• Introduction

    Contains definitions of key terms used in the Code e.g. ‘broadcasters’, ‘audience’ etc. Also contains background information on the legal framework for broadcast advertising regulation.

  • 01 Compliance

    Information about pre-clearance. Rules relating to social responsibility and legality. It also spells out that the ASA applies the Code in the spirit, as well as the letter.

  • 02 Recognition of advertising

    Separation rules and content rules to ensure that ads are not mistaken for editorial.

  • 03 Misleading advertising

    A key and extensive section of the Code, containing rules such as substantiation (evidence to prove claims); pricing; the use of the word ‘free’; availability of products, comparisons, testimonials and more.

  • 04 Harm and offence

    Rules to ensure that ads do not cause harm or serious or widespread offence. Includes rules relating to loudness of TV ads; shock tactics, unsafe practices and photosensitive epilepsy.

  • 05 Children

    Rules that must be followed if directing ads at children or featuring them. Includes rules about unsafe practices and unfair pressure; pester power and sales promotions for children.

  • 06 Privacy

    Rules about permissions for depicting – or referring to - living persons in ads, including members of the public and those with a public profile.

  • 07 Political and controversial matters

    Ban on political advertising, including definitions on what is considered political.

  • 08 Distance selling

    Rules governing marketing communications that allow readers to place orders without face-to-face contact with the seller. Covers cancellation and refunds.

  • 09 Environmental claims

    Rules about making ‘green’ claims for products or services. Rules cover evidence, the clarity of claims and ‘life cycle’ of products.

  • 10 Prohibited categories

    Lists products and services that are not permitted to be advertised on TV or radio at all.

  • 11 Medicines, medical devices, treatments and health

    Use of health professionals; rules on evidence (very high level needed for medicinal claims); suitable qualifications for those claiming to treat or offer advice; medicines rules; herbal and homeopathic product rules.

  • 12 Weight control and slimming

    Rules for ads for weight control, slimming foodstuffs and aids, including exercise; diets, clinics and medicines.

  • 13 Food, food supplements and associated health or nutrition claims

    Rules relating to health and nutrition claims in foodstuffs; claims for vitamins and minerals; infant and follow on formula and food and soft drink advertising to children.

  • 14 Financial products, services and investments

    Rules for all financial advertisements, includes provisions on interest rates and, lending and credit.

  • 15 Faith, religion and equivalent systems of belief

    Rules for advertising by, or on behalf of bodies that are wholly or mainly concerned with religion, faith and other belief systems. The rules also apply to ads by anybody for related products and services.

  • 16 Charities

    Includes rules around donation, including refunds.

  • 17 Gambling

    Social responsibility rules for gambling and spread betting. The rules cover content and targeting and are designed to protect under 18s and the vulnerable.

  • 18 Lotteries

    Social responsibility rules that apply to lotteries (including The National Lottery; Gambling Commission licensed lotteries and locally registered lotteries).

  • 19 Alcohol

    Social responsibility rules for alcoholic drinks. The rules are designed to protect under 18s and the wider population.

  • 20 Motoring

    Social responsibility rules for motor vehicles, covering safety, speed and irresponsible or anti-social driving behaviours.

  • 21 Betting tipsters

    Social responsibility rules for gambling and spread betting. The rules cover content and targeting and are designed to protect under 18s and the vulnerable.

  • 22 Premium-rate telephone services

    Rules covering pricing and content of ads that promote premium-rate telephone services.

  • 23 Telecommunications-based sexual entertainment services

    Rules restricting where and when such advertisements can appear.

  • 24 Homeworking schemes

    Rules restricting the nature of advertisements for homeworking schemes and to ensure they do not mislead.

  • 25 Instructional courses

    Rules restricting those who can advertise such courses and ensuring they don’t mislead.

  • 26 Services offering individual advice on consumer or personal problems

    Requirements for suitable credentials for advertising.

  • 27 Introduction and dating services

    Rules to prevent advertisements from causing harm, including to under 18s.

  • 28 Competitions

    Rule about fair and clear administration of competitions.

  • 29 Private investigation agencies

    Requirements for suitable credentials for advertising.

  • 30 Pornography

    Rules restricting the advertisement of R18-rated material.

  • 31 Other categories of radio advertisements that require central copy clearance

    Ads for adult products and services that require central copy clearance, including adult shops, stripograms 18+ media.

  • 33 Electronic cigarettes

    Rules around electronic cigarettes.

  • 32 Scheduling

    Scheduling rules, including those related to children; age-restricted products. Separation / placement rules incl. political and those related to text and interactive advertisements.

  • Appendix 1 Statutory framework for the regulation of broadcast advertising

    A full description of the advertising standards required by statute and the relationship between Ofcom, the ASA and BCAP. Includes information on statutory sanctions and overseas advertising.

  • Appendix 3 The CPRs and BPRs

    This section explains the law on misleading and unfair marketing communications. This law is reflected within the Code and the ASA has regard to the law when considering misleading, aggressive or unfair marketing communications.