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How reasonable are you?
How unreasonable are you?
Or perhaps you think reasonableness is a load of old bunkum and 'good faith' is the future?
Whatever your stance, and whether you like it or not, the Consumer Rights Act 2015 includes the somewhat nebulous concept of 'being reasonable' in spades. It pops up in section after section, particularly in connection with the provision of services.
So if you answered 'yes' to the first question, I'll hazard that you'll be ... well ... reasonably pleased.
(Which is, of course, very reasonable of you.)
I suppose that it's no surprise. The law struggles to cater for every eventuality so this handy concept has been dusted off and brought out of the legislative drafter's toolbox to allow for maximum flexibility and minimum fuss.
So what are the new rules on services? To be fair, they look very familiar:
The more noticeable changes, which come into effect this Thursday (1 October), relate to remedies that are available to consumers such as the:
The right to repeat performance is a right to require the trader to perform the service again, to the extent necessary to ensure conformity with the contract.
If the consumer requires such repeat performance (and where it is not impossible), the trader:
As for the right to a price reduction, this is a right to have the price reduced by an appropriate amount (including the right to receive a refund for anything already paid over the reduced amount). The amount may, where appropriate, be the full amount of the price.
Bear in mind that a consumer who has the right to a price reduction and the right to require repeat performance is only entitled to a price reduction if they can't require repeat performance (because it is impossible), or because they have required repeat performance, but the trader hasn't done it within a reasonable time and without significant inconvenience to the consumer.
Finally, the remedies do not affect a consumer's other rights eg a right to seek damages, although the consumer can't be greedy and recover twice for the same loss.
So what do you think? Do these new rules clarify the law? Or do they just make it more complicated? Do let us know below. In the meantime, keep an eye out for tomorrow's post on how the Consumer Rights Act 2015 applies to digital content.
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