Information is available from the Trading Standards Institute to help consumers. Please note the county council is not responsible for this information.
In the guide
This guidance is for England, Scotland & Wales
In most cases, you will be satisfied with the goods, services or digital content supplied by a trader but sometimes things go wrong and you want to complain.
You can complain in person or by telephone but make sure that you follow this up with an email or letter to confirm the details of your complaint.
You may schedule a call from the trader to you, use an online contact form or use web chat as a way to report a complaint. This is fine but make sure your complaint is confirmed in writing.
To achieve the best possible outcome, consider the following points when writing to the trader:
If you are unsure about what to write, then use the following templates (attached in Word format). They are written in a letter format but can easily be adapted to use as emails. Where you are given a choice of phrase or words to use, make sure you use the correct ones.
If you want to know what your legal rights are and which remedies you are entitled to the other consumer guides on this website provide detailed information. Some of them are referred to explicitly in the 'top tips' section of the templates.
Goods: price reduction or final right to reject
Goods: repair or replacement
Services: carried out within a reasonable time
Services: legally binding information
Services: price reduction
Services: reasonable price to be paid
Services: repeat performance
Digital content: damage caused to device or other digital content
Digital content: price reduction
Digital content: right to supply (refund)
Digital content: repair or replacement
Off-premises sale: cancellation
Returning goods bought at a distance
Right to redress: right to damages
Right to redress: right to a discount
Right to redress: unwinding the contract
Building work repairs
Building work delays
Repairs to faulty double glazing
Flights: compensation for a delayed flight
Flights: compensation for a cancelled flight
Flights: compensation for denied boarding
Flights: reimbursement for being downgraded
Refund for faulty car
Repairs to faulty car
Unsatisfactory car repairs
Holding a finance company equally liable in a dispute with a trader
Asking a trader to consider a joint expert report
Letter before court action
Last reviewed / updated: November 2017
This information is intended for guidance; only the courts can give an authoritative interpretation of the law.
The guide's 'Key legislation' links may only show the original version of the legislation, although some amending legislation is linked to separately where it is directly related to the content of a guide. Information on amendments to UK legislation can be found on each link's 'More Resources' tab; amendments to EU legislation are usually incorporated into the text.
For further information please contact the Citizens Advice consumer service, which provides free, confidential and impartial advice on consumer issues. Visit the Citizens Advice website or call the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 03454 040506.
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The county council is not responsible for this information.