It is better to talk to us before you spend money on products, labelling, offers, promotions and marketing.
Unfair trading and pricing and the law
There are a number of different laws covering the offering and supply of goods and services.
Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (CPRs)
The CPRs set down a general duty on businesses not to trade unfairly when dealing with consumers. A business is trading unfairly if -
- its conduct falls below a level which may be expected towards consumers
- it gives false information to or deceives customers, or fails to give important information about a product
- it uses aggressive sales techniques that use harassment, coercion or undue influence
- it uses one of 31 banned specific unfair practices
The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 also cover the pricing of goods.
They prohibit traders from giving false or misleading information, or omitting material information, about price or the manner of calculation of the price for a product, where this causes or is likely to cause the average consumer to take a transactional decision he would not otherwise have taken.
In many cases, a different transactional decision is likely to mean a decision whether or not to buy a product, but it could include other decisions taken about transactions.
Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations 2008 (BPRs)
This regulation prohibits misleading business-to-business advertising. It also controls when comparative advertisements (which is any advertisement which identifies a competitor or a competitor’s product) are permitted.
Visit the Business Companion website for guidance on Business to Business Marketing (opens in a new window)
There are other specific laws, for example covering -
Unfair trading practices inspections and investigations
We check for unfair practices as part of a business inspection. We also investigate complaints from consumers about unfair practices. We do not usually give notice of an investigation.
Find out more about trading standards inspections and other visits
Where practices or conditions are not satisfactory, we may be able to resolve the matter by providing advice and guidance. As far as the law allows, we will take account of the circumstances of the case and the attitude of the operator when considering action unless immediate enforcement action is necessary.
Find out more about enforcement measures
Trading Standards Advice
Tel: public enquiries - 01482 300 300 or business enquiries - 01482 300 301
Text phone: 01482 300 349
Fax: 01482 615 572
We are open Monday to Thursday 9am to 5pm, and Friday 9am to 4.30pm. Please note the trading standards office is not open to the public. If you have an enquiry please make this to trading standards by telephone, text phone, email or post.