Licence-exempt radio use

Published: 13 September 2016
Last updated: 16 March 2023

Ofcom is required to exempt radio stations, equipment or apparatus from the need to hold a wireless telegraphy licence where their use is not likely to involve any undue interference to other legitimate use of radio spectrum.

We do this by making Regulations detailing the particular technical requirements which equipment must meet in order to not require a licence.

As the spectrum is available to anyone using compliant equipment, licence exemption does not provide users with any form of protection from other users. Users should be aware that there may be heavy sharing at certain locations and the ability of equipment to withstand interference may depend on its design, quality and robustness. Ofcom has no powers to regulate the quality of such devices if they comply with the minimum international standards.

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