APHC is calling all plumbing and heating contractors to have their say on the implementation of the EU Consumer Rights Directive (CRD) as some of the changes could impact small businesses within the industry.
Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) has this week launched a consultation exercise calling all affected businesses to share their views on the UK implementation of the CRD. This consultation is relevant to all UK businesses selling to UK consumers especially members of the plumbing and heating industry. Many of the questions within the consultation will be particularly relevant to the smaller plumbing and heating contractor selling off-premises (e.g. at consumer homes). Changes proposed to the following aspects will have the greatest effect on plumbing and heating businesses:
• Information to be given before a consumer buys goods or services away from the trader’s premises (e.g. at home) or at a distance (internet).
• Cancellation rights and responsibilities where the consumer buys goods or services away from the trader’s premises or at a distance.
For all sales of goods and services within the scope of the Directive, whether or not bought away from the trader’s premises or at a distance:
• Fees charged for a particular method of payment (e.g. credit card surcharges). Under the CRD these must not exceed the cost to the trader of using that method.
• Delivery times for goods and passing of risk. These provisions will apply to all sale of goods contracts, not just those concluded at a distance. The CRD clarifies deadlines for delivery of goods and where responsibilities lie if there is a problem.
• Additional payments (i.e. payments additional to the main price for the goods or services) which must, under the CRD, be the subject of active or express consent by the consumer (for example, pre-ticked boxes which the consumer must ‘un-tick’ will no longer be permitted).
John Thompson, APHC Chief Executive explained: “I would urge all businesses to read through the document and put forward their views on the proposed changes that could have an impact on their businesses. As this is an EU directive, agreed by all member states, it is especially important that UK Plumbing and heating businesses make their voice heard to ensure that their needs are not ignored as an outcome of this new directive.”
For more information on the consultation or to complete the consultation questionnaire click here: http://www.bis.gov.uk/Consultations/consultation-implementation-consumer-rights-directive.