The Law Society welcomes the BIS Select Committee report on the Government’s draft Consumer Rights Bill. It is a thorough analysis of the draft proposals and outlines a number of the ongoing challenges the draft Bill faces in terms of trying to ensure the new law is as clear and simple as possible and can act as a better facilitator for business to consumer transactions.
It is vital that the draft Bill continues to ensure the new law will contain some flexibility and be sensitive to the realities of operating a consumer focussed business. We are concerned that some of the Committee’s recommendations, for example in relation to digital content, may help make the draft Bill’s proposals for such transactions even more inflexible by trying to align the rules too much.
Law Society President Nicholas Fluck said: “The Law Society supports the draft Consumer Rights Bill, as it would be a significant improvement on the current state of affairs – a myriad of confusing laws where customers don’t know their rights and businesses are faced with complex compliance issues. However, we continue to have a number of concerns about aspects of the draft Bill.
“In parts the drafting needs to be made clearer and simpler, the digital content elements are too inflexible and the clauses on unfair contract terms could be improved. The courts and due process must play a central role in the operation of the civil sanctions proposals.”
23 December 2013