Ex­tended war­ranties rules of­fer more rights

Kapi-Mana News - - OPINION -

Fol­low­ing sig­nif­i­cant re­forms to con­sumer laws, ex­tended war­ranties are now reg­u­lated un­der the Fair Trad­ing Act.

The changes came into ef­fect on June 17 this year and im­pose new rules upon re­tail­ers sell­ing ex­tended war­ranties.

An ex­tended war­ranty is a prod­uct mar­keted as pro­vid­ing ex­tra con­sumer pro­tec­tion.

Com­monly, ex­tended war­ranties are sold as an ‘‘add on’’ to pur­chases of goods such as elec­tri­cal and elec­tron­ics.

The ex­tended war­ranty gen­er­ally ex­tends the man­u­fac­turer’s war­ranty pe­riod and is ad­di­tional to con­sumer rights un­der the Con­sumer Guar­an­tees Act.

The new rules now mean busi­nesses sell­ing ex­tended war­ranties must pro­vide a writ­ten copy of the ex­tended war­ranty agree­ment to you when you buy the ex­tended war­ranty.

That agree­ment must be easy to read and un­der­stand.

It must also be dated and in­clude all of its terms and con­di­tions, how long it lasts, when it ex­pires, and its to­tal price.

It must also con­tain or be pro­vided along with:

A sum­mary of your rights and reme­dies un­der the Con­sumer Guar­an­tees Act

A com­par­i­son of the Con­sumer Guar­an­tees Act to the rights and pro­tec­tions of­fered by the ex­tended war­ranty

A sum­mary of your rights to can­cel un­der the Fair Trad­ing Act

The war­ran­tor’s name, street ad­dress, tele­phone num­ber and email ad­dress (the war­ran­tor is the com­pany that pro­vides the ex­tended war­rant)

The war­ran­tor must also (where rea­son­ably prac­ti­cal) tell you ver­bally that you have a right to can­cel the agree­ment within five work­ing days of re­ceiv­ing a copy of the ex­tended war­ranty agree­ment, and must ex­plain to you how to can­cel.

You will now be able to can­cel ex­tended war­ranties within five work­ing days of re­ceiv­ing a copy of the ex­tended war­ranty agree­ment, or at any time if the war­ran­tor fails to give you in­for­ma­tion it is re­quired to give by law (un­less the al­leged breach is mi­nor and you are no worse off for not hav­ing that in­for­ma­tion).

To can­cel, you must let the war­ran­tor know in a clear way that you want to can­cel.

This can be done orally or in writ­ing.

Once validly can­celled, you will be en­ti­tled to a full re­fund.

D asks about a con­flict of in­ter­est sit­u­a­tion where she says a rep­re­sen­ta­tive had pre­vi­ously de­clared a con­flict but when the mat­ter came up for dis­cus­sion again, some time later, they took part in the dis­cus­sion with­out declar­ing their con­flict again.

If some­one has a con­flict of in­ter­est they should de­clare that con­flict and with­draw from the dis­cus­sion and de­ci­sion mak­ing.

This con­flict should be de­clared each time the topic comes up for dis­cus­sion.

How­ever, just be­cause some­one might ben­e­fit from a de­ci­sion does not au­to­mat­i­cally cre­ate a con­flict.

The ben­e­fit must be more than for oth­ers in­volved in the de­ci­sion, for ex­am­ple all rep­re­sen­ta­tives can re­main and vote on a mo­tion to in­crease their pay.

They may ap­pear to have a con­flict as they are set­ting their own pay, but in le­gal terms it is not a con­flict.

If it was, then pay in­creases could never be voted on be­cause each rep­re­sen­ta­tive would have the same con­flict.

It would be a con­flict for one person to vote if they were the only one, or one of a few, get­ting an in­crease.

In that case there are oth­ers who can make the de­ci­sion.

If an ac­cu­sa­tion is made about one or more peo­ple on the body then they are en­ti­tled to stay and take part in the de­bate and vote in re­la­tion to the ac­cu­sa­tions.

This ex­cep­tion to the con­flict rule pre­vents a mi­nor­ity rais­ing al­le­ga­tions against every­one else and seiz­ing con­trol by claim­ing the oth­ers have a ‘‘con­flict’’ and there­fore can­not vote.

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