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I have a problem with something I’ve bought

When you purchase goods from a trader, the Consumer Rights Act 2015 states that they should be of satisfactory quality. This means that there should be no faults or damage and the goods should be durable.

The goods should also be the same as any sample or model that you were shown, match the sellers description and be fit for any purpose that you made known to the trader for example, if you were sold a car that is supposed to be able to tow a boat, but the connection doesn’t work properly then you could argue that the car is not fit for purpose.

Within the first 30 days

If it’s been 30 days or less since you bought the goods and you don’t believe they were of satisfactory quality at the time, then you could be entitled to return them to the trader for a full refund, this is called your short term right to reject. You may have to prove that the goods weren’t of satisfactory quality at them time of sale.

You should be refunded within 14 days of the goods being returned to the trader and this should be by the same method that you paid for example if you paid in cash then you should normally expect a cash refund.  

After the first 30 days

You can also ask the trader to repair the goods or provide you with a like for like replacement, they should do this within a reasonable period of time and without causing you any significant inconvenience. If it’s not possible for the trader to repair or replace the goods, then you can decide to keep them and ask for a discount or return them to the trader for a refund.

If you ask the trader for a repair or replacement within the first 6 months of purchasing the goods, the it falls to the trader to prove they were not faulty when sold to you after this 6-month period it falls to the you to prove otherwise.

Can I ask for a refund?

You’re only required to give the trader one opportunity to repair or replace the goods. If a repair by the trader fails or you discover that the replacement item is also faulty then you can decide whether to give the trader another opportunity to repair or replacement the goods or whether to return them for a refund, this is called your final right to reject.  

It’s important to note that if you’ve had the goods for more than 6 months or a vehicle for more than 30 days then the trader may be entitled to offer only a partial refund to account for the use and wear and tear.  You should be refunded within 14 days of the goods being returned to the trader and this should be by the same method that you paid.  

What should I do next?

If you haven’t already done so then you should try to speak with the trader about your problem to see if you can to come to an agreement. You can then follow this up with a more formal letter of complaint. It’s best to send this by signed for mail which will allow you to check that it’s been received, alternatively you could send an email with a read receipt. You should also give the trader a reasonable timescale to reply.

Last updated: 29 March 2019

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