The Consumer Rights Act 2015 has recently been introduced. However, new data from the RAC shows just one in 20 (5%) motorists are aware of the new law that gives anyone buying a vehicle significantly more protection if it turns out to be faulty.
The RAC believes the new law will strengthen the hand of buyers who think they have been mis-sold a used car or if a fault is revealed within the first 30 days. The new ‘short-term right to reject’ provision allows the buyer to demand a full refund – previously the dealer could simply replace or repair a faulty item or part.
Up to six months from the original date of sale, the dealer will be obliged to repair or replace the faulty part, and will only have one opportunity to fix the problem. If a repair or replacement is not possible or unsuccessful, the buyer will still be able to demand a reduced price or exercise their ‘final right to reject’, and demand full or partial repayment.
New research from the RAC’s Opinion Panel found that 95% of respondents were unaware of the new law. Of those that did know about it, just 30% correctly identified that the law came into force on 1 October 2015.
Despite the changes, four in 10 (39%) said they felt the new law would do nothing to change their confidence when purchasing their next used car, underlining the continuing deep-rooted mistrust of dealers.
However, the RAC warns that after six months the onus will be on the buyer to prove there is a fault with their vehicle, and that it was present at the time of sale. Motorists therefore need to be clear on their rights.