The Consumer Rights Act 2015 - Will you be ready?

LHSThe Consumer Rights Act 2015 ("the Act") comes in to force, in England and Wales, from 1st October 2015, and amends and harmonises the law regarding the supply of goods and services when the contract is between a Trader and a Consumer. The Act provides a single set of rules which will apply to all contracts where goods are supplied, including sale, hire, hire-purchase and work / materials contracts. New rules also apply to the supply of services.

We deal with some of the most important changes below:

  • The Act only deals with the relationship between Trader and Consumer. The Sale of Goods Act 1979 (as amended) still governs business to business contracts.
  • Now covers contracts in relation to digital content.
  • Introduces a new short-term right for Consumers to reject faulty goods within the first 30 days after purchase. When exercising this right, the burden of proof is on the Consumer to show, on the balance of probabilities, that the goods are faulty.
  • Thereafter Consumers can only reject having given the Trader the opportunity to repair or replace the faulty item, and this repair/replacement having proved unsuccessful. This could help the Trader, as it does not allow Consumers to automatically reject goods after the 30 days has expired. However, it does create extra pressure on the Trader to ensure that any repair/replacement is done properly, as if it not, the Consumer can reject after only one failed attempt. At this point Consumers also have the option to keep the goods and seek an appropriate price reduction. For all remedies, other than the short-term right to reject, the burden of proof is on the Trader to show the goods are not faulty.
  • With regard to services, the Act introduces an initial right for Consumers to seek repeat performance (i.e. rectification) of any faulty work, at no further cost, and only if this proves unsuccessful, does they have the right to seek a price reduction (which can be as much as a full refund where appropriate).
  • It states that when the goods supplied are installed by the Trader, or under the Trader’s responsibility, then if the installation is incorrect, the goods themselves are deemed to be faulty.




Post date: 30 Sep 2015

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