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Goods or Services Disputes

Legally reviewed by:
Wyn Legal team

Businesses which are involved in the provision of goods have a duty to ensure the goods are of “satisfactory quality” and “fit for purpose”. Where services are provided by businesses, it is essential that they are delivered with “reasonable care and skill”. 

It is also important that the terms of the contract for the provision of goods or services are complied with by both the buyers and sellers. Where goods or services are not delivered in accordance with the agreement between the parties, it is likely that a goods or services dispute will arise. 

The law operates slightly differently depending on whether a contract is a business to business (“B2B”) goods or services dispute or a business to consumer (“B2C”) goods and services dispute. Our solicitors can assist you in navigating the differences in legal frameworks where you are either claiming or defending a goods or services dispute. 

Consumers who purchase goods or services from businesses or traders who are acting in the course of their trade, profession or business have a wide range of rights and remedies available to them, thanks to a piece of legislation known as the Consumer Rights Act 2015.  Consumers who shop online also have rights and remedies available to them relating to matters such as refunds, cooling off periods and the misdescription of products or services.

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 (“the CRA 2015”) sets out the rights that apply to consumers when they are purchasing goods/products, services and digital content. 

Consumers and traders may use the provisions of the CRA 2015 to either claim or defend their matter. 

For example, in relation to goods, a consumer may claim that the goods were not fit for purpose or of satisfactory quality. It will then be for a business trader to defend their position.

Similarly, in relation to services, a consumer may claim that a service was not delivered with reasonable care and skill. Similarly, it will be for a business trader to defend their position in setting out why the service was delivered with reasonable care and skill.

Where there is a delay in providing goods or services, the starting point is that the contract should be reviewed to understand whether there is a deadline stipulated for the delivery of the goods or services. Where there is no deadline stipulated, the CRA 2015, states that the delivery of goods and services should be delivered within a “reasonable time”

Our solicitors have a special expertise in assisting in the following sectors where goods and services are provided:

  1. The wedding and private events sector – for example where a wedding photographer is accused of failing to deliver suitable images. 
  2. The technology start up and Fintech sector – for example where a tech startup has is accused of failing to provide a service with reasonable care and skill to the end user. 
  3. The building and construction sector – for example, where a construction company is accused of failing to use reasonable care and skill in completing a building extension.
  4. The design and the creative arts sector – for example, where a web developer has been accused of failing to use reasonable care and skill in developing a web application.
  1. Review the contract – Take steps to be clear on what the duties were on the trader to provide the goods and services. Where there is no written contract (which may be the case), go through emails, text messages and WhatsApp messages, to consider what was agreed prior to entering the agreement for the supply of goods and services.
  2. Retain all evidence – Quite often, disputes can take many months (sometimes years) to resolve. As soon as you are aware that there is a potential problem with goods or services, retain the useful documents such as receipts, invoices, images and correspondence between the parties.
  3. Consider communicating with the other party – the most cost effective way in dealing with disputes is to simply open up the lines of communication. Consider engaging constructively with the other party to see whether a solution to the problem can be found. 
  4. Provide reasonable time – It is important to try and give the trader/business reasonable time to remedy the breach.
  5. Document your losses – where you have incurred losses due to goods or services not being fit for purpose or delivered with reasonable care and skill, it is important you document these losses and where possible keep a log of your losses with evidence. This is likely to be essential if you seek to claim compensation.
  1. We can assist both B2B and B2C goods or services disputes. 
  2. From the outset we can advise you as to whether we believe you have a case.
  3. We will engage with your opponent with the view of resolving the dispute before commencing court proceedings.
  4. Where pre-action engagement does not work, we will support you throughout the life cycle of your court claim.
  5. We will also assist you in navigating you through the consumer legal framework.