The German version of the expertizing rules is legally binding.

Download the expertizing order as a PDF

1. General

Philatelic.Experts JLHSN GmbH (hereinafter referred to as “P.E”) is available as a philatelic expert group for the performance of philatelic examinations. Its activities serve to determine the authenticity and condition of stamps, postmarks or other philatelic items and to detect forgeries and manipulations of such items.

For all examinations and expert opinions, it is guided by the philatelic definitions of the Bund der philatelistischen Prüfer (BPP), the current version of which is published on the Internet at and and

2. Items to be expertized

The subject of the examinations are exclusively high-quality stamps, multiples, and entires of all collecting areas, in particular their classic issues. Including the authenticity of the stamps and cancellations, the quality of the specimens (the correct use of the whole items (routes, transit stamps, etc.)) and the proof of their provenance.

It is in the nature of things that examinations which require extensive philatelic research before a possible statement can be made cannot be carried out by P.E.

Philatelic items from all areas that are currently being examined by an expertizer of the BPP e.V. are excluded. The current list of examiners can be found at

In addition to post-historical covers, war and insurrection covers, transit mail, and unstamped covers are also excluded. Likewise, color determinations, unless they can be made on the basis of plate assignments, as well as inquiries about printing deviations/plate errors/plate conditions.

Also excluded are stamps and covers of some countries that are either not yet sufficiently researched or for which relevant catalogs/manuals are missing (for example Indian feudal states).

Countries with characters other than Latin – for example Asian countries such as Japan, Korea, or China – can only be processed depending on the respective item.

All specimens are examined on the basis of the internationally recognized catalogs for these areas (Facit, MICHEL, Scott, Stanley Gibbons, Yvert etc.) as well as the relevant handbooks for these areas.

3. Legal nature of the business relationships

3.1 The legal relationship between P.E and its client shall be governed by these Inspection Regulations. In addition to these Inspection Regulations, the provisions of the German Civil Code (BGB) on the provision of services for consideration (Section 675 BGB) and the law on contracts for work and services (Section 631 et seq. BGB) shall apply, unless the nature of the examination precludes the application of individual provisions.

3.2 Prior to the conclusion of the first examination for a client, the client shall confirm in writing that it agrees to the validity of the expertizing regulations. The initial declaration of consent must extend to the fact that the expertizing Regulations shall also apply to all future expertizing contracts between P.E and the client until revoked in writing. If the declaration is refused in whole or in part, P.E shall reject the inspection order.

3.3 When placing the order, the client also confirms its consent to the publication of images of the expertizing object and the expertizing result in the event that a (counterfeit) falsification of the expertizing object is detected. If the declaration is refused in whole or in part, P.E shall reject expertizing.

4. Tasks and duties of the P.E

4.1 The task of the P.E. is to prepare a written expert opinion (certificate). The result of the assessment may also be the determination by the P.E. that an expertizing certificate for the expertizing object as a whole or in parts cannot be issued with sufficient certainty. The expert opinion must be drawn up impartially and to the best of the P.E.’s knowledge and belief. A specific expertizing result desired by the client is not owed.

4.2 P.E may reject the expertizing order in whole or in part after reviewing the content and scope of the order without stating reasons. In this case, it is obliged to inform the client of the rejection without delay.

4.3 Upon acceptance of the expertizing order, P.E shall inform the client of the approximate processing time. If this cannot be met at a later date, P.E shall inform the client of this fact in good time. Reminders from the client justifying default must be made in writing.

4.4 The appraisals are carried out personally and jointly by the partners of P.E, who are also philatelic experts (so-called “commission expertizing”). Insofar as it is necessary and expedient and the personal responsibility of the experts is maintained, P.E may make use of the assistance of expert third parties during the examination.

5. Scope of the expertization

5.1 The examination shall extend to the authenticity of the item to be examined in all parts (e.g. separation types, gum, overprint, cancellation) and to its condition/quality (any defects, repairs, embellishments and other changes). P.E.’s activities may include the classification of the item to be inspected according to the type of printing, type, watermark, type of separation, color, perforation, and paper, insofar as these are listed in the catalogs and/or manuals relevant to the inspection area. Differences in color tones, on the other hand, are only determined in exceptional cases, as the assignment of a expertizing item to a specific color designation in the catalog is always subject to subjective assessments. In those cases where an assignment is made, P.E will generally determine the color visually. The use of complex or particularly cost-intensive procedures, such as spectral analysis, spectrophotometry, fluorescence microscopy, or chemical methods, is not required for the purpose of color assignment.

