Consumer law breached by 57 businesses

 

MORE THAN 50 retail businesses were found to have breached consumer legislation in the first half of the year, the vast majority for failing to display accurate prices, according to the National Consumer Agency.

The agency yesterday published details of 57 enforcement actions taken against businesses in the grocery, hardware, pub and motor sectors.

The list includes Killarney Crystal, which was forced to recall one of its products that did not comply with the legal regulations on hallmarking. The company gave the agency an undertaking that it would comply with the general prohibition on misleading commercial practices.

Northside Automotives, owned by Elgarbridge Ltd, also gave an undertaking under the Consumer Protection Act and undertook to compensate a customer. This followed an investigation by the agency into a discrepancy in the odometer reading of a car sold by the north Dublin garage.

The agency also sought and obtained a court order against Favourite Motors, Ballysimon Road, Limerick, prohibiting the sale of cars with altered or reduced odometer readings.

Twenty compliance notices were issued to businesses who charged customers more than the price displayed. The list includes Dunnes Store in Henry Street, Dublin, Lidl in Finglas and Tesco in Kilcoole, Co Wicklow, and Wicklow town.

Another 32 traders were fined €300 each for breaches of pricing legislation, particularly the requirement to display prices. Joyce’s Supermarket in Knocknacarra, Co Galway, received three fixed payment notices.

NCA chief executive Ann Fitzgerald said the list should serve as a reminder to businesses of the importance of adhering to consumer protection legislation.

“If businesses fail to live up to their obligations, then the NCA will not hesitate to take robust enforcement action.”

She called on consumers to contact the agency on 1890 432 432 if they come across misleading pricing, lack of pricing or any other unfair or misleading activity.