High Value and Luxury Assets

Buying and Selling: Antiques

Request a callback

Please enter these characters in the box

captcha

High Value and Luxury Assets >> Buying and Selling: Antiques

Beautiful objects have always captured peoples’ imagination.  Acquiring or selling an antique piece of furniture or a rare, valuable collectable may seem simple, but there are some legal matters both a buyer and seller need to be aware of.

At Saracens Solicitors, we are experts in the law surrounding the sale and purchase of antiques and collectables.  From defining whether or not an item falls under the definition of ‘treasure’ to establishing ownership, to the laws surrounding the auction process, we can advise you in a clear, competent manner, allowing you to indulge in your new purchase, or enjoy the proceeds from your sale.

Places to Buy and Sell Antiques

There are a number of ways to buy and purchase antiques in the United Kingdom including:

  • Auction
  • Private sale
  • Selling or purchasing from an antiques dealer
  • Buying or selling through a dealer (who receives commission)
  • Antique fairs

If you are purchasing an antique from an auction remember the golden rule of Caveat Emptor or Let the Buyer Beware.Ensure you or your representative have a chance to inspect the antique thoroughly, to ensure there are no defects.

The Definition of Treasure

The Treasure Act 1996 defines treasure or ‘treasure trove’ as:

  • All coins from the same hoard. A hoard is defined as two or more coins, as long as they are at least 300 years old when found. If they contain less than 10% gold or silver there must be a minimum of 10 coins in the hoard for it to qualify.
  • Two or more prehistoric base metal objects in association with one another
  • Any individual (non-coin) find that is at least 300 years old and contains at least 10% gold or silver.
  • Any object of any material found in the same place as (or which had previously been together with) another object which is deemed treasure (this is known as ‘associated finds’).
  • Objects substantially made from gold or silver but are less than 300 years old, that have been deliberately hidden with the intention of recovery and whose owners or heirs are unknown.

There is a legal obligation for finders of treasure to notify the local coroner within 14 days.  Before you make any attempt to sell an item that may be considered treasure you need to obtain legal advice as to who is entitled to claim legal ownership of the item or items.

Our solicitors are fully versed in the complexities surrounding the law of ownership of treasure and other antiques.  We will also advise you on any VAT issues which may arise from your purchase.

To talk to us further about acquiring or selling antiques please phone our London office on 020 3588 3500
or request a call back and we will be in touch as soon as possible.

Saracens Blog
STUCK BETWEEN A YACHT AND A HARD PLACE? Buying A Yacht

STUCK BETWEEN A YACHT AND A HARD PLACE? Navigating the risks of buying a yacht Cruising around the South of France for weeks basking in the glorious Mediterranean sunshine, sailing past Cannes and Monte Carlo in a beautiful yacht nestled on the azure waters while the gentle waves rock you slowly into a deep sleep.  Sounds like a dream but taking it beyond the realms of your imagination is easier than you think. Saracens offers straightforward advice on what to do when buying a yacht.

Read more
Introductory Guide to Shareholders’ Agreements

What is a Shareholders’ Agreement? We often have clients who tell us that they have started a new business and have been advised by friends / colleagues to enter into a shareholders’ agreement. We are frequently asked why a shareholders’ agreement is needed and the matters covered by the agreement. To put it simply, a shareholders’ agreement is a private contract that can be entered into by some or all of the shareholders of a company to regulate the affairs between them. It gives rise to contractual obligations between the parties and the usual contractual remedies are available in the event of breach. The structure and provisions within a shareholders’ […]

Read more
Your Step By Step Guide To Selling A Yacht Selling A Yacht

Selling a yacht may seem like a daunting prospect…. Setting a price, marketing, advertising, broker terms and commission, contractual issues…etc all very complex and generally quite time consuming. Because we understand this sector better than most, to help you understand some of the basics, we have put together this easy to follow step by step free boat sellers guide to highlight some of the issues you need to weary of. Step 1 –Engage the Right Professionals When selling a yacht it is imperative that you enlist the right professionals to manage the transaction, including a lawyer who has experience dealing with this type of work. This applies to the purchaser […]

Read more