Consumer Protection Act

• You know the scene: your waiter brings you your meal at a restaurant, but it’s only half the size of the advertised picture.
• Or your toaster dies an unexpected, flaming death on day 101 of your 100-day-guarantee.
• Or a telemarketer calls you up halfway through lunch and you find yourself signing up for an insurance policy between mouthfuls.
Yes, it’s a dangerous world for consumers. But that’s all about to change.

On March 31, the new Consumer Protection Act (CPA) comes into play.

• It’s all about you in the new act, especially when it comes to returning goods or asking for refunds.
• Consumers will now have up to six months to return faulty or unsafe goods.
• You will have a choice between the supplier repairing or replacing these, or refunding you in full.
• If the product fails again within the next three months, the supplier is once again obliged to replace it or refund you.
• But remember, this applies only to the general wear and tear of your appliances, not gross negligence on your part.
• The supplier may charge you a small amount to repackage the product.

• Ordering online? Goods will have to be delivered at an agreed date, time and place. If not, you will be free to accept or cancel the agreement – it’s your choice.
• Companies are also obliged to deliver goods that match the sample or description of the product. You have the right to examine your purchases before accepting them, and reject them if you’re not happy.
• If you didn’t get a chance to examine the product and are unhappy with it, it can be returned at the supplier’s expense.

• As of March 31, companies will not be allowed to charge you an exorbitant R5 or R10 to enter an SMS or MMS competition, but will have to stick to the usual network rates.

• Sending your laptop in for repairs? Getting that leaky roof fixed?
• As of March 31, companies have to provide you with an estimate for the work – which you must approve – and cannot charge you more than that estimate.
• If more work is required above and beyond the estimate, they first have to get the go-ahead from you.
• Companies also can’t charge you for preparing their quote, unless you’ve agreed to that.

• Gone are the dreaded telemarketer calls and junk mail flyers. At least in theory.
• According to the new act, salespeople cannot bombard you with calls and leaflets at certain times of the day and certain days of the year.
• You can also put your name on a blocking registry to one-up the telemarketers before they even begin to dial. How exactly this will be enforced, however, is still anybody’s guess.

• Impulse buyers, this one’s for you.
• According to this clause, you will have five business days to change your mind about that mid-life-crisis Harley or the seaside cottage you fell in love with.
• Notify the company in writing, and they’ll have 15 days to pay you back in full. If goods have already been delivered to you, you’ll have to return them before you get your money back.
• Note that this applies only where you bought in response to direct marketing, which is when things are advertised to you directly, in person, in the mail, or electronically.

• Ever been billed for that gym or cellphone contract you thought had expired?
• Thanks to the new act, automatic contract renewals will be no more. Companies will have to contact you – in writing – between 40 and 80 business days before your contract expires. They have to give you the option to continue your contract, change its terms or cancel it.
• Note that the contract will continue on a month-to-month basis until you make your choice.
• You will also be able to cancel contracts at any time. No more waiting for the full 24 months to end. If you’re unhappy, give the company 20 days’ notice – in writing – and you’re home free.
• And while you won’t have to pay the full value of the contract, keep in mind that you still have to pay anything you owe the company up to the date of cancellation.
• The company might also charge you a cancellation fee, possibly no more than 10 percent of the amounts still owed.

• Voetstoots – especially in the car industry – means buying it as you see it. Don’t go complaining to the seller when your 1962 skedonk no longer gets you from A to B. What you see is what you get. But not anymore.
• According to Broekmann, “The CPA specifically identifies the consumer’s rights to good-quality products, in good working order, free of any substantial defects, and fit for their purpose.”
• From March 31, suppliers will have to let you know of all defects – both obvious and hidden – of your purchase, and you have to agree to buying the product in that condition.

• This one is still on you. Cancel a booking or reservation, and the supplier is entitled to charge you a “reasonable” cancellation fee. The “reasonableness” depends on how early you cancel and if the supplier can fill your now-empty spot.
• If, however, the booking is canceled because of the death or hospitalization of the person who made the booking, no cancellation fee can be charged.

