Document No: ASA-SYS-02 Rev 06
These Terms & Conditions have been written to address the requirements of accredited conformity assessment services
Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd provides independent conformity assessment services for the following relevant International Standards:
The basic conditions for acquiring and retaining certification with Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd
are that the applicant company agrees to, and complies with, the following procedures and rules:
As used herein, “Confidential Information” shall mean any oral or written proprietary information that a party may acquire from the other party pursuant to the Contract or information as to the business of the other party provided, however, that Confidential Information shall not include any information which (1) is or hereafter becomes generally known to the public; (2) was available to the receiving party on a non – confidential basis prior to the time of its disclosure by the disclosing party; (3) is disclosed to a party by an independent third party with a right to make such disclosure. Unless required by law or by a judicial, governmental or other regulatory body, neither party nor their agents or subcontractors shall use the Confidential Information other than for the purpose of the Contract nor disclose the other’s Confidential Information to any person or entity without the prior written approval of the other party except as expressly provided for herein.
The company shall inform Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd in writing and without delay of any intended changes relating to the following:
If Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd is prevented from performing or completing any service for which the Contract has been made by reason of any cause whatsoever outside Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd’ control, including, but not limited to, acts of god, war, terrorist activity or industrial action; failure to obtain permits licenses or registrations; illness, death or resignation of personnel or failure by Client to comply with any of its obligations under the Contract, the Client will pay to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd
a) the amount of all abortive expenditures actually made or incurred
b) proportion of the agreed fees equal to the proportion (if any) of the service actually carried out; and Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd shall be relieved of all responsibility whatsoever for the partial or total non – performance of the required Services.
Fees are detailed in the quotation submitted to the applicant. All costs are based on the charge rate applicable at the time of quotation and Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd reserve the right to increase charges during the certification period. Such increases will be notified to the client company in writing. Once an application for certification is made, payment of the initial registration fees is required, payment of ongoing registration fees is due as per the payment schedule within the quotation. Additional fees will be charged for additional work not included in the scope of the original quotation and for any extra, unscheduled visits required due to non – compliances being identified in the continuing adequacy and/or implementation of the relevant management system.
Unless otherwise stated, fees quoted include travel and expenses associated with the audit/surveillance activities. Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd reserves the right to charge late payment charges. All fees are subject to local taxes in the country concerned at the appropriate rates.
Audit Conformity assessment audits are based on sampling within a Management System and
are therefore not a guarantee of 100% conformity with standard requirements. The initial audit of an applicant company’s management system shall be carried out over two stages:
The applicant company shall ensure that Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd is advised of the name of the Management Representative who has authority and responsibility for maintaining the Management System. This individual shall be required to maintain contact with Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd. Any change to this designated person must be confirmed to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd in writing.
When the responsible decision makers of Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd are confident that the company meets all the requirements for certification following a thorough review of the audit report(s) and associated objective evidence, the applicant shall be entered on the Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd certification directory and a registration number and certificate issued.
Certificates issued will remain the property Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd and shall be returned to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd upon request.
Periodic surveillance visits shall be carried out to confirm that the certified management system has continued to fulfil requirements between recertification audits; ensure internal audits and management review have been performed to programme; review actions taken on nonconformities identified during the previous audit; evaluate treatment of complaints; evaluate the continued effectiveness of the management system with regard to achieving objectives; evaluate the management system and performance as regards legal compliance; review progress of planned activities aimed at continual improvement; ensure continuing operational control and review of any changes since the last visit.
The certificate holder shall allow Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd the right of access for surveillance purposes and Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd shall reserve the right to make unannounced visits as required. The certificate holder will be informed of the results of all surveillances.
First surveillance visits shall be conducted no later than 12 months after the certificate issue date; and at least once per calendar year thereafter.
Regardless of the frequency of the Surveillance routine, a certification cycles runs for a three-year period from the date of the certificate decision with a full re-audit to be completed within 3 years of the last date of the stage 2 audit, and every 3 years thereafter. Failure to submit for re-audit prior to the expiry date will result in a period during which the company’s registration will deem to have expired. Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd client companies will be subject to re-audit prior to the expiry of the certificate. 6 months prior to the expiry date a new quotation will be submitted covering the new three-year cycle.
Typically, the man-day allocations for a three-year re-audit will be approximately the same as the initial stage 2 audit.
Extending the scope of registration, to cover new products/processes/locations requires registered companies to complete and return a new application for quotation. This will allow Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd to determine whether additional audit time is required to cover the changes required.
