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Repair, replace, or refund: Your guide to the ‘three Rs’

What to do if a customer demands a repair, replacement, or refund.

The Consumer Protection Act enshrines consumers’ right to fair value, good quality, and safety – and so, when a product or service fails to deliver on these criteria, they may seek recourse. How do you, as a workshop owner, know when it is sufficient to repair goods that have proved defective within six months of purchase, or when these must be replaced or even refunded?

If your customer wishes to replace the goods, the ‘switch’ must take place on a like for like basis – in other words, you need to provide a substitute that is the same in terms of price and quality as the original product at the time of purchase.

If a refund is requested, you have the right to factor in any usage and restoration costs that may apply.

Of course, as the saying goes, prevention is always better than cure. Workshop owners are therefore reminded to put all agreements with customers in writing and to abide by the correct operating procedures and provide the appropriate documentation at all times, making sure they are signed by both parties. This ensures that you are protected, should there be a claim against your workmanship, goods, or service.