The Consumer Act 2015 is a milestone in reform aimed at consolidating a number of laws on consumer rights.
The new law will come into force from 1 October 2015 and applies to contracts between a trader and consumer.
A full discussion is outside the scope of this article but some changes include:
- Digital content, such as downloaded songs, are now caught under consumer law, whereas previously users could not rely on consumer law for any complaints.
- If the goods or services provided are not up to scratch, a consumer’s remedies have been widened. Depending on the product, the consumer could be entitled to a short term rejection of the goods, repair or replacement, or in the case of services, a repeat performance, and a final right to reject goods, or a reduction in price.
Emphasis has been placed on ‘relevant terms’ in a contract. They have to be:
- Transparent, in plain language; and
- Prominent - meaning an average consumer must be aware of the terms being brought to the attention of the consumer.
It is vital you consider a review of your company’s consumer practices, contracts and terms and conditions in order to remain compliant with your obligations as a trader and to avoid falling foul of the new laws.
For more information about consumer practices please contact a member of our Business Law Team on 01279 755777.