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How car dealers can navigate the legal minefield in 2015

Despite their obvious importance to you and your business, you may be getting a little tired of hearing the letters F, C, and A, especially if your business is already fully compliant. But what about non-FCA regulation changes on the horizon? We asked a selection of legal experts for their advice on regulatory developments in the year ahead:


Graham Jones, director, LawdataGraham Jones, director, Lawdata

Holiday pay

Two court decisions in 2014 have meant that holiday pay should now be based on average pay, including commission and/or compulsory overtime, which will inevitably increase staffing costs.

Failure to correctly calculate holiday pay could lead to employment tribunal claims for underpayment.

The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013

The distance-selling period of cancellation has been extended to 14 days from the date of handover and up to 12 months if the required information, such as a cancellation form, is not provided to the customer.

They also create a requirement for specific information to be provided at point of sale, whether that’s within the dealership, off premises, or a distance sale. Failure to provide this information may allow a customer to walk away from a deal without penalty, while failure to provide information required for an off-premises contract could result in prosecution.

Dealers need to understand what information they need to provide, and ensure they have clear processes so that sales executives know exactly what they need to do.

The Consumer Rights Bill

The Consumer Rights Bill is currently being considered by the House of Lords and is expected to come into force in October 2015.

Proposals (which are likely to become law) include a short term (30 day) right to reject goods that do not conform to the contract. That period will be extended by the length of time taken to carry out any repairs necessary within those 30 days.

Consumers may alternatively require a repair or replacement, if this cannot be agreed or the first attempt is not successful then the customer may be entitled to a price reduction or a final right to reject. However, this final right to reject can be subject to a deduction for the use the consumer has made of the goods.

Dealers will need to fully understand the revised obligations, it will be essential to get to the bottom of any issues on the first occasion as there may be just one opportunity to repair.

>> The Consumer Protection (Amendment) Regulations 2014 -- Matthew Wilmot, Dentons

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