FAQ33

“The liability can be assumed by the State in accordance with national laws, or by the organization of which the inspection body forms a part”. A.    Does this mean that a governmental inspectin body is deemed to satisfy this requirement by just being a governmental inspection body without having an actual provision (reserves/insurance), or even without a statement of commitment by the state towards the inspection body work, or without a clause in a law specifying rules concerning governmental liability? B. If the inspection body is a part of an organization, can it be assumed that the organization is responsible for inspection body’s liabilities or does there have to be a statement of commitment by the organization and a clear provision (with evidence) to cover the inspection body’s liabilities?

STANDARD: ISO/IEC 17020  ·  CLAUSE: 5.1.4  ·  TOPIC: Provision for liabilities  

Answer:

A.     If an inspection body makes a statement that the state accepts responsibility for its liabilities, for example in the case of a government inspection body, the accreditation body shall seek evidence that this is the case. The evidence must be objective and sufficient to convince the accreditation body that clause 5.1.4 is met.

B.    It cannot be assumed that the liabilities are automatically covered by the larger organisation. There are many ways that an inspection body can be “part of an organization”. For example, it is common for many legal entities to exist in one organization in order to separate the liability of different parts of the organization. In all cases, the inspection body should be able to provide evidence of fulfilment of 5.1.4.