consumer rights

Know Consumer Rights to Solve Purchase-related Issues

Online Legal India LogoBy Online Legal India Published On 01 Jan 2024 Updated On 14 Feb 2024 Category Consumer Complaint

Any person who has purchased anything or taken a service can file a complaint against the seller or the service provider if it does not meet the promised quality. The consumer has to file it to the consumer court. Along with individuals, a complaint can be filed by organizations, companies, corporations, or groups that have purchased something but received a wrong, tampered with, or damaged item. A wrong service provider can also get complaints from their consumers. Before complaining, you have to learn the consumer rights and responsibilities. Then, you will have a clear idea when you can go for a consumer complaint.

It is important to keep in mind that a consumer can complain within two years of purchasing any product or accepting any service. In addition, you have to submit proof of purchase, such as the purchasing invoice, related bills, etc.

Let’s learn some more specific details about the person who files a grievance in Consumer Court to solution to their discrepancy in product or service.

Who is a consumer?

A person or a group of people who purchase goods or services for personal, residual, social, or any other purposes or commercial use are called consumers. They can complain to the Consumer Court of India to get legal solutions for replacement money back, or compensation. If the complaint is valid, they will get the solutions as per the rules of the consumer court.

Registering a Complaint

Usually, you can lodge a complaint with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs for specific fees. As soon as you do it, you will get a service request number to check the status of your complaint.

A lot of complaints remain unsolved in the minds of the users, as they cannot follow the procedure or they consider that the process is critical. If you face this type of issue, you can contact Online Legal India to get all types of legal solutions regarding consumer issues. A host of dedicated legal experts will help you solve the complaints.

  • Legal Heirs

If any consumer is dead before lodging a complaint or after complaining about the solution of the court, the heirs of the consumer would be the legal heirs of the deceased consumer.

  • Power of attorney

If a consumer is not capable of appearing in court, they can send an authorized person to act on behalf of the person by granting the power of attorney.

  • Competent Authority

Some government bodies and regularity authorities, such as the Telecom Regularity Authority of India, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, and the Securities and Exchange Board of India, can file complaints in the consumer court if they doubt that any company has violated the Consumer Protection Act.

What are the Consumer Rights and Responsibilities?

To ensure consumers get the right services or products, the Consumer Protection Act of 2019 has given some rights to consumers. At the same time, they also have to maintain some responsibilities. If they do not follow the responsibilities towards the sellers or service providers, they might not be eligible to get the penalty or compensation. Here, consumer rights and responsibilities are mentioned in short.

Consumer Rights explained:

  • Right to safety:

This is the right of consumers against the marketing of goods and services that could be hazardous to life, family members, or property. The service or goods must meet the instant requirement as well as the requirement in the long run.

During the purchase, either offline or online, the consumers have the right to insist the seller show quality products as well as the guarantee of the product or service they are about to get. They have the right to purchase certified or quality-marked products such as AGMARK, ISI, ISO, etc.

  • Rights to choose

A customer can ask to get a lot of options from the sellers to choose the most desired things that they like. They also have the right to choose the best product at an affordable cost. If any seller does not want to show more products from which the consumer can choose, they may come under the Consumer Protection Act and they can raise a consumer complaint against the seller. In the case of services, the service providers must inform the consumer of all options and related facilities so that they can choose the most suitable options from them. They have the right to justify the type of product or service from the options and the price that is suitable for them. They have the right to get any product or service at a competitive price.

  • Right to be informed

The sellers have to inform them of the quality, purity, quantity, potency, and standard, along with the price of all products or goods. All these are essential to preventing unfair trade practices against consumers. The consumer has the right to get all the details of the product or service so that they can make a choice or decide on the product. This is one of the fundamental duties of sellers: to inform consumers. It is their right. They cannot bring customers to the sales funnel to buy any particular product that the consumer is not willing to buy.

