2014 saw the main focus of commercial law on consumer protection legislation. Terri Corti looks at what this means for you the consumer.
The Consumer Rights Directive came into force on 13 June 2014 and strengthens the existing Distance Selling Regulations. This means that consumers cannot be subject to unwarranted and additional charges e.g. credit card payment surcharges must now not be ‘excessive’.
It also adds additional automatic rights of cancellation for consumer contracts, so that, for instance, ancillary contracts are also automatically cancelled at the same time.
The Government added a new right to sue for aggressive or misleading selling practices from 1 October 2014; this is again a protection limited to consumers.
This give you new rights to redress – specifically if you’ve been the victim of a misleading action – for example a false statement – or aggressive selling.
These break down into three key areas:
Generally, this emphasis on consumer legislation is set to continue in 2015 with the Consumer Rights Bill and the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill both originally scheduled to receive the Royal Assent (and so become law) in this Parliamentary session.
However, the General Election of 2015 is fast approaching, and it may well be that this ‘housekeeping’ legislation goes by the wayside in the face of an incoming Parliament’s new legislative programme.The Company and Commercial team will be providing regular updates and information in the monthly Pinney Talfourd newsletter. If you are not already on our mailing list you can subscribe here.
This article was written by Terri Corti, Consultant Solicitor in the Commercial Team at Pinney Talfourd. This article is only intended to provide a general summary and does not constitute legal advice. Specific legal advice should be taken on each individual matter. This article is based on the law as at January 2015.