Christmas time is of course the busiest time of year for retailers. When buying presents for family and friends it is obviously good to support local businesses and the local economy, however, more and more people are buying on-line and EU Laws give you strong protection as a consumer when you buy on-line. The Consumer Rights Directive covers you when you buy from businesses based in the EU so remember to check the geographical address of any business that you are buying from. If you are purchasing goods from a website which is based outside the EU then your contract with that business is governed by the terms and conditions that appear on that website.
It is more advisable to purchase from a website which is based within the EU. Before you complete any purchase on-line the business must give you clear information on:
- The name of the business including any trade names
- A description of what you are buying
- The postal address (not a PO Box) and contact details including an e-mail address and phone number for the business
- The price including any taxes
- The delivery costs and any costs for returning the item
- The arrangements for payment and delivery
- Details of how to cancel your order and get a refund. You should be able to cancel using a cancellation form available on their website.
- Details on what to do if you change your mind and a copy of the form for returning the goods. You have a cooling off period of 14 days under EU Law to change your mind provided the goods are not perishable.
- The cost of ordering e.g the cost of a premium rate phone call if you order this way.
- How long the offer or price is valid.
- Details of any guarantees or after sales services.
- Confirmation of your order in a durable form eg a letter or an e-mail
If a business based in the EU does not provide you with this information then they are in breach of the Consumer Rights Directive.
We wish you all a Happy Christmas and a Prosperous New Year.
For information on any legal matters please contact O’Hara Solicitors, Cross Street, Athenry, Co. Galway; telephone 091-844045.