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Know your consumer rights this Christmas…

December 17th 2015
By: Melanie Hollidge

It’s at this time of year more than any other time that we will be spending more money in shops and on-line, so it’s more important than ever to understand our consumer rights. This year a new Consumer Act was passed which gives shoppers even more rights when buying goods, even when they buy on line – this includes downloads, streaming, apps and even e-books.
 
So what are your consumer rights under the new act?
 
If you buy any goods from any retailer including an on-line retailer you are now entitled to a full refund 30 days after purchase, this includes digital goods too, such as music downloads. Your money must be refunded within a 14 day period.
 
If you have bought goods that are faulty you can even ask them to repair or replace the goods within 6 months of your initial purchase.
 
If you change your mind you cannot ask to exchange goods even if they are in good condition, however this is down to the discretion of individual shops.
 
Under the new consumer act, shops will not be able to enforce any unfair terms onto a consumer. Retailers who do not adhere to these new changes could face prosecution.
 
In most cases if you buy goods on line you will be covered by the distant selling act.
 
If you plan on buying goods from an auction site and they were bought from a retailer then you will also be able to exercise your buying rights. If you buy goods from an individual on line then you won’t have the same rights. Second-hand goods bought on the high street are also covered, but refunds would be reflected in the buying price.
 
If you pay for a download and it puts a virus on your computer then you will be entitled to claim back any money to get it fixed.
 
If you have a haircut or a massage and are not happy a consumer now has the right to a refund or to put it right.
 
To find out more about the changes to consumer rights please follow this link to the Citizens Advice website.