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Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013

31 October 2018
    The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 (the regulations) came into force on 13 June 2014. They regulate most contracts made between a 'trader' and a 'consumer'.
  • The regulations are likely to apply to a wide range of contracts made between solicitors (as traders) and their clients (as consumers). Whether they apply will depend on the nature of the client and the circumstances in which the contract was made.
  • For contracts entered into on or after 13 June 2014, the regulations supersede two previous sets of regulations:
    • The Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000
    • The Cancellation of Contracts made in a Consumer's Home or Place of Work etc Regulations 2008

This practice note explains when the regulations will apply to conracts between solicitors and their clients, and explains the consequences.

This note covers the key issues for solicitors, but it doesn't cover the whole of the regulations. You should read the regulations to ensure that you comply with the relevant requirements.

Legal status

This practice note is the Law Society's view of good practice in this area. It is not legal advice.

Practice notes are issued by the Law Society for the use and benefit of its members. They represent the Law Society's view of good practice in a particular area. They are not intended to be the only standard of good practice that solicitors can follow. You are not required to follow them, but doing so will make it easier to account to oversight bodies for your actions.

Practice notes are not legal advice, nor do they necessarily provide a defence to complaints of misconduct or of inadequate professional service. While care has been taken to ensure that they are accurate, up to date and useful, the Law Society will not accept any legal liability in relation to them.

For queries or comments on this practice note contact the Law Society's Practice Advice Service.

SRA Principles

There are ten mandatory principles which apply to all those the SRA regulates and to all aspects of practice. The principles can be found in the SRA Handbook.

The SRA Overseas Rules 2013 apply to regulated individuals practising overseas and to responsible authorised bodies.

Terminology

Must - A specific requirement in legislation or of a principle, rule, outcome or other mandatory provision in the SRA Handbook. You must comply, unless there are specific exemptions or defences provided for in relevant legislation or the SRA Handbook.

Should - Outside of a regulatory context, good practice for most situations in the Law Society's view. In the case of the SRA Handbook, an indicative behaviour or other non-mandatory provision (such as may be set out in notes or guidance).

These may not be the only means of complying with legislative or regulatory requirements and there may be situations where the suggested route is not the best possible route to meet the needs of your client. However, if you do not follow the suggested route, you should be able to justify to oversight bodies why the alternative approach you have taken is appropriate, either for your practice, or in the particular retainer.

May - A non-exhaustive list of options for meeting your obligations or running your practice. Which option you choose is determined by the profile of the individual practice, client or retainer. You may be required to justify why this was an appropriate option to oversight bodies.

The Law Society also provides a full glossary of other terms used throughout this practice note

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