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In this task I am going to investigate statutory consumer protection. I will be taking part in a legal meeting (acting as a Contract Law Solicitor) representing Jordan Smith who wants to make 2 complaints; one to the manager of Comfyfloors and the other t

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Unit 21

Task 3

Suhaib Bashir

Introduction

In this task I am going to investigate statutory consumer protection. I will be taking part in a legal meeting (acting as a Contract Law Solicitor) representing Jordan Smith who wants to make 2 complaints; one to the manager of Comfyfloors and the other to Trevor Taylor.

Consumer protection lawimage00.png

Consumer protection is there to protect a buyer from the seller. Everyday of our lives we consume, use, or simply come into contact with countless different products. We should be able to assume that those products are safe. The aim of Consumer Protection Act is to help safeguard the consumer from the products that do not reach a reasonable level of safety.

The Sale of Goods Act 1979 also protects consumers from sellers. This Act sets out the basic rights of consumers when buying goods from a company or business.

Jordan v Comfyfloors

  • A contract is formed when one party makes an offer, the other accepts, and both parties’ give some sort of consideration. In Jordan v Comfyfloors case the contract has been formed under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 because Comfyfloors (the seller) agreed to transfer the carpet to Jordan (the buyer) for money. This law gives customer the right to complaint for damages and demand the seller to sort out the problem.
  • Implied terms aren't written down anywhere, but are understood to exist. If there's nothing clearly agreed between you and your employer about a particular matter, then it may be covered by an implied term. In a contract implied terms could be the following:
  • Right to sell goods – The seller must have the right to sell the goods, if the sale is made privately; there is no duty by the seller to ensure quality or suitability. In the case of (Jordan v Comfyfloors) Jordan is covered under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 as he purchased the carpet legally from the business.
  • As described - Goods should meet the description given by the seller. The description on the packaging must also be accurate. In some cases, you buy goods after seeing a sample; the goods you receive must match the sample. There was a breach of implied terms in the case of Jordan v Comfyfloors because the carpet was described as 80% wool, but when examined Jordan discovered that there was a label  on the back of one of the pieces stating 50% wool. Also there were variations in the colour and pattern.
  • Of satisfactory quality - To be of satisfactory quality, products must normally:
  • Do what they are supposed to do
  • Be safe
  • Be free from defects, including minor ones
  • function properly for a reasonable period of time
  • have a reasonably satisfactory finish and appearance

Going back to the case of Jordan v Comfyfloors, the carpet was described as high quality and very luxurious to walk on, but after examining the carpet Jordan discovered that there were variations in the colour and patterns.  

  • Fit for purpose – if goods turn out to be unsuitable for their intended use or develop a fault in an unusually short period of time the buyer has a right to a refund or damages. Reading the case of Jordan v Comfyfloors the carpet was still fit for purpose and there was no obvious damage in the carpet. Jordan also did not express how luxurious he wanted the carpet to be or the specific purpose of the carpet is going to be used for.
  • Samples - Where goods are bought by bulk and the buyer has tested or examined a small number of those goods, the seller is obliged to make sure that every item in the bulk corresponds with the quality of the sample tested or examined. In the case of Jordan and Comfyfloors legally Comfyfloors should have asked Jordan if the wanted to have a look at the bulk before the purchase.

Jordan v Trevor Taylor

  • As I have mentioned before a contract is formed when one party makes an offer, the other accepts, and both parties give some sort of consideration. In Jordan v Trevor Taylor case the contract has been formed under the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 because, Trevor Taylor (Carpet Fitter) agreed to fit the carpet for money.
  • Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 and Implied terms - The Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 aims to protect consumers against bad workmanship or the poor provision of services. It covers contracts for work and materials, as well as contracts for pure services, this still applies even in everyday situations, such as going to the hairdressers or the dry cleaners where you have no physical contract at all. Just as with Sale of Goods, Supply of Goods and Services legislation contains statutory rights, which don’t have to be specifically mentioned in any contract, but cannot be excluded. These are:
  • That the supplier will carry out the service with reasonable care and skill
  • That the work will be carried out in reasonable time (unless timeframe has been specifically agreed)
  • That the work will be carried out at reasonable cost (unless cost has been specifically agreed) Trevor charged a reasonable price it was the quality that Jordan weren’t happy with.
  • When goods are transferred in a business situation, they must be fit for purpose and of suitable quality
  • In this case there is an implied term that the carpet fitter will carry out the service with reasonable care and skill

In the case of Trevor Taylor and Jordan there has been a breach of implied terms, because Trevor Taylor the carpet fitter under the Sales of Goods and Services Act 1982 did not take the reasonable care and Jordan was clearly not happy after examining the work as he noticed that Trevor had cut the carpet short in 3 or 4 places, so that it did not reach the wall.

Technically Jordan can sue Trevor Taylor under the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 if he’s not happy with the work. I suggest Jordan should give Trevor a chance to fix the carpet, Jordan should inform Trevor when he is not happy straight away and in writing with a list of specific problems and deadlines. This will save Jordan and Trevor time and hustle and give Trevor a chance to put the things right.

  • The Trade Descriptions Act 1968 makes it an offence for a trader to apply, by any means, false or misleading statements, or to knowingly or recklessly make such statements about services. Jordan’s rights have been affected as he bought the carpet having seen a sample in the showroom because, the Comfyfloors made the false representation with the intention of selling the carpet. It comes under fraudulent misrepresentation as the false statement was made by the Comfyfloors while selling the carpet. A negligent misrepresentation is commit where a statement is made by one party to another without care or reasonable grounds for believing that the statement is true. Dorris (the carpet seller) also commit the negligent misrepresentation as Jordan discovered that there were variations in the colour and pattern.
  • Jordan is entitled to rescind the contract and claim damages. The damages that are awarded are not based on contractual principles but the damages available in the tort of deceit. There is thus no requirement that the damages are foreseeable.


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