*source The Star

Report ID: 874
Crime Category: Other
Province: Nationwide
City/Town: Nationwide
Suburb: N/A
Address: All over South Africa
Crime Date/Time: 11 Feb 2011, 00:02 AM
Reported By: Username977
Reported Date: 11 Feb 2011, 13:02 PM
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Join the conversation

  • Mike Floren 23 Jun 2014, 03:18 PM

    Please call me icw a report you have on line Thanks Mike Florens

  • cindy19 29 Nov 2013, 01:41 PM

    BEWARE OF LAVENDER MISCHIEF Take your money for services not rendered and then claim legal problems for not being able to deliver and wont refund either. Disgusting how companies take people for a ride. This was a GROUPON VOUCHER

  • miso 2 Jan 2013, 01:57 PM

    Would it not be against the act to ask prices that do not exist? Shops are still quoting R00.99 yet there is no such thing as a 1c any more, therefore one can argue that the price does not exist. Yes they round your final amount due to a .95 cents but included in that are allot of 99cents, this does not seem fair.

  • muhammed 29 Oct 2012, 01:01 PM


  • Brian11 15 Feb 2012, 09:16 AM

    I just got the following sms that I did not opt into. Get a Blackberry additional phone Internet airtime EVERY MONTH on contract. Click to be called or reply STOP to 0734051805 Here are all of their details from Domain: Registrar UniForum S.A. registrant phone 0424551000 registrant fax 0865339441 Please could you stop these spamming scammers.

  • Michele3 29 Dec 2011, 05:13 PM

    Beware of False / Unlawful Contract via Groupon @ De Luigi's in Camps Bay. Fine print Valid for 3 months (excludes 24December 2011, 31 December 2011 and 14 February 2012), Groupon redeemable for 2 pizzas or 2 pastas or one of each, Booking essential and subjectto availability: 021 438 6188, Excludes Spaghetti Frutti di Mare pasta and Prosciutto pizza, Groupon issued and valid once deal closes However when you try book they will ask you if you have a coupon, upon saying yes they will tell you the restaurants fully booked. So we tried to phone again, were asked if we had coupon, we said no and then all of a sudden we can book. Really bad promotion on De Luigi's behalf and bad management on Groupons behalf for allowing such false unlawful promoting. No where in the contract did it stipulate limited coupons per day... the owner simply sold above his means instead of putting a limit on to how many he wanted to sell. He got greedy and now his turning customers away because he wants full price paying customers too (like 90 bux a pizza). The sad and unfortunate thing, is he went via Groupon to promote himself and De Luigi's restaurant...all he is going to achieve are unhappy customers whom won't return, won't recommend them to their family and friends which will put his business back at square one.... lacking business through poor client management.

  • Dave19 21 Nov 2011, 02:59 PM

    Beware of a company offering savings on your phone bills. these sharks are converting people to a supreme call which is offered for free by telkom. they inturn charge R200/month for 36 month (R7200)!!!!! they promise a 27% saving (with a 20% variance) haha nice try! you have been out for Pro Save Consulting....

  • jo-anne3 20 Sep 2011, 01:38 PM

    where can i report a company who phoned me regarding telemarketing?? im sick and tired of people phoning me trying to sell products.

  • andre10 11 Aug 2011, 11:56 AM

    Alliance Stationary charge us a unreasonable high price for till rolls. Charged us R10.50 per roll were we can get the till rolls for R 6.00 per roll, Ribbons R97 were we pay R25 per ribbon. We try to return the whole order but they refuse to collect and refund our money. Charged us for 80 rolls only received 50. They were going to credit us on 30 rolls. A week later we still waiting for a refund. We try to get hold of the company by phoning landline, cellphone and by email. No response at all. Alliance stationery enterprises ck 2006/13993/23 Vat: 4590230605 Address: 24 Cardiff Rd, Simonstown, 7975 Tel (021) 7864904 Andre

  • Report A Crime 14 Apr 2011, 03:33 PM

    Very coool!

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