5.2 Further determinations, such as plate errors, uncataloged subspecies and varieties, field characteristics, as well as evaluations, are not the task of the P.E.

5.3 P.E. shall be entitled to carry out the necessary and customary examinations to achieve the purpose of the examination, in particular to place loose stamps in cold or warm water or insensitive items in a petrol bath. P.E shall not be obliged to remove the stamps from whole items or letters.

6. Genuine Items

6.1 If P.E establishes the authenticity of an expertizing item, an expert opinion shall be issued for this expertizing item.

6.1 The certificate – each with a color illustration of the expertizing object – is issued to the client (Section 10.5.). The certificate contains a number of security features. As a rule, the expert opinion is written in German, but can also be written in English at the special request of the client.

6.2 The expert opinion contains a confirmation of authenticity as well as the necessary description of the object under examination and its condition/quality and – if available – a list of the main provenances.

6.3 The expertizing object is not additionally signed by means of a metal stamp (e.g. with a name).

7. Expertization without clear result

7.1 If P.E cannot confirm with certainty the authenticity of the expertizing item or the existence of a forgery or falsification, even after applying all reasonable expertizing methods and taking into account the relevant state of philatelic research, it may return the expertizing item with the remark that a clear expertizing result cannot be determined.

8. Fake or altered items

8.1 If the P.E. establishes that an expertizing item has been forged or falsified, an expert opinion will also be drawn up for this expertizing item.

8.2 In addition to the preparation of an expert opinion, the item in question will be made available in the P.E. archive at with an illustration, the corresponding expertizing result and, if applicable, further illustrations/explanations.

The client hereby expressly agrees to this (see 2.3)

8.3 An additional marking of the expertizing item by means of a metal stamp (such as “imprint incorrect,” “invalidation incorrect” or similar) does not take place.

9. Processing of the philatelic material, obligations of the client

9.1 The expertizing items must be presented in clean condition, i.e. free of paper and folds, on a black card and with a list or copy of the expertizing items submitted.

9.2 The client is obliged to draw P.E’s attention to all circumstances known to him which could lead to an incorrect assessment. In particular, P.E must be informed of already known expertizing results, results of preliminary expertizings, defects, repairs, reperforations or re-gumming on the expertizing item upon presentation and existing expert opinions/expertizing certificates must be submitted. The client is also obliged to inform P.E. if he has further identical specimens of the item to be expertizied from a divided or undivided multiples, such as a stamp sheet or partial sheet. As a result of the culpable breach of the obligations incumbent on the client towards P.E, the client shall be obliged to compensate P.E for the resulting damage. Furthermore, the client is obliged to inform P.E immediately of any errors or defects in the expert opinion in order to give P.E the opportunity to correct the expert opinion if necessary.

9.3 The risk for the shipment of the expertizing object to and from P.E. shall be borne by the client. The client shall choose a form of dispatch that ensures receipt of the expertizing item against signature by P.E or its authorized recipient. On the other hand, a form of dispatch in which the postal service provider certifies the posting in a letterbox or the handover to the inspector by its delivery agent does not provide proof or evidence of receipt, even if a corresponding proof of delivery can be retrieved from the postal service provider (no reversal of the burden of proof). It is up to the client to ensure secure delivery and/or to insure the expertizing consignment on the outward and return journey.

9.4 P.E shall bear the risk for the shipment of the expertizing object between the experts of P.E (shipment shall be made by FedEx or DHL Express). The client expressly agrees to the shipment between the experts.

10. Liability of P.E. and scope of liability

10.1 P.E. shall be liable in accordance with these inspection regulations and the statutory provisions for a professional inspection that corresponds to the state of philatelic knowledge and experience at the time of the inspection.

10.2 P.E. shall also be liable to the client for simple negligence with regard to the determination of the facts on which its examination is based and the respective state of philatelic knowledge. P.E will classify an expertizing item to a specific color designation in the catalog to the best of its knowledge and belief, if it does so at all. The classification in transitional and borderline areas of color designations (see section 4.2 of the expertizing regulations) does not justify any liability on the part of P.E, especially as this is subject to subjective criteria. In the event of simple negligence, the expertizer shall not be liable for the breach of insignificant contractual obligations. The above limitation of liability shall apply to claims on any legal grounds asserted against P.E. by the client or by third parties on the basis of the expertizing order. If the client or third party suffers damage and P.E is liable to the client or third party for simple negligence, its liability shall be limited to the value of the expertizing item at the time of the expertizing if it was wrongly judged to be incorrect or in poor condition. If the expertizing object was wrongly assessed as genuine or in good condition, P.E’s liability shall be limited to the value that a genuine or well-preserved expertizing sample corresponding to the expertizing object had at the time of the expertizing. Lost profits, including increases in value occurring after the inspection has been carried out, shall not be reimbursed. If the requirements of § 310 para. 1 BGB are met, the above limitation of liability shall also apply in the event of gross negligence on the part of P.E or its vicarious agents. Insofar as P.E is liable to a third party in such a case, this liability shall not apply to the third party to whom the warranty was excluded or limited in the chain of sale between the client and the third party or between third parties among themselves unless he had the warranty claims assigned to him.

