Used software

Buying used software – questions and answers

Again and again we at Software ReUse receive similar questions about used software, both from the buyer and the seller side. Many are still not sure whether trading with used software is completely legal or what the advantages of used software are. We have summarised the most frequent of these questions for you here.

Again, if there are still uncertainties or if you have further questions about pre-owned software, please feel free to contact us at any time. We will be glad to help you personally!

You have questions about used software? We have the answers!

We are a software remarketer active throughout Europe, i.e. we buy and sell used software, mainly from the major manufacturers Microsoft, Adobe, SAP, Oracle and Quark. In this way, companies can save up to 75% of their costs or use idle reserves in the form of software licences that are no longer used. We would also be happy to advise you on how to optimise the purchase of your software licences. Contact us!

The term “used software” is in fact misleading, since software consists of bits and bytes and cannot therefore get worn out. Here, “used” only means that the software is not in initial use and doesn’t come directly from the manufacturer. Apart from that, it’s as new. This is one of the advantages of used software. 

Definitely yes. Trade in second-hand software is legal throughout Europe. On 3 July 2012, the European Court of Justice ruled as follows: “A software producer cannot oppose the resale of its “used” licences enabling the use of its programs downloaded from the internet (…) even if the licence agreement prohibits a subsequent sale.” More detailed info on this can also be found on our page “Legal basis for used software”.

We only buy from trustworthy sources who must confirm that the software is no longer in use.
We check the data carriers to see if they are in good condition and readable.
Furthermore, we check whether the software has been registered with the manufacturer and carry out a legally compliant licence transfer.
These three steps ensure that the software can be used in your company without any problems!

Depending on the type of licence you have ordered, you will receive:

  • Original licence keys or serial numbers (MAK and KMS).
  • data of the original owner, contract information and deletion declaration
  • optional: data carrier (if applicable or ordered)
  • Invoice and delivery note

You retain the rights of the original purchaser even with second-hand software. If the used version is an update-authorised version, you also retain the right to acquire an update. The situation is similar in terms of maintenance. 

It is recommended to buy used software only from well-known providers who have been in the market for years. 

Software ReUse has been transferring used software licences since 2011 – without any objections from software manufacturers. We disclose all documents, as required in accordance with the ECJ judgment of 2012.  

Companies are frequently audited by software manufacturers. Correct licensing is imperative to avoid expensive costs of relicensing or even legal problems. 

Software ReUse stands for transparency – we disclose all documents for purchased software licences. These generally include the declaration of cancellation from the original purchaser, contract numbers and other important contract components. In the event of an audit by the software manufacturer, you can therefore clearly prove that you have licensed your used software correctly.  Because of this transparency, we have been transferring used software since our foundation in 2011 – without any objections from software manufacturers.  

It is recommended to sell used software to dealers who already have a lot of expertise in this complex area. 

Have you switched to the Microsoft leasing model? Software ReUse pays top prices for software licences that you no longer need. Even if you have used the discount for “Upgrade from Software Assurance”, you can legally dispose of your licences. Contact our team to get an evaluation of your licence portfolios.  

You can also find more detailed information and answers to your questions on used software on our pages on the Legal basis or on Licence transfer. We have also summarised all benefits of trading in used software again and offer you our help in a software audit. 

You can find more detailed information and answers to your questions about used software on our pages on the legal basis or on licence transfer, we have also summarised all the advantages of trading in used software and we offer you our help with a software audit!

Interested in buying or selling software for your business?

Reporting on Software ReUse