In Nublue Blog

What new consumer legislation means for your business

Stefan Posted by

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 sets out new rules about the supply of digital content, which could impact your business. Today's article is courtesy of John Pickervance over at our partner Forbes Solicitors, who explains what these changes could mean for you.

On 1st October the latest piece of consumer law came into force, bringing a number of laws relating to the sale of goods and services up to date – including the first ever inclusion of references to digital content.

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 introduces new remedies for consumers where businesses do not comply with their legal requirements; set out unfair contract terms; and for the first time also includes new rules on the supply of digital content… finally recognising modern practice!

‘Digital content’ refers to data produced and supplied in digital form and will include software, films, downloaded music and mobile apps.

Amongst other things, the Act preserves the requirement for goods to be of a satisfactory quality and to match a description, so nothing is new there. The most radical changes relate to the remedies which consumers now have, and this is something that all businesses dealing with consumers need to be aware of to avoid penalties. Consumer remedies include a short-term right to reject goods within 30 days, an entitlement to have goods repaired or replaced (at the consumer’s choice), an ability to claim a price reduction and a final right to reject the goods if a repair or replacement if unsuccessful. Consumers may also be able to claim compensation from businesses for losses caused by faulty goods.

The Act also requires that services be provided with reasonable care and skill, implies certain terms into the contract where they are not specified and gives consumers rights where they rely on information provided to them by a business. Possible remedies available to consumers include requiring the services to be repeated to meet the appropriate standard, making a price reduction and claiming compensation.

Given that the Act will fill in the gaps where a contract does not cover something, it is recommended that businesses ensure that their terms and conditions are up to date and used properly to ensure compliance with the new laws and to ensure certainty of time, price, and the desired result being achieved.

John Pickervance of Forbes Solicitors regularly assists businesses with contractual matters, be they business-to-consumer or business-to-business matters. John also now offers a completely free service whereby to get to know your business better he will visit your premises and review what you do and don’t have in place from a legal perspective. He’ll then produce a report for you summarising the ‘legal health’ of your business and highlight things for you to consider in a suggested order of priority. For further information or advice and assistance with any particular legal matters please feel free to contact John Pickervance at john.pickervance@forbessolicitors.co.uk or on 0800 689 3206.

Stefan

Author Stefan

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