With ‘Black Friday’ looming on November 25thand Christmas presents in mind, most of us will have purchased items we want to return and learned that trying to do this and claim a refund is not always easy.
The Sale of Goods Act 1979 (‘the SGA’) introduced minimum standards consumers could expect when purchasing goods including that the goods were of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose, and matched any description provided. The customer was entitled to reject the goods if they failed to meet these standards, however the right to reject could be lost if, for example, the goods were not rejected within a reasonable time. What constituted a ‘reasonable time’ was, unsurprisingly, the subject of much case law.
However, the right to reject for consumers was fundamentally changed on 1 October 2015, when the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (‘the CRA’) came into force.
When can I claim a refund?
- If breaches are identified within the first 30 days, you can claim a refund and the trader must collect the goods from you (unless the sale contract provides otherwise).
- You can opt for a repair or replacement, which has to be provided within a reasonable time.If you make the request within the first 30 days, the short term right to reject period is paused. You then have the remainder of the 30 day period or seven days (whichever is the longer) in which to reject the repaired/replaced goods.
- If repair/replacement is impossible, unsuccessful or delayed, you can return the goods and claim a refund, or keep them and claim a reduction in price.Any reduction will take into account any use of the goods you have had, unless the goods (except for motor vehicles) are rejected within the first 6 months.