  • Right-to-consumer education

The customers must get adequate knowledge in support of the product or service they have purchased. Otherwise, they can handle the product wrongly and get damaged. If someone purchases a smart refrigerator, they must be informed all about its general details as well as its technical and operational details. In short, they have to train the users, or consumers, so that they can easily handle it from day one. If they have any issues handling the gadget, the sellers have to inform them as long as the consumer wants it.

  • Right to be heard

This clause indicates that the sellers have to listen to consumers’ interests and complaints through appropriate forums. Thus, it should confirm consumers’ welfare. The consumers should approach noncommercial and non-political consumer organizations that can be representable and connected to government authorities. You can upload your concern through the Ministry of Corporate Affairs portal.

  • Right to Seek Redressal

The right to Seek Redressal is a great way to prevent unscrupulous exploitation of consumers. It includes raising consumer complaints as well as its settlement. The consumer must show their grievance legally, and the sellers or service providers have to solve it by following the proper Consumer Act.

The sellers cannot show any threat or fear for life or any kind of intimidation to withdraw the complaint or accept the product they have sold.

The consumers can also seek support from the consumer organizations in seeking redress for their grievances.

These days, markets are globalized. Consumers and manufacturers may not have a direct link. They are getting distant. Hence, the consumers must get a strong redressal system through the Consumer Protection Act from the sellers. The grievances of the consumers are filed under the consumer forum or consumer courts. The consumer may get support from district, state, and national levels to get easy and cost-effective solutions to consumer grievances.

What are the 3 levels of Commissions?

  1. District commission
  2. State commission
  3. National Commission

Let’s learn what the activities of these commissions are:

  • District commission

District commissions will handle all complaints about the products or services, the value of which does not exceed Rs. 50 lakhs.

  • State commission

This court entertains the consumer complaints with the product or service value is more than 50 lakhs but less than 2 crores INR.

  • National Commission

National commission solves consumer complaints of the product or service value exceeding the value of 2 crore rupees.

The consumer forum or consumer court can order the company to solve the following issues, and it takes action if the company is at fault.

  • To correct the faults or deficiencies of the product or faults of the service
  • To repair the defects perceived free of cost
  • Replace the product if it is not possible to repair (might be superior, not inferior)
  • Issue a full refund for the product and what it cost
  • Pay compensation for damages/inconveniences/costs/time expenditure, or harassment
  • Withdraw the sale of the product if the entire batch is faulty
  • Not to repeal any unfair trade or restrictive trade practice
  • Public a corrective advertisement of the product or service and praying apology

The Consumer Protection Act, of 2019 confirms expanded protection to consumers as well as sellers and service providers. Online sales have increased many times with the progress of time, the updated version of the previous act of 1986. It is very essential for the time being.

Consumer responsibilities

Consumer Protection Act does not only highlight the issues of the customers, it also throws them in some responsibilities. If the customers do not follow those rules and responsibilities, the sellers may nullify the complaint. What are the responsibilities a customer should have?

  • Be Critically Aware of the product

Consumers must be aware of the price, product quality, quantity, and ratio of the price of the products. They also have to be aware of the fact whether the product is quality-certified or not.

  • Be Involved

You have to be responsible that you have done a fair trade. That means, you should have genuine invoices with GST bills or as the case may be. If you are a passive customer, you have a high possibility of being exploited.

  • Be Organized

You also have the responsibility to stretch your hands to support the sellers. Whatever queries or involvement they ask from you, you should provide it.

  • Practice Sustainable Consumption

You must be aware of the impact of product or service consumption that impacts on other citizens. That means, your consumption must not hamper the livelihood or affect others who are in the less powerful groups. You must consume based on needs- not on wants.

  • Be responsible for the environment

Every consumer must have the responsibility to understand the consequences of the environment during or after consumption. They should recognize the individual, group, or social responsibilities to conserve natural or artificial resources. They must consider the existence and safety of the future generation.

Hence, you have learned the consumer rights, consumer responsibilities and the people who can go for consumer complaints in short. If you face any issue related to the usage of any product or service, you have the right to complain. You can can contact Online Legal India to get a faster solution. What are you waiting contact us and learn more!


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