The reverse burden of proof is an integral part of consumer legislation and reinforces your consumer rights.

the-reverse-burden-of-proof-explained

BACKGROUND

I was sold a crock by Evans Halshaw that lasted little more than 11 weeks that did not meet the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

They insisted that they had sold me a perfectly roadworthy car. The facts dictated otherwise and they were trying to shaft me basically.

ACTION – THE REVERSE BURDEN OF PROOF

I rejected the car and applied the reverse burden of proof by requesting documents to prove that the vehicle was sold without faults when I bought it. I also requested documents to evidence that the car was fit for purpose and of satisfactory quality at the point of sale in accordance with the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

If they couldn’t provide that, it’s fair to say that my case would trump theirs in the Small Claims Court.

They obviously insisted that they had everything intact at their end and I simply didn’t believe it. If that was the case, the car would have lasted longer than 11 weeks.

The onus is on the trader to prove that the car was not faulty when it was sold within the first 6 months.

It is up to you to prove it once 6 months has elapsed. This can either be done by an independent report or by doing Google searches for common faults that are evidenced in the public domain.

RESULT

They settled my claim on the back of an independent report that evidenced that the car did not meet the Consumer Rights Act 2015 and was uneconomical to repair. That did not stop the same garage from putting the same car back on the road with a clean MOT for another couple of years, but that story is not mine to tell.

I see problems with part exchanged cars, disputes with warranties where the Consumer Rights Act applies and problems with car repairs virtually every day where traders try to baffle and fob off consumers with legalese jargon rather than try to do the right thing.

Firms need to realise that a seamless and enjoyable customer service experience will encourage customer loyalty. Customers have various platforms to air their grievances and are becoming increasingly savvy about their consumer rights.

You can find out more about how to resolve complaints and motoring disputes in my book.

What are your experiences with car dealerships? Have you been able to apply the reverse burden of proof to resolve a dispute?

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