The application procedure outlined in clause 5 of these Terms & Conditions will be followed and an audit will be carried out on the areas not previously covered.
Reductions to a scope of registration, it is mandatory that Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd is advised immediately of changes in organisation or products i.e., closure of sites or removal of product previously supplied under original scope on certificate. Upon review and acceptance of the information, Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd will determine the actions needed to process the scope reduction and will notify if an additional audit, and a change the worded scope, is required. The cost of this reduction in scope of the certificate will be based on the nature and programming of the audit if required or administration costs for a new certificate.
In both cases an amended certificate detailing those aspects of the company activities covered by the extension, will be issued following a successful audit (where applicable) to replace the original certificate issued to the company.
Registered management system must continue to comply with the current version of specific standard and any changes to the system must also continue to comply. Also, the scope of registration must continue to be appropriate to the auditee organization’s objectives and appropriate for the auditee organization’s products and services. On the other hand, complaints, appeals, request for change in scope, additional accreditation, audit visits, or surveillance visits may disclose reasons for undertaking an additional visit.
If there are grounds for undertaking a special purpose visit, certification director determines what level of review will be required to maintain or extend registration, including but not limited to normal surveillance, unplanned surveillance, partial re-audit, or full re-audit. Before undertaking any visit, which is not under any contractual agreement, the auditee organization must agree in writing to the new terms.
The scope of the audit shall be pre-determined and shall depend on the reason for the visit. In case of any complaint / appeal / any information resulting in doubt on the effectiveness of system, the audit of concerned and other related activity may be carried out.
Visit / audit report shall be recorded similar to initial audit. The report shall also be reviewed for risk to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd. Certification committee may also discuss the findings with the audit team.
A certified company has the right to publicise the fact that the management system which it utilises has been certified, and can apply the relevant marks to stationery and promotional material relating to the scope of certification as detailed on the certificate.
Certification marks must not be applied to products or primary packaging, or displayed in any way that is ambiguous as to the scope of the certification
Any statement about certification made on product packaging shall in no way imply that the product itself is certified by Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd and shall include the brand name of the certified client, the type of management system and standard and the name of Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd.
In every case the registered company shall ensure that no confusion arises between certified and non-certified products/processes and activities in its publications and advertising. The company shall not make any claim that could mislead purchasers to believe that a product/process or activity is covered by certification when, in fact, it is not.
Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd take all reasonable precautions to control the use of the certificates issued. Incorrect references to the scope of certificates or incorrect use of the certificate shall be dealt with by suitable actions, which could include suspension or withdrawal of certificates, legal action and/or publication of the transgression.
A certificate may be suspended for a limited time in cases of:
If suspended, the company shall immediately cease to identify the coverage of any certificate under suspension. Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd shall notify in writing an official suspension of certificate to the company, this notification will indicate the conditions that will allow removal of the suspension and
certification logos must be withdrawn from use immediately and any continued use of marks on company publicity and stationery material will be in contravention of the intellectual property rights of the owners of the marks
At the end of the suspension period, or earlier if suitable responses have been submitted by the suspended client, an investigation will be undertaken to determine whether the required conditions for removal of suspension have been followed. If the conditions have been satisfied the certificate will be re-instated, if the conditions have not been satisfied the certificate shall be withdrawn.
The suspended company shall be liable for any reasonable costs associated with suspension and subsequent re-instatement of the certificate and these will be charged to the registered company.
A certificate may only be withdrawn if the company does not meet required conditions raised on suspension of certificate
Intention to withdraw a certificate will be notified to the company in writing 7 days before the proposed withdrawal date and the company does have the right of appeal against this decision. Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd is not liable to reimburse any audit fees paid and Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd will publish the withdrawal of the certificate. Reinstatement of ‘withdrawn’ certificates may require a full initial audit to be conducted and where appropriate, fees to be paid in advance.
Withdrawal of the certificate will require that all promotional materials endorsed with the Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd certification logos must be withdrawn from use immediately and any continued use of marks on company publicity and stationery material will be in contravention of the intellectual property rights of the owners of the marks.
A certificate may be cancelled if:
Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd is not liable to reimburse any audit fees paid and Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd will publish notification of the cancellation of the certificate. Cancellation of the certificate will require that all promotional materials endorsed with the Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd certification logos must be withdrawn from use immediately and any continued use of marks on company publicity and stationery material will be in contravention of the intellectual property rights of the owners of the marks.
