Commenting on the Consumer Rights Bill, which this afternoon received Royal Assent, Nicky Strong, Regulatory lawyer at law firm Bond Dickinson said:
“The aim of the Consumer Rights Bill is to streamline key consumer rights, aligning the inconsistent remedies previously available for consumers under different contract types, and introducing a generic set of consumer law investigatory powers. The headlines suggest that the changes are largely a matter of common sense but the devil is in the detail and the main concern around the Bill is how the enforcement and remedies sections are going to work in practice.
“Under the new changes, consumers will have the right to a reduction in the price or to reject the goods after only one unsuccessful repair or replacement. This is one part that is causing some significant uncertainty. Businesses are already expressing concerns as to how they should approach customer complaints and what remedies can be used and when.
“It is clear that greater clarity is still required on certain aspects of the Bill and how it will operate, and with only six months and a General Election to go, it may be cutting it fine for the Department of Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) to produce guidance which is helpful at a practical level.”