Many of you will have bagged a bargain during the Black Friday deals this week and/or perhaps you are waiting to see what deals are available online tomorrow, during Cyber Monday. Either way, here’s five things you need to know:

  • If your purchase turns out to be faulty – act quickly as the Consumer Rights Act says that you have the right to an automatic refund if goods are faulty within the first 30 days after purchase. This means that you have to notify the trader within the 30 day period.
  • If you want to change your mind – If you made your purchase instore you will have to see what the trader’s returns policy says. There is no obligation on traders to allow you to return goods purchased in store, just because you have changed your mind. If you purchase online, the position is very different. The Consumer Contracts Regulations says that you can return goods purchased online, within 14 days of delivery – no questions asked.
  • If you fall for a scam – With the number of scams online it is inevitable that a large number of people will have fallen for a scam this week. If you make a purchase that turns out to be a scam, there may be a remedy, depending on how you paid for the purchase. If you paid on your credit card, and the purchase price was greater than £100, you can turn to your credit card company and make what is known as a section 75 claim. If you paid on your debit card you have a similar right with the card provider, but it is called the ‘chargeback scheme’.
  • Dispelling the myths – There is a widespread belief that you have less consumer rights when you buy goods in the sales, such as during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This is nothing more than a myth; it doesn’t matter whether you pay full price or receive a discount, your consumer rights remain the same. 
  • Making a complaint – If something goes wrong with your purchase the first port of call is to complain to the trader. Most will take your complaint seriously and provide the correct resolution. However if this is not the case, you have a few options: i) you can ask if they are a member of an alternative dispute resolution scheme – such as RetailADR – www.retailadr.org.uk, Consumer Arbitration – www.consumerarbitration.co.uk or the Furniture Ombudsman – www.furnitureombudsman.org.uk , ii) turn to your credit/debit card provider, as I have explained above, or iii) go to the Small Claims Court.

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