are entitled to place reserves on any Lot they have consigned. A reserve cannot be higher than the bottom estimate advertised at the time of the Sale and may include a 10% decrease at the Auctioneer’s sole discretion.

  1. Online Auction Technology (Disclaimer)


Under no circumstances shall a bidder have any kind of claim against Spicer’s Auctioneers if the Internet service fails to work correctly before or during the auction. Online bidding is subject to technology faults and issues which are outside the control of the business. Bidder(s) are encouraged to use the “Maximum Bid” feature on the bidding platform and lock in their maximum bid amount if they are concerned about technology failure during the auction. The SELLER and/or Auction Company reserves the right to pause the online auction bidding in the event of any internal or external technology failure, to preserve the integrity of the auction event and maintain a fair and impartial bidding environment.


  1. Online Bidding Terms and Conditions


By indicating your consent during the Bidder or Vendor registration process, you agree to be bound by these Terms and Conditions. When a bid is Accepted a Sale Agreement is made between the Vendor and the Buyer.

  1. Buying: There are no warranties or guarantees given on any Lots in our auctions. Whilst we try to describe all lots as accurately as possible, the description should not be relied upon and you should satisfy yourself before placing a bid, hence all lots are sold as seen and pre-sale viewing is essential. However, if you choose not to take advantage of viewing a lot before bidding then you understand this is at your own risk.
  2. All bids are final: If you place a bid on a lot, then you are agreeing to purchase that lot at hammer price announced plus the buyer’s premium, the online platform fees plus VAT. All lots must be paid for in full within three days of the auction end and collected within five days of the auction end.
  3. Care must be always taken by the bidder whilst the auction is running as all bids are non-retractable. Activating the bid option means you are agreeing to these Terms & Conditions, you agree to pay for any lots that you bid on and collect within the terms, this is legally binding.<