IBSCC Rules

IBSCC RULES

I. GENERAL

1. The International Bureau for the Suppression of Counterfeit Coins (in short: IBSCC) was established by the IAPN to fight against forgeries in every field of numismatics and against their dispersal into the numismatic market according to points 27 and 28 of the IAPN Internal Rules. It is controlled and ruled by the Anti Forgery Committee of the IAPN (hereafter called “the AFC”

2. The IBSCC collects all kinds of information about any forgeries, their sources, their ways to reach the market or how to identify them as such and makes such information available to the IAPN membership. Such information, or part of it, might also be made available to other parties (museums, academic authorities, dealers who are not members of the IAPN, or any other interested party), but only if authorised to do so by a decision of the AFC.

3. The composition of the IBSCC is decided by the AFC which appoints its members, its secretary and its President. As per the IAPN Statutes and Internal Rules, all decisions made by the AFC are subject to approval by the Executive Committee of the IAPN and to ratification by the General Assembly of the IAPN.

4. The IBSCC gives opinions on the authenticity of coins submitted to it by dealers, whether members of the IAPN or not, or private collectors for a fee which is defined by the AFC.

5. The IBSCC maintains an archive of published fakes, whose access is strictly limited to those mentioned in point 2 of these rules.

II. COMPOSITION OF THE IBSCC

6. Members of the IBSCC are appointed by the AFC as described in point 3 of these rules. They must agree to give their services freely and are normally not entitled to remuneration or reimbursement of personal expenses incurred. They may not disclose any fact or information made available to them as members of the IBSCC, either during meetings or outside them. They have the right to resign whenever they want, and can be dismissed by decision of the AFC for any reason. They become members of the IBSCC as soon as the AFC has received their agreement, and stop being members as soon as the AFC has either received their resignation, or has decided to dismiss them. By agreeing to become members of the IBSCC, they also agree to accept these rules in full.

7. Members of the IBSCC will be assigned by the AFC into one of the two following categories: ancient coin specialists (“A members”) or modern coin specialists (“M members”). Members of both categories are fully entitled to give opinions and to vote on any kind of coins submitted to the IBSCC.

8. There will be at least 10 members of the IBSCC, in addition to the President of the IBSCC who is also a member. The secretary does not have voting rights, unless he is also a member of the IBSCC. There will always be at least 5 “A members” and 5 “M members”.

III. MEETINGS OF THE IBSCC

9. Meetings will be held either in-person, or by fax or electronic mail or remote conference. All the members of the IBSCC are invited to the meetings. The members of the AFC are informed about all in-person meetings, which they may decide to attend. Non members of the IBSCC may also be invited to participate in such meetings by the President of the IBSCC. Only the IBSCC members have voting rights. Votes at such meetings are normally not secret votes, but it may be decided otherwise by the President of the IBSCC.

10. At in-person meetings, decisions are only valid if at least 5 members are present. If the President of the IBSCC cannot be present, he must appoint a temporary acting President. If the secretary cannot be present, either the meeting has to be electronically recorded, or a temporary acting secretary must be appointed among the members attending the meeting.

11. At any other “meeting”, decisions may only be taken if no member of the IBSCC (including its President), or the President of the AFC objects. If such an objection is raised, the decision in question will be delayed until the next in-person meeting, or until another similar “meeting” is called again after a new development has occurred in the case in question.

IV. AUTHENTICATION OF COINS

12. Coins can be submitted for authentication as mentioned in point 4 of these  rules. Coins must be accompanied by the official, fully completed and signed, submission form. The submitter is responsible for the accuracy of information mentioned on this form. No authentication procedure will usually be started before this document is supplied to the IBSCC. Every submission of coins is subject to acceptance by the IBSCC and can be refused for any reason. The fee mentioned in point 4 of these rules is set by the AFC and must be paid at the end of the procedure, whatever the result of this might be. No fee will be charged for refused coins.

13. Submitters of coins are responsible for them and have to properly insure their coin throughout the course of the authentication procedure. No claim can be made against the IBSCC, the AFC or the IAPN for any reason whatsoever in case of loss of the submitted coin, or damage to it, during the authentication procedure.

14. However, the IBSCC is prepared to provide insurance for any submitted coin, subject to the following conditions and exclusions:

a. No coin may be sent to the IBSCC without written permission of the IBSCC.

b. The value of the coin must be declared in euro, and must be agreed upon by the IBSCC prior to the sending of the coin to the IBSCC.

c. The insurance will attach to the submitted coins upon their receipt by the IBSCC secretary and will be effective until the submitted coins are returned to the submitter.

d. The insurance will cover the risks of loss of the submitted coins, as well as those of damage to the submitted coins during the authentication procedure.

e. Proof of loss during the return of submitted coins to the submitter must be supplied by the submitter directly to the insurance company and is subject to its acceptance. All documents and evidence that the submitted coins have been shipped will be supplied directly to the insurance company by the IBSCC.

f. Proof of damage to a submitted coin will be based on the official reception document issued by the IBSCC and the picture on it, and claim must be sent to the IBSCC no longer than three days after the returned item has been received by the submitter.

g. The fee for such an optional insurance is of 2.5% of the declared value of the submitted coin as mentioned on the submission form, for coins with a declared value not higher than fifty thousand €; no fee will however be lower than 50 €. For submitted coins with a declared value of over fifty thousand €, the fee will be subject to an offer from the insurance company.

h. This fee must be paid in full before the coin is submitted to the IBSCC, and coins will only be considered as insured under the present terms after the fee is paid in full.

i. The submitted coins are insured under the terms of the contract signed and agreed upon by the IBSCC and H.W. Wood Ltd, which are also binding on the submitter of the coins.

