Rightly, there has been much talk of the Consumer Rights Act 2015 during recent months, but dealers should remember that they must also comply with the requirements of the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations (2008), which prohibit engaging in unfair business practices across five main categories:
1. Giving false information either verbally, visually or in writing, for example misrepresenting the vehicle’s specification or history at any time before, during or after the transaction.
2. Giving insufficient information omitting or hiding important information, for example failing to disclose the existence and results of all checks carried out on the vehicle’s mechanical condition, history and mileage, or failing to draw the consumers attention to the key elements of any warranty e.g. what’s covered, claim limits and conditions of use.
3. Acting aggressively for example using high pressure selling techniques to sell a vehicle or associated finance or warranty.
4. Failing to act in accordance with reasonable expectations of what’s acceptable
5. Ban of 31 specific practices to include, amongst others: falsely claiming to be a signatory to a Code of Practice; falsely claiming to be approved, endorsed or authorised by a public or private body; falsely stating that a vehicle will only be available for a very limited time in order to elicit an immediate decision to buy.
As of the 1st October 2014 amendments were made to the 2008 Regulations, which gave consumers new rights of redress.
Specifically, if a consumer has been the victim of a misleading action, for example a false statement or aggressive selling, then they will have the right to (A) undo the contract, (B) a discount on the price paid, (C) an entitlement to seek damages.
Should you have any doubt as to the nature and effect of the 2008 Regulations or any other Consumer Law matter that might affect your business, then do not hesitate to contact Lawgistics.