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Use of IEC standards in CE certification

When reviewing certificates or test reports, you may notice references to IEC standards. In order to benefit from the presumption of conformity, shall the EN standard be used instead of the IEC standard? Was the test lab/certification body incorrect to use the IEC-version of the standard? Can IEC standards be used for CE certification?

The short answer is: it depends.

First, it is important to note that the IEC version and the EN version may differ (even ever so slightly). The European Commission typically refers to the EN version of the standard. That means that the EN version only leads to the ‘presumption of conformity’.¬†However, the European Commission sometimes does include a reference to the IEC version in the list of harmonized standards. In that case, the IEC version is considered to be acceptable for the presumption of conformity.

If the test report or certificate does refer to an IEC standard only (without referencing (also the EN version), check that the version of the IEC standard is of the same year as the EN version. If not, and you want to be absolutely certain the relevant requirements and procedures in the IEC standard are exactly the same as in the EN version, compare the content of both.

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