15. The President or the secretary of the IBSCC will classify the submitted coins as either “ancient coin” (“A coin”), “modern coin” (“M coin”) or “unspecified coin” (“X coin”).

16. Experts are selected by the IBSCC for their knowledge in a particular numismatic field. Although submitters of coins may suggest experts to whom their coins should be shown, the choice of the experts lies entirely with the IBSCC.

17. Coins will usually be shown to at least two different experts, who will provide a written expertise report. Every person who submits a coin, and every person who is known to have a strong opinion about a submitted coin, should be invited to provide an expertise, which will be added to those requested by the IBSCC.

18. When the various expertise reports have been collected about a coin, the next IBSCC meeting will be asked to take a decision about its authenticity. Even if this decision should be based on the evaluation of the merits of the expertise reports, where possible every member present at the meeting should have a chance to look at the coin before voting.

19. No decision can be made on an “A coin” unless at least two people attending the meeting with voting rights are “A members”.  Equally, no decision can be made on a “M coin” unless at least two people attending the meeting with voting rights are “M members”.

20. Votes are taken by simple majority. However, in the event of a decision on an “A coin”, if there are only two attendees with voting rights who are “A members”, both must agree with the decision, in order for this to be validly ratified. Equally, in the event of a decision on a “M coin”, if there are only two attendees with voting rights who are “M members”, both must agree with the decision, in order for this to be validly ratified.

21. If any member of the IBSCC has an interest in a submitted coin, for instance if he submitted the coin, bought or sold the coin, or would benefit from the decision to be taken on the coin, he must disclose his interest as soon as he knows the coin has been submitted to the IBSCC for authentication. He shall not make decisions about the choice of experts, and cannot participate in the voting about that coin at IBSCC meetings.

22. Certificates are signed by both the President and the secretary of the IBSCC. If either of them refuses to sign, he has to disclose his reasons. If they are purely formal (for instance if he has an interest on the coin as described in point 21 of the present rules), his signature might be replaced by that of the President of the AFC, or by that of any acting President or acting secretary appointed by the AFC. However, if the given reason includes a possible contravention of the rules, the case should be examined by the AFC. In such a case, the AFC will take an appropriate decision at its discretion. 

V. REPORTS AND ARCHIVES

23. Before every meeting, the secretary will send an updated report to all the members, with all the information collected about ongoing cases of submitted coins.

24. All coins determined by the IBSCC as being fakes are added to the IBSCC archive of fake coins. By submitting a coin to the IBSCC for authentication, the submitter agrees to this and is responsible for this being accepted by every third party, whether having an interest or not in the submitted coin. No claim can ever be made about this either by the owner of the coin or by any other third party, and no compensation will be granted for this either by the IBSCC, the AFC or the IAPN.

VI. SECRETARIAT OF THE IBSCC

25. The seat of the IBSCC is located at the current address of the secretary of the IBSCC, unless otherwise decided by the AFC.

26. The secretary is responsible for the procedure of authentication of submitted coins, and for supplying all information and official forms to the parties involved in the authentication procedure.

VII. DISCLAIMER OF LIABILITY

27. IBSCC will render opinions about the authenticity of submitted coins in good faith and based on the materials submitted and the best judgment of IBSCC experts. Such opinions are meant solely for use by members of the IAPN and are binding upon them. Such opinions have no other force and are not meant to serve as the replacement for further expert opinion necessary in the event of a Court case. Certificates of authentication are not assignable: they are only valid for the person who signed the submission form that accompanied the coin when it was submitted to the IBSCC. The IBSCC is not liable to any other party whatsoever, including anyone who may acquire a coin based on the contents of the certificate.

28. In case of new information being brought to the attention of the IBSCC after the issue of an opinion, a case can be re-opened and the whole procedure started again. Until a new decision is reached, the previous one remains valid.

29. In some cases, the IBSCC may be unable to come to a conclusion about the authenticity of a submitted coin. The coin will then be returned to the submitter without issuing a certificate, and no fee will be charged, except the insurance fee mentioned in point 14 of these rules if applicable.

30. By submitting a coin to the IBSCC for authentication, the submitter acknowledges that he has read and understood the present IBSCC rules as posted on the IAPN website, and specifically renounces all claims against the IBSCC, the AFC or the IAPN for any reason whatsoever involving those rules, the authentication procedures or the results of them. The IBSCC, the AFC and the IAPN are not liable for any consequence resulting from the opinion rendered about coins submitted to the IBSCC according to the present rules.