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Document 32010R1210

Euro authenticity checks

Euro authenticity checks



Regulation (EU) No 1210/2010 — authentication of euro coins and handling of euro coins unfit for circulation


  • It sets out the procedures and methods for the authentication of euro coins and the handling of coins that are unfit for circulation.
  • It complements Regulation (EC) No 1338/2001 — System for protecting the euro against counterfeiting, which requires banks and other payment service providers to ensure that the euro notes and coins they receive and intend to put back into circulation are tested for authenticity in order to detect potential counterfeiting.



The regulation requires credit institutions to ensure that they authenticate euro coins either by means of appropriate coin-processing equipment or manually by staff trained specifically for the purpose. Any coin-processing equipment used must have already successfully passed a detection test carried out by the competent national authority or by the Coin National Analysis Centre in each country of the euro area.

On-the-spot controls

Countries in the euro area must perform annual on-the-spot controls in institutions to check, by means of detection tests, that a representative number of coin-processing machines function correctly. The number of coin-processing machines to be checked annually in each country must be such that the volume of euro coins processed by those machines during that year represents at least 25 % of the total cumulated net volume of coins issued by that country. This must be from the date of the introduction of euro coins until the end of the previous year.

Withdrawal and reimbursement of euro coins unfit for circulation

EU countries are required to remove from circulation not only counterfeit coins but also any genuine euro coins that have become unfit due to prolonged circulation, to an accident or to any other reason. EU countries may refuse the reimbursement to individuals of euro coins that are unfit for circulation and that have been altered either deliberately or by a process that could be reasonably expected to have the effect of altering them.

Each national authority handling euro coins unfit for circulation may levy a handling fee on legal or natural persons in order to meet the expenses related to the process. Handling fees should not be applied to submissions of small quantities of euro coins unfit for circulation.

The regulation sets out rules for the packaging of euro coins unfit for circulation, which must be sorted per denomination* in standardised bags or boxes.

Reporting and evaluation

Each year, EU countries must submit reports to the European Commission on their experience of authenticating euro coins.

To monitor institutions’ compliance, EU countries may request them to provide the following information:

  • the types and number of coin-processing machines used;
  • the location of each coin-processing machine;
  • the volume of coins processed per coin-processing machine, per year and per denomination, for at least the three highest denominations.

As laid down in the regulation, in 2017 the Commission presented to the European Parliament and to the Council the latest report on the operation and effects of the regulation.


It has applied since 1 January 2012, with the exception of its Chapter III (handling of euro coins unfit for circulation), which has applied since 11 January 2011.


For more information, see:


Denominations: euro coins are minted in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents, and 1 and 2 euros.


Regulation (EU) No 1210/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 December 2010 concerning authentication of euro coins and handling of euro coins unfit for circulation (OJ L 339, 22.12.2010, pp. 1-5)


Report from the Commission to the Economic and Financial Committee under Article 12(4) of Regulation (EU) No 1210/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 December 2010 concerning authentication of euro coins and handling of euro coins unfit for circulation (C(2017) 6734 final, 12.10.2017)

Regulation (EU) No 651/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 4 July 2012 on the issuance of euro coins (OJ L 201, 27.7.2012, pp. 135-137)

Council Regulation (EC) No 1338/2001 of 28 June 2001 laying down measures necessary for the protection of the euro against counterfeiting (OJ L 181, 4.7.2001, pp. 6-10)

Successive amendments to Regulation (EC) No 1338/2001 have been incorporated into the original document. This consolidated version is of documentary value only

last update 06.12.2017