Does the Codification of Consumer Law Improve the Ability of Consumers to Enforce Their Rights? – A UK-Perspective
Forthcoming in Consumer Rights and Consumer Behaviour, edited by B.Heiderhoff and R.Schulze
17 Pages Posted: 8 Nov 2015
Date Written: June 22, 2015
Behavioural economics is shedding much-needed new light on how consumer law and policy could be re-shaped to reflect more accurately the way consumers really behave, rather than how they ought to behave on the basis of the economic model of the rational consumer. This contribution considers what insights behavioural economics might offer for how consumers respond when they encounter a post-purchase problem, such as faulty goods, inadequate services, or unfair contract terms. In particular, the focus will be on whether the design and presentation of the law itself could have an effect on how consumers react when they are faced with a problem post-purchase. The context for this is the recent experience in the United Kingdom, where aspects of consumer law have recently been consolidated into a new Consumer Rights Act 2015 (“CRA”).This raises the question whether the way consumer legislation is designed could influence the way consumers respond. Although the perspective in this paper is influenced primarily by the reform developments in the UK, it should be of wider interest as several European jurisdictions are considering whether to adopt or maintain separate consumer codes.
Keywords: Consumer Law, Codification, Consumer Rights Act, Behavioural Economics
JEL Classification: K12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation