Your Consumer Rights


                                     Richard Hearn


We are often asked to advise on disputes over consumer goods such as costly electronic items, household furniture and sports equipment. Helpfully we usually can say that our clients have more rights than they are lead to believe by the retailers they're dealing with.

The Consumer Guarantees Act for example provides rights and guarantees for you as a consumer when purchasing goods or services for your personal and household use.  It applies to any retail sale of goods or services, but not private sales.

That Act gives a number of guarantees about the ownership, delivery and purpose of a product, but it’s more commonly used as protection and a sword when goods aren’t of an acceptable quality or they are not fit for their intended purpose.

Generally, goods are of an acceptable quality where they are fit for the purpose for which they are typically supplied for, free from defects and are safe and durable.  This test is assessed on the basis of what a reasonable consumer, being aware of the state and condition of the goods, would consider as acceptable.  Things like their nature, price and any statements that are made about them on labelling are all taken into account.

If what you’ve bought doesn’t meet the above requirements, you can insist that the retailer fix the fault. If they don’t, you can then have it remedied elsewhere or reject the goods and get your money back.  

Where the fault can’t be remedied or it's substantial, you can however reject the goods straight away. 

To give an example, should you purchase a TV that is advertised as having 3 HDMI cable ports but only 2 ports work, or the retailer tells you it has a Netflix remote button and it doesn’t work, you can return the TV to the retailer within a reasonable time of the purchase.  The retailer has to fix it at their cost or give you your money back.

If you would like further information on your rights as consumer, please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss.

Call or email Richard Hearn for more information.