Autograph Fair Trade Association Ltd
The Autograph Fair Trade Association Ltd (AFTAL) is a trade association for autograph and signed memorabilia dealers.
The organization was formed by a group of recognized dealers with the intention of stamping out the market in fake items and ensuring that the customer is able to find dealers that they can trust.
Dealers belonging to AFTAL are committed to providing authentic items with an excellent level of professional competence, qualification and diligence.
By becoming a member all dealers submit to the AFTAL code of ethics, and can be suspended or removed from the organization if their practices are in violation of any part of it.
Code of ethics
“As an AFTAL approved dealer, the member agrees to the following:
- To ensure that every item that may be offered for sale, is legally obtained, thoroughly checked, accurately described, and correctly presented, and that any member shall never knowingly offer for sale or exchange any item which is either fake, forged, printed or non authentic in any way, unless that item is so described.
- To always conduct their business to the highest standards, with honesty and integrity, never resorting to unfair trade that might reflect on their company, the industry, or AFTAL, and to always deal with customers in a polite and fair manner.
- To support and work with AFTAL, the Police, Trading Standards and others, and to help find and ensure prosecution of those involved in the creation and sale of non-authentic material as and when requested to do so.
- To avoid misrepresentation of any products and/or services, make false promises, use any misleading advertising or promote their company in any way that might lead to misconception on the part of the customer.
- To continually improve their expertise and skills within their field of work, and to do everything possible to enhance the reputation of AFTAL and its members, as skilled professionals offering honest, authentic and competent services to all customers.
To ensure that their customers are aware that they offer a full 100% refund in cash, cheque or as requested by the customer, on any item that may be returned as non authentic for its entire life, and that refunds shall be made upon the return of the item, with the original COA/invoice together with any and all appropriate paperwork that may prove the item to be non authentic.
To agree to abide by any and all rules, regulations, conditions or demands that AFTAL may inform them of at any time from this day forward."
AFTAL sponsors an official authentication course for members, which offers a basic grounding in identifying real and fake signatures, valuations and appraisals. It also covers civil and criminal law appertaining to autographs, and other subjects including:
- How to spot Autopen signatures
- Tell tale signs of forgery
- Mounting and framing, the do’s and don’ts
- Copyright and violation