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Talk to me about Trading Standards

(11 Posts)
pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 03-Jan-13 00:48:40

Hi, just a quick question about taking a well known company to trading standards.

Where do i stand if i had an item, which proved to be faulty after just under 3 months?

It was checked and wrapped for xmas but ceased to work for more than 30mins.
The retailer is making ME contact the manufacturer and basically doing nout at all about replacing it.

I have been phoning and emailing said retailer on a day to day basis as the manufacturer is ignoring me.

Where do i stand, does anyone know how i can go about getting this item replaced?

Would a small claims court be worth it, or not, the item is worth £120?

Tia x

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 03-Jan-13 01:33:34

Bump

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 03-Jan-13 08:20:26

Under the Sale of Goods Act (see link) an item should be 'fit for purpose' at the time of sale and for a reasonable length of time afterwards - currently defined by European Law as a minimum of six months assuming normal use. Your contract is with the retailer not the manufacturer. So the retailer is incorrect. If you've called the retailer and been turned down, visit a branch in person. Next step would be to contact their head office Customers Services department by phone and letter. Next step contact Trading Standards 08454 04 05 06 more contact details If you get no joy there, talk to CAB and ask their advice. Good luck

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 03-Jan-13 09:23:22

Thankyou Cogitosmile

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 03-Jan-13 09:49:30

Want to name and shame the retailer? smile

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 03-Jan-13 10:01:36

Littlewoods

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 03-Jan-13 10:08:04

After writing a very long email to them last night about my rights as a consumer, all i got back was "we have a deal with the supplier" and "as soon as you get the ref number, we would be happy to help"-well same shit, different day!
Bit hard when the manufacturer isn't responding to mehmm

And for the upteenth time the bank holidays & the word backlog have been mentioned on numerous occasions...hmm like i believe that, considering it's a week and 2 days ago i asked for a replacmentblush

MrAnchovy Thu 03-Jan-13 10:45:14

Under the Sale of Goods Act (see link) an item should be 'fit for purpose' at the time of sale and for a reasonable length of time afterwards

Er, that's not quite right. The provision of the SOGA that applies to things that break is "merchantable quality". Fitness for purpose implies that a kettle will boil water, a blender will mix food without throwing it up the walls etc. The provisions of the SOGA only apply at the time of sale, but if something breaks within its normal life expectation, having not been subject to abnormal usage, it is accepted in the UK that it was not of merchantable quality at the time of sale. For electrical goods generally it is difficult for a retailer to argue that they are not intended to last at least five years and so the SOGA, together with cases decided in the UK, provide much better protection than the European Directive mentioned.

Use the Consumers' Association's standard letters - write to the store you bought it from and the head office.

pumpkinsweetieMasPudding Thu 03-Jan-13 11:15:11

Thankyou MrAnchovy, i will send a letter of to them today.

LC2K8 Mon 07-Jan-13 11:04:20

Merchantable quality hasn't been part of the Sale of Goods Act 1979 (as amended) for nearly 20 years, it's now called "Satisfactory Quality" and the fit for purpose provisions fall under this now.

For goods that go wrong within the first six months, it is now down to the retailer to prove they weren't faulty at the time of purchase, rather than the consumer having to prove it, after six months, it's back to the consumer to prove that they were faulty. Contracts can be sued under for 6 years, providing the expectation of the lifetime of the product is that long.

If you paid by credit card, you may have a claim against your credit card company too, it's called equal liability under the Consumer Credit Act 1974 (section 75). Alternatively, some debit cards offer a "charge back" scheme but this varies.

As I work for Trading Standards, I'd have to clear up a common misconception that we can get your money back for you: we can't. Small claims is the only legal way to ultimately get matters such as this resolved, but persistent nagging can also work quite well. The letters on the consumer association website are good though. The 08454 040506 number is now run by Citizens Advice who do send the information to Trading Standards for assessment against the criminal trading standards law.

The issue is definitely with Littlewoods.

MrAnchovy Mon 07-Jan-13 15:08:20

Merchantable quality hasn't been part of the Sale of Goods Act 1979 (as amended) for nearly 20 years, it's now called "Satisfactory Quality" and the fit for purpose provisions fall under this now.

Sorry, you are absolutely right, although fitness for purpose is still irrelevant to this situation. I should have said "The provision of the SOGA that applies to things that break is 'durability'", and my comment on premature failure being evidence of a latent defect was superfluous. I must have been stuck in a time warp!

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