The Government has recently announced the first steps to stimulate the economy which includes reopening retail shops and outlets. This is a welcome and positive announcement for many people. However, a large number of consumers will understandably remain cautious about venturing outside due to COVID-19 and will continue to shop online for goods and services. It is very likely this trend will rise substantially in the coming months and it is therefore important to be aware of your rights under the law.
The basic law
Consumer rights are derived from the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (the CRA), which consolidated and reformed previous consumer law and regulations applicable in the UK. The CRA is considered to be the single most important consumer law instrument in the UK and applies to consumer rights and remedies in respect of goods, services and digital content, as well as unfair terms in consumer contracts and consumer notices.
What does the CRA prescribe?
Under the CRA, goods and digital content must be of satisfactory quality and fit for purpose. The goods must be as they are described and match a sample or model that can be seen or examined by the consumer. Where goods and digital content do not conform to CRA standards, the consumer can seek remedies for a breach of contract against the seller.
Where services are bought by the consumer, the CRA states that these must be provided with reasonable skill and care, and that the service must be performed in line with the information provided about the service and the individual trader performing that service. Further, where no price has been agreed for a service, consumers should pay a reasonable price.
Goods must be delivered at a time or within a period as agreed by the consumer and the seller. Where no time has been agreed, the seller is obliged to deliver goods within 30 days of the order without any undue delay.
Where time for performance of a service has not been agreed, the CRA prescribes that the service must be provided within a reasonable time.
The information contained in this article must not be taken to be legal advice. For more information on consumer rights, as well as any remedies that you may be entitled to, please contact Arvin Bissessur, Solicitor in Axiom Stone’s Corporate and Commercial Department on 0203 827 6122 or firstname.lastname@example.org.