10.3 The limitations of liability listed in clause 9.2. shall not apply in the event of injury to life, limb, or health of the client attributable to P.E..

10.4 Insofar as P.E is liable to third parties under the expertizing contract, the claims asserted against it shall not extend beyond the claims to which the client itself is entitled. The limitations of liability set out in the expertizing regulations shall also apply to the third party.

10.5 If P.E comes to the conclusion after completion of its inspection that the initially determined result of its inspection is incorrect, the client is obliged to enable P.E to make a correction by presenting the object of the inspection or the expert opinion at P.E’s registered office. The same applies in the event of a claim for damages. This obligation does not apply if the client is neither the owner nor the holder of the expertizing object. The original expertizing result must remain recognizable.

10.6 If the prerequisites for the payment of damages by P.E. are met, P.E. may, at its discretion, either supply an equivalent replacement item or compensate the damage incurred in cash.

10.8 The client is obliged to do everything possible to minimize the occurrence and amount of the damage (§ 254 BGB). In the event of a claim by a third party, the client must notify P.E. immediately.

11. Entitlement of P.E. to Remuneration

11.1 P.E. charges a fee for its activities, including new or subsequent expertizations.

11.2 Unless otherwise agreed, the remuneration shall amount to up to 10% of the respective commercial value, which can be determined either on the basis of a current auction price or a current purchase contract. If such a value cannot be determined, P.E may estimate the commercial value at its reasonable discretion. The parties may also mutually determine the inspection fee on the basis of an individual agreement prior to the conclusion of the inspection activity. As a rule, the minimum remuneration for each inspection consignment is € 150.00.

11.3 The remuneration for expertizing items determined to be false or falsified shall be up to 2.5% of the commercial value in relation to a genuine, similar expertizing item. If such a value cannot be determined, P.E may estimate the commercial value at its reasonable discretion. The amount of the minimum remuneration for each expertizing consignment and each individual expertizing item pursuant to Section 10.2. shall remain unchanged.

If it is not possible to determine a clear expertizing result for an expertizing object, only the minimum remuneration in accordance with Section 10.2. may be taken into account, unless P.E claims higher expenses.

11.4 For particularly time-consuming and difficult expertizings, P.E. may demand a surcharge to be agreed in writing in advance. This also applies to the classification of expertizing items according to print type, type, watermark, separation type, color, perforation, and paper.

11.5 Payment is due upon receipt of the inspection invoice by the client. It can be collected by advance payment.

11.6 In addition to the remuneration, P.E shall charge its shipping, insurance, and packaging costs as well as the statutory value-added tax.

11.7 P.E may demand an advance payment in the amount of the expected remuneration, including shipping costs. If the remuneration is not paid in advance or is not collected by advance payment, P.E may retain the expertizing items until payment of its invoice.

11.8 The client may only offset against P.E’s claims for payment of the remuneration if his asserted counterclaim is undisputed or has been legally established.

12. Statute of Limitations

In the event of simple negligence on the part of P.E or its vicarious agents, claims by the client for defective performance of the contract and claims for damages against P.E, irrespective of the legal grounds, shall become time-barred after one year at the expertizing, unless a shorter limitation period results from the statutory provisions. The commencement of the limitation period shall be governed by the statutory provisions.

The above limitation of the limitation period shall not apply in the event of injury to life, limb, or health of the client attributable to P.E..

13. Place of Fulfillment and Jurisdiction

13.1 The place of performance and jurisdiction is Wiesbaden.

13.2 The law of the Federal Republic of Germany shall apply to the legal relationship between P.E and its client.

14. Final Provisions

Should individual provisions of these expertizing regulations be or become invalid, this shall not affect the validity of the remaining provisions.

These inspection regulations shall enter into force on December 1st, 2023, upon their publication on the Internet.