The Video Standards Council has confirmed that the rumoured date for the official implementation of the PEGI ratings system under UK law will be April 1, 2011.
Until that date - almost three years since the Byron Review made the UK government aware that children were potentially at risk from a lack of understanding of game ratings - the legal standard will continue to be the BBFC.
"Although we had hoped that it would be implemented sooner, we are very pleased that the Government has now given us a definite date for implementation of the PEGI ratings system," said Laurie Hall, director-general of the VSC.
"Over the past year or so the VSC has been entirely restructured in terms of staff and other resources. There are some matters outstanding, but we will be fully up to speed and able to take on all our new responsibilities by the turn of the year.
"We have consulted with retailers and acknowledge that January is probably not a good month for the new PEGI launch as they will be dealing with the Christmas break, and the January sales, not to mention the repercussions of the VAT change.
"It is important that all sectors of the industry are fully aware of the changes and ready to take on the legal and other implications. Subject to that we shall be ready in the event the start date is by any chance brought forward."
The statement from the VSC also stressed that games must not be sold in the UK with a PEGI 18 rating on the box until April next year.