Consumers Rights - Buying Goods

When you buy goods, you enter into a contract with the shop or retailer who sells them to you. The retailer agrees to provide a product or service to you for a certain price. Under consumer law, an item must be:

  • Of merchantable quality – it must be of a reasonable and acceptable standard
  • Fit for the purpose intended – it must be fit for the purpose it was  bought for
  • As described – it must match the description given verbally or in an advertisement. False or exaggerated claims must not be made by the retailer

There is no obligation on the shop to give you a receipt for the goods you buy. However, you should always ask for one.

When you buy goods, you are entitled to be dealt with fairly by the salesperson or trader - they should act in good faith, not mislead you about the product or service and avoid using harassment, coercion or undue influence.

Receipts

There is no obligation on the shop to give you a receipt for the goods you buy. However, you should always ask for one. Receipts are an important and easy way to prove you bought a product in a particular store.

Even if you lose your receipt, your consumer rights still apply when returning faulty goods. All you need is proof of purchase, which doesn’t necessarily need to be a receipt. 

Proof of purchase could be:

  • A credit or debit card statement
  • An invoice
  • A cheque book stub
  • If the product is own-brand and has clearly come from the retailer in question this may be accepted as proof of purchase

Find out more about your rights when returning goods if things go wrong.

If you simply change your mind about an item and wish to return it, you do not have any rights under consumer law. Some shops may accept returns and give you a refund, exchange or credit note within a certain time period. This is a good will gesture on the part of the shop, but is not a legal requirement. Find out more information about changing your mind

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