Selling or hiring out films and games

If you are selling or hiring out film and games, there are five things you must do in order to comply with New Zealand's classification law.

1. Do not sell restricted films or games to underage people

It is an offence to sell a film or game to someone under the age of the restriction on the label. You also commit an offence if you sell a restricted publication to an adult knowing they are going to supply it to an underage person. Find out more about offences and penalties under the Classification Act.

It is the store operator's responsibility to train staff in an appropriate age verification policy. We advise a common sense approach. For example, if a person looks like he or she could be of legal age to buy a film or game, and cannot produce proof of age ID, a verbal verification from a parent or adult guardian accompanying them could be accepted. Decide your store policy on whether or not to accept non-photo IDs, and advise customers if photo ID is required.

2. Display classification information on DVDs and games

Your stock must have official New Zealand classification labels printed or glued onto the slicks. It is against the law to make your own labels. New Zealand classification and rating labels should obscure overseas labels, and if you lend out individual DVDs from a box set, each DVD will need its own label.

Contact the Film and Video Labelling Body for copies of official New Zealand labels.

3. Display a poster that explains the classification symbols at the point-of-sale

Information about what the classification symbols mean must be displayed at the point-of-sale at all times while premises are open to the public. The minimum size requirement for this poster is A3.

The Classification Office can send you the required poster to display (available in A3 and A2 size), free of charge. If you need a poster for your shop, please contact the Information Unit.

4. Follow any display conditions on slicks or posters (or any other advertising material)

DVD, video and game advertising in the form of posters or DVD/game cover slicks are sometimes given specific restrictions called 'display conditions'.

You should be made aware of these conditions or restrictions by your supplier. A typical 'display condition' for a poster or slick would be to limit its display to an age-restricted area of your store (such as an 'over 18 only' area).

5. Do not play restricted films, games or trailers where underage people could view them

You must ensure that no age-restricted films, trailers, or video games are played on screens which can be seen by underage people. You should check beforehand whether a trailer is classified as restricted or is likely to contain restricted content.

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