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New Rights and Remedies for Consumers

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 comes into force on 1 October 2015. The legislation creates new rights and remedies that will be afforded to consumers in respect of faulty or mis-described goods, services and digital content. Most retailers and service businesses will need to review their standard contracts and existing complaints handling procedures in order to comply with the new Act.

The Act includes:

  • New Implied Terms: the Act implies various new terms into consumer contracts such that consumers will be entitled to claim for costs they incur if a trader is in breach of those implied terms
  • New Consumer Remedies: consumers will have the right to a number of innovative remedies in relation to goods, services and digital content including price deduction; required re-performance; and rejection of goods/services after only one unsuccessful repair/ replacement
  • New Rules on Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts (Part 2 of the Act): a new formulation for unfair terms in consumer contracts replacing the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999
  • Rules on supplying Digital Content: consumers will be afforded specific rights and remedies for digital content (e.g. computer games and downloads). Consumers will be entitled to claim damages if the digital content supplied by the trader damages their device or other digital content if the consumer can prove the trader did not exercise reasonable skill and care.

Businesses will need to modify their complaints handling processes and procedures to best comply with the new rights consumers will have under the Act. Specific information must be available to a consumer at the point of sale so as to comply with the Act. Further, traders will have to consider the approach the courts will take to the unfair terms provisions, and the broadness of the rules on the supply of digital content.

This article is for information purposes only and does not constitute specific legal advice. For further information on the issues in this article please contact us on +44 (0)20 8528 1132 or at info@arifjakobs.com.