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Online Shopping UK - Know Your Rights

Online Shopping UK - Know Your Rights

With online shopping UK figures showing a dramatic recovery from the dotcom crash of 2000, it is important for consumers to know their rights when shopping online.

It is important to remember that when you are buying online, you have the same rights as when you are buying in a shop. So if the goods are faulty, are not of satisfactory quality, do not match their description, or simply do not arrive then you still have legal protection.

If the seller is based in another European Union country, you may have the same or similar rights as in the UK. On the other hand, if the seller is based outside the European Union, your rights will depend on that country's legislation.

Bank Card Protection

In addition, purchases made with Bank cards are protected by UK law wherever you buy goods from. If something goes wrong, it is quicker to go straight to the merchant, but if there is no redress you should contact your Bank or credit card issuer. Therefore, it is important to have a contact number and postal address for the retailer. When you make a purchase, you should also print out the confirmation screen as a receipt and make sure you know the value of the purchase in sterling if buying in a foreign currency.

Buying From Abroad

The Office of Fair Trading warns consumers to be aware of different standards between countries especially electrical goods. You should also ensure that the guarantee is valid in the UK.

Check also for possible hidden costs such as VAT, custom duties, delivery charges, postage and packaging. And don't assume that an internet company is in the UK just because its web address has 'UK' in it.

Consumer Bodies

If you don't receive adequate redress from the merchant or Bank card issuer, you can contact relevant consumer bodies.

If false marketing statements are made, contact the Advertising Standards Authority, Trading Standards, or a solicitor can be seen as a last resort.

So if you know your rights, online shopping in the UK can be as safe as popping into the corner shop.

(C) John Lynch

About the author:

(To shop online and earn discounts every time you buy from 860 + top UK retail stores go to: http://www.myaffiliateprogram.com/u/gp/t.asp?id2984 Save up to 25%. Free to join and get £2.50 put into your account to start.)

Written by: John Lynch

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