In the event of certificate withdrawal or if a client company does not accept a non-conformity or non- recommendation for registration, the company has the right of appeal
Should the company intend to appeal then they should refer to the Complaint & Appeal Handling procedure of Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd.
The appellant must submit a formal documented substantiation for the appeal to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd within fourteen days of the receipt of the intention of withdrawal notice or the date of the audit.
All client company appeals will be reviewed by the appeals committee.
The appellant will be advised of the names of the appeals committee and the appellant has the right to dispute the members of the appeals committee by formal notification of their dispute. This dispute will be reviewed by the chairman of the committee. The result of the appeals committee review will be notified to the company.
The decision of the appeals committee is final and shall be binding on both parties. Once the decision on the appeal has been made no counter claim by either party can be made to amend or change the decision.
In instances where the appeal has been successful, and the certificate is re-instated or the non-conformity is removed, no claim can be made against Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd for reimbursement of costs or any other losses incurred because of the initial withdrawal or identified non-conformity.
Submission, investigation and decision on appeals shall not result in any discriminatory actions against the appellant
Should a client company have any reason to complain regarding the conduct of Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd employees, then the complaint should be made in writing to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd.
Complainants will receive an acknowledgment of receipt immediately and the complaint will be investigated and decided upon within a maximum of 30 days from initial receipt. Should Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd receive a complaint by a user of a registered client, indicating that a certified client no longer complies with Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd requirements, then it may be necessary to either initiate withdrawal of certification, or conduct a full re audit of the client, at extra cost to the client.
All certified clients shall make available, when requested, records of all complaints and corrective actions taken, in accordance with the management system standards or other normative documents.
Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd maintains a directory of all certified companies, including the name, relevant normative document, scope and geographical location (e.g., city and country) for each certified client (or the geographic location of the headquarters and any sites within the scope of a multi-site certification). This is published and made available upon request to both certified and non-certified companies and members of the public.
Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd clients shall, where an accreditation body so nominates a need to, accept the presence of officers of the Accreditation Body attending an audit to be conducted by Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd.
Attendance by accreditation officers shall in no way affect the certification decision making process of the Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd.’s Lead Auditor.
Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd undertakes to exercise due care and skill in the performance of the Services and accepts responsibility only in cases of proven negligence. Nothing in these General Conditions shall exclude or limit Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd’ liability to the Client for death or personal injury or for fraud or any other matter resulting from Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd’ negligence for which it would be illegal to exclude or limit its liability. The total liability of Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd to the Client in respect of any claim for loss, damage or expense of any nature and howsoever arising shall be limited, in respect of any one event or series of connected events, to an amount equal to the fees paid to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd under the Contract (excluding Value Added Tax thereon). Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd shall have no liability to the Client for claim for loss, damage or expense unless arbitral proceedings are commenced within one year after the date of the performance by Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd of the service which gives rise to the claim or in the event of any alleged non-performance within one year of the date when such service should have been completed. Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd shall not be liable to the Client nor to any third party
a) for any loss, damage or expense arising from (i) a failure by Client to comply with any of its obligations herein (ii) any actions taken or not taken on the basis of the Reports or the Certificates; and (iii) any incorrect results, Reports or Certificates arising from unclear, erroneous, incomplete, misleading or false information provided to Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd.
b) for loss of profits, loss of production, loss of business or costs incurred from business interruption, loss of revenue, loss of opportunity, loss of contracts, loss of expectation, loss of use, loss of goodwill or damage to reputation, loss of anticipated savings, cost or expenses incurred in relation to making product recall, cost or expenses incurred in mitigating loss and loss or damage arising from the claims of any third party (including without limitation product liability claims) that may be suffered by the Client; and
c) any indirect or consequential loss or damage of any kind (whether or not falling within the types of loss or damage identified in (b) above).Except for cases of proven negligence or fraud by Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd, the Client further agrees to hold harmless and indemnify Advanced System Assurance Pte Ltd and its officers, employees, agents or subcontractors against all claims (actual or threatened) by any third party for loss, damage or expense of whatsoever nature including all legal expenses and related costs and howsoever arising (i) relating to the performance, purported performance or non- performance, of the Services or (ii) out of or in connection with the Client’s product, process or service the subject of the certification (including, without limitation, product liability claims).Each party shall take out adequate insurance to cover its liabilities under the Contract.