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Consumer Protection Law

Would you like a qualified Lawyer to assist you with your Consumer Protection Law question today? The new Consumer Protection Act is going to have a huge impact on virtually every business in South Africa. Are you covered? Would you like a qualified Lawyer to assist you with your Consumer Protection Law question today?

Garnishee fraud remains rampant

Despite the Constitutional Court’s landmark ruling on the illegality of certain practices in the administration of garnishee orders – made more than a year ago – activists claim that fee-gouging and fraudulent court orders are continuing unabated, according to Business Day. Lisinda Bailey, one of the applicants in the Western Cape High Court case on garnishee orders that was confirmed by the Constitutional Court, says her life was ruined by the irresponsible granting of credit and subsequent garnishees.

Bond defaulters must be told of rights

Home-owners who default on their bond payments should not despair as they will not lose their property if they pay before it is sold. The Star reports this was the message from Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) acting Judge JG Rautenbach, who said people often threw in the towel when they received an order that they had to repay the outstanding bond, as well as an order declaring that the property may be sold so that the bank could recover its losses.

BMW ordered to repay 'on-the-road' fees

The National Credit Regulator (NCR) has directed BMW to refund its customers for charging them an on-the-road fee on credit agreements, says a TimesLIVE report. The regulator said it was not aware what the fee was for as BMW did not explain when it inquired. The charges ranged from R3 000 to R6 000.

Supreme Court of Appeal ruling gives ASA its teeth back

By Juta and Company (Pty) Ltd Published on Monday, 02 October 2017
Consumer Protection Law Litigation
The SCA has overturned a High Court decision that had essentially rendered the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) toothless. A GroundUp report notes the SCA order was a settlement between the ASA and a company called Herbex, but it’s clear from the terms of the settlement that the ASA is the real winner in this case. The ASA is tasked with self-regulating advertising for the benefit of consumers.

Small Businesses and POPI: Not Crying Wolf This Time?

POPI (the Protection of Personal Information Act) will provide welcome protection for our personal information – our names, ID numbers, addresses, medical histories and so on, but the other side of the coin is that it will expose small businesses in particular to a whole new raft of onerous obligations and risks.

Second hand car dealer ordered to reimburse customer

By Juta and Company (Pty) Ltd Published on Wednesday, 20 September 2017
Consumer Protection Law Motor Vehicles
A Cape Town car dealership has been ordered to refund a woman who bought a second-hand car in late 2015, only to have it break down a few days later. The National Consumer Tribunal found that Hanlie van Lill, of Kuilsriver, must be paid back the R61 450 she paid for her 2001 year model Volkswagen Passat, which broke down four days after she bought it, notes a Fin24 report.

“Please Sir, Can i have some more?” The need for more consumer protection when it comes to food safety

By Ashersons Attorneys | Ryan Lin | Published on Friday, 08 September 2017
Consumer Protection Law Environmental Law
Consumer protection, which includes being given access to a safe and dependable supply of food, is a fundamental requirement of any society. In transforming the South African food landscape, there have been gradual improvements to protect consumers, most notable with the advent of the Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008. However, we still see unfit food products, especially in respect of mislabelled food products, reaching the store shelves.

Shoprite fined R1m for ‘reckless lending’

By Juta and Company (Pty) Ltd Published on Thursday, 07 September 2017
Consumer Protection Law
Shoprite has been fined R1m for failing to assess properly whether consumers could afford its loans, says a Moneyweb report. The company – which had turnover in its last financial year of R141bn – was also ordered to appoint a debt counsellor at its own costs following what the National Credit Regulator (NCR) called ‘reckless lending’.

Banks sued for R60bn over home repossessions

More than 225 applicants, mostly from Gauteng townships, have launched a suit in the Constitutional Court, claiming damages from the big banks for home repossession abuse. A GroundUp report says the applicants are claiming R60bn from the banks for unlawful repossession of homes since the Constitution came into effect in 1994.

Ombud refers pensioner’s Sharemax complaint to court

A pensioner who invested in various property syndication schemes promoted and marketed by Sharemax Investments and Propspec, and was seeking the repayment of R1.54m he invested and lost in these schemes, has had his complaint referred to court. Pieter Taljaard filed eight complaints with the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services (Fais) Ombud in 2012 on the investments, according to a report in The Sunday Indpendent.

Commission told of timeshare tricks and traps

By Juta and Company (Pty) Ltd Published on Tuesday, 25 July 2017
Consumer Protection Law
Consumers locked into contracts ‘for life’, unable to sell timeshare points or give them away to escape spiralling levy costs, and others who alleged exploitation by unscrupulous salespeople, presented their cases to the National Consumer Commission (NCC) in Durban yesterday.

Unclear contract thrown out in claims against estate

By Juta and Company (Pty) Ltd Published on Wednesday, 12 July 2017
Consumer Protection Law
A Durban businessman who died in a hail of bullets while driving a courtesy car from Land Rover has posthumously emerged victorious in a claim against his estate that he is liable for the full value, about R560 000, of the bullet-riddled car, says a News24 report. In a recent judgment, KZN High Court Judge Dhaya Pillay cautioned that contracts – in particular those, as in this case, which were signed on the bonnet of a car – must be clear and uncomplicated and must accord with the law and the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act and not hidden in tiny print.

Infinite timeshare contracts are main complaint

By Juta and Company (Pty) Ltd Published on Wednesday, 12 July 2017
Consumer Protection Law
The perpetuity of timeshare contracts that cannot be cancelled was the dominant complaint at public hearings held yesterday in Cape Town. A Business Day report says the hearings were conducted by the National Consumer Commission (NCC) inquiry into the timeshare or holiday club industry. People complained that their timeshare contracts could potentially last forever and they could not get rid of them long after they stopped enjoying the benefits of timeshare.

NCC hopes for single law for timeshare industry

By Juta and Company (Pty) Ltd Published on Tuesday, 11 July 2017
Consumer Protection Law
The National Consumer Commission (NCC) is hoping that its public hearings into the timeshare industry will give rise to a single law to ‘effectively and comprehensively’ regulate the industry and give consumers the right to participate in the affairs of holiday club schemes. A Business Day report says NCC commissioner Ebrahim Mohamed has appealed to consumers to take part in the public inquiry process, which moves to Cape Town this week.

Your Property Sale Agreement: Be Careful How It’s Worded!

By Ashersons Attorneys Published on Thursday, 06 July 2017
Consumer Protection Law Litigation Property Law
Here’s yet another reminder from our courts on how important it is – if you want to avoid the trials of litigation – for you to have your property sale agreement drawn up professionally.  One thing it must do, as the case in question clearly shows, is record the terms of your agreement precisely and without any room for argument. This High Court case in Phepeng and Another v Estate Late Ame Combrinck and Others revolved around a “bond clause” in a sale agreement. 

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