Trading Standards Service    



Consumer Rights Act 2015


The Consumer Rights Act 2015 is a consolidating Act, but it also introduces some significant changes to consumer law. Consumers’ rights in relation to the sale of goods and unfair terms remain broadly the same as under the statutes the Act replaces, but are clarified and enhanced in places.


The Act is divided into three parts.




More information...


Part 1 deals with consumer contracts for goods, digital content, and services.

Consumers’ rights in contracts for goods and services remain broadly similar requiring that goods are of satisfactory quality, fit for particular purposes, and correspond with samples. However significant changes have been made to consumer remedies in respect of faulty goods.


For a summary of consumers' rights and remedies under the act see the consumer page.



The sale & supply of goods*

The supply of services*

Digital content*

Part 2 deals with unfair terms.

While broadly similar to previous legislation, including the 'grey' and 'black' lists of terms, the Act introduces some changes which increase a court's ability to intervene in consumer contracts.


Changes include the exclusion of price terms from scrutiny for unfairness, provided such a term is transparent and prominent. In other words not buried in contractual small print. Businesses should be aware that they may need to revise their standard terms and other sales documents in light of these changes.


For more information see the link(s) on the right.



Unfair contract terms*

Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) guidance

Part 3 contains miscellaneous provisions, including enforcement powers.


Some features include:

Unless it would defeat the object, officers have to give notice in writing of the visit to reach the occupier at least 2 working days in advance.

Officers can make test purchases and observe the way a business operated without disclosing their identity or giving advance notice.

Officers have the power to write to a business to compel them to provide information, this can be backed up by a court order.

If advance notice is not given, a notice including the explanation of the offence of obstruction must be given to the occupier on entry to the premises.

Identification must be shown on entry to premises.

Powers of inspection, seizure, breaking open containers, obtain warrants, etc. remain the same but officers must produce evidence of identity and authority to do so before seizing items.

The relevant person must be informed of the results of testing or analysis.


Investigatory powers of enforcers (BIS)

Trading standards - inspections and powers*

In addition



Duty of letting agents to publicise fees

The duty placed on letting agents to display fees came into effect on 27th May 2015. The Act lays down the manner in which fees are to be displayed and the details to be included. For more information see links right.


Letting agents - display of fees *


Secondary ticketing

Under the Consumer Rights Act people should be able to see the original face value of a ticket, any restrictions on sale and the seat/row number or standing area.



The sale & resale of tickets*

Secondary ticketing guidance (BIS)

Alternative disputes resolution

Separate from the Consumer Rights Act, but just as important, is Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). ADR is an option all businesses can benefit from when a dispute cannot be settled directly with the consumer. Guidance on ADR, including detailed guidance from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), can be found in 'Alternative dispute resolution'.


Alternative dispute resolution*



* our advice sheets


Gloucestershire Trading Standards, The Tri-Service Centre, Waterwells Drive, Quedgeley, Gloucester GL2 2AX


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This page was last edited on 07/12/16