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In the regulatory landscape of product certification, particularly within the European Union (EU), the concept of a Notified Body plays a pivotal role. Acting as an independent entity, a Notified Body is responsible for assessing the conformity of certain products before they can be marketed within the EU. A Notified Body is an organization designated by an EU member state to assess the conformity of products to specific EU directives and regulations before they are released to the market. These bodies are so-called because the EU member state that designates them notifies the European Commission and other member states of their capabilities to perform this task. Notified Bodies are involved in the certification process for a wide range of products, from medical devices and construction materials to personal protective equipment and machinery.

What is the Importance of Notified Bodies?

Notified Bodies (NBs) serve as a critical checkpoint in ensuring that products meet high safety, health, and environmental protection requirements. By doing so, Notified Bodies help maintain a high level of product safety within the EU market, protect consumers, and facilitate the free movement of compliant products across EU borders. Furthermore, their role supports manufacturers in navigating the complex regulatory landscape, helping them achieve compliance and access the EU market.

What are the Roles and Functions of Notified Bodies?

The roles and functions of a Notified Body vary depending on the regulatory affairs requirements of the specific product category. However, some of the core responsibilities include:

IConformity Assessment: This is the primary function of a Notified Body. It involves evaluating whether a product meets the specific requirements of the applicable EU directives or regulations. This process can include examining the technical design, manufacturing process, and sometimes the inspection of the final product.

Certification: Upon successful assessment, a Notified Body issues a certificate of conformity. This certificate is evidence that the product has been assessed by an independent third party and meets the necessary EU requirements.

Ongoing Surveillance: Notified Bodies also have a role in the ongoing surveillance of products and manufacturers. This may involve periodic audits of the manufacturing process and re-evaluation of products to ensure continued compliance with EU standards.

Technical Documentation Review: Notified Bodies review and evaluate the technical documentation prepared by manufacturers. This documentation details the design, manufacture, and operation of the product and demonstrates its compliance with the relevant regulations.

Advisory Services: While their primary role is conformity assessment, Notified Bodies can also provide advisory services to manufacturers. They can offer guidance on the regulatory requirements for product certification and the conformity assessment process.


Notified Bodies play a crucial role in the European regulatory system, ensuring that products meet essential health, safety, and environmental requirements before being placed on the market. Through their comprehensive assessment and certification processes, they contribute to the protection of consumers and the facilitation of trade within the EU. Their work supports manufacturers in achieving compliance with regulatory standards, ultimately promoting innovation and competition within the EU market.

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