CAB ‘inundated’ with calls from consumers

Newtownabbey Citizens Advice Bureau manager, Pat Hutchinson. INNT 51-244CON
Newtownabbey Citizens Advice Bureau manager, Pat Hutchinson. INNT 51-244CON

STAFF at Newtownabbey Citizens Advice Bureau have received hundreds of calls over the past few weeks from people asking about their consumer rights with regards to returning sale goods.

CAB District Manager, Pat Hutchinson MBE, revealed that staff at the Dunanney Centre office have been “inundated” with such calls since Christmas.

“Sales goods may be reduced in price because the trader needs to clear stock at the end of the season, because they want to attract customers, or because there are known faults with the goods. As a consumer, the law says that any item you buy from a trader in a sale must be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose and match any description given. If it doesn’t then you are entitled to a repair, a replacement, or a refund,” Mrs Hutchinson explained.

“Traders must also point out any faults with damaged sales goods, for example a missing button on a coat. If this does not happen you are also entitled to a repair, replacement or your money back.

“Things become more problematic if you have simply changed your mind. A trader doesn’t have to do anything in this situation, but some traders do have their own returns policies where you can be offered an exchange or a credit note. More information on these types of returns policies can be found on the back of your receipt or displayed next to the tills.

“Proof of purchase, like a receipt, will be needed to return goods bought in the sales and be aware that some returns policies state that goods which have been opened or the package damaged will not be accepted. Some retailers will also not accept returned goods which could carry infection such as earrings, so remember to check the trader’s terms and conditions if you think you think you may want to return them later,” she added.

For more information about consumer rights log on to the Citizens Advice website - - or call Newtownabbey CAB on 9085 2271 (9am - 4pm each day).