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Friday, 22 July 2016

Lawgistics: Consumer advice services giving false expectations to car buyers - Car Dealer Magazine

Car Dealer Magazine has an interview with Nina Bowkis of Lawgistics about consumer disputes over cars. She says that many consumers are consulting Citizen's Advice, where they receive "assistend information" rather than real advice - and if the consumer reports that the car has a fault, the chances are that they will be informed of their right to reject even if there is no proof that the fault exists.

Dealers are also being advised to agree to mediation, when it is not a requirement unless their trade association enforces it. Lawgistics say that ombudsmen are telling dealers that they have to accept mediation when this might not be the case at all. (The proliferation of ombudsman services is not an unalloyed good thing - ed.) Ms Bowkis says she personally prefers to go to court, where the judge will consider the case on its merits and with a close eye on the law - whereas a mediator might feel more sympathy for the consumer. Under the Consumer Rights Act, fewer cases are going to court, and many are being settled by what actually amounts to informal mediation - agreement between the dealer and the consumer - before they go too far, which is as it should be.

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