When they say “I’ve been told by Trading Standards…”


This used to be Consumer Direct but which is now run by the Citizens’ Advice Bureaux.

Author: Jason Williams
Reading time: 2 minutes

This article is 6 years old.

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Take it with a pinch of salt – they almost certainly haven’t. What is more likely to have happened is that the person has rung the consumer advice helpline. This used to be Consumer Direct but which is now run by the Citizens’ Advice Bureaux. (CAB)

Part of the arrangement that the CAB have in providing that service, is that every complaint must be sent to the Trading Standards Office which is local to both the complainant and the trader complained of. The merits of the complaint are irrelevant they are compelled to pass the information on. Of course when a consumer is told that their complaint has been passed on they use that information as some kind of weapon against you. It is a blunt weapon 99% of the time.

However, this why we see so many letters to clients saying “you have been reported to Trading Standards” – or  that “Trading Standards  are aware of your [insert heinous crime]…..”  Chances are their complaint will never be considered by Trading Standards. Indeed, when I get letters claiming that a customer has been told something by Trading Standards I invite them to tell me the name of the person who they spoke to so that I may make contact with them. You may wish to consider doing similarly if you are orally told this as we find it usually exposes the fact that Trading Standards have given no such advice whatsoever.

Jason Williams

Legal Advisor

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