National Consumer Complaints

A Guide for Filing Consumer Complaints in National Consumer Forum

Online Legal India LogoBy Online Legal India Published On 12 Sep 2022 Updated On 13 Sep 2022 Category Consumer Complaint

The Customer Protection Act of 1986 gives you, as a consumer, a number of rights. 

You could file a Consumer Complaint to get legal remedies if a vendor sold you a faulty item or a service provider gave you poor assistance. A legal complaint made to the proper consumer forum against a seller or service provider is known as a "consumer complaint".  A complaint is filed when a vendor or service provider refuses to fix the issue despite receiving a legal notification.

The complaint contains information & supporting documentation describing the defective item or service and your requests for restitution and redress. Consumer courts in India are recognised for offering prompt and efficient legal assistance since they are distinct from other courts and founded specifically to provide justice to consumers.

Grounds for Filing a Consumer Complaint

The grounds for filing a national consumer complaint are stated below:

Unfair Trade Practices
 

The ultimate objective of all businesses is to maximise profits. However, using unethical tactics like deceiving clients, mispricing merchandise, & other misconducts still happens in the market. The phrase "unfair trade practice" is broad and includes instances of carelessness when municipal officials failed to post a warning sign while the road was still being built.

Additionally, a private contractor who failed to cover a manhole and caused an accident was found guilty of unfair trade practices. Therefore, the consumer has the right to register a complaint before the appropriate forum if any type of unfair commercial conduct is engaged in any transaction.

Food Adulteration
 

The Indian Penal Code considers mixing food with other ingredients to lower the quality and boost profit an unfair business activity. Some instances of the same include blending ghee with salt with sawdust.

In the category of unfair consumer behaviours is even pharmaceutical adulteration. Both life and consumerism are at risk from adulteration. Because of this, customers should constantly report food adulteration.

Weights and measurements in brief
 

A typical general store usually defrauds its customers by weighing things less heavily than they need to. The scale will read one kilogram, but the product will actually weigh about 800 grams. These types of misconduct are thought to pose a major danger to consumer interests.

Erroneous information
 

Everything is available online in this age of quick technology. One drawback of buying things online is that sellers frequently try to deceive customers by giving them misleading information. The scope of consumer protection legislation is so broad that it even includes internet fraud.

Failing to keep promises
 

If the business has committed, it must assure that it will fulfil it. Some promises seem wonderful, but if they can't be kept, it will result in a lot of complaints, mistrust, and customers leaving to other firms.

Inadequate client service
 

Poor customer service occurs when employees fail to communicate with clients effectively, keep them waiting for an extended period, and fail to address problems. 

Sometimes agents are unable to resolve straightforward problems or provide straightforward answers. Customers will begin to complain in droves if they are unable to resolve their problems.

Advantages of Filing for a Consumer Complaint
 

  • Complete reimbursement of your payment.
  • It will be fixed if the items have a flaw or the service isn't up to par.
  • Replacement for the faulty item.
  • Reimbursement for each and every expense related to bringing the lawsuit to court.
  • Payment for any pain or loss (including mental agony).
  • The vendor can be told to stop using unfair trading tactics.
  • The national consumer complaint may be brought in the District or State where the seller lives or operates their company, as well as in the sale's location or the service's provision.
  • If the transaction took place online, the complaint should be lodged at the location specified on the seller's website in terms of service for handling disputes.

Basic Rights of a Consumer under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986
 

1) The right to be protected from unfair trade practices.

2) The right to be knowledgeable about the services or goods.

3) The right to be certain that the services or goods will be of the required quality.

4) The right to be heard in the event of a violation of the right to consumption.

5) The right to seek remedy in the event of injury.

6) The right to information as a consumer.

If a customer's basic rights are violated, it is the consumer's obligation to submit a consumer complaint.

Who can File a Consumer Complaint?
 

You can submit a National Consumer Complaint under the Consumer Protection Act if you are:-

  • A consumer is an individual who buys products or receives services for personal consumption (but not for resale or retail purposes).
  • Any recognised volunteer group that acts on consumers' behalf (e.g. The Consumer Guidance Society of India).
  • A group of consumers who hold the same interest.
  • Those who are the legal successors of a deceased customer.
  • A consumer's relatives
  • In the case of a minor, the consumer's legal guardian.

The procedure for Filing a Complaint National Consumer Forum
 

The procedures for filing a consumer complaint in National Consumer Forum are discussed below:-

  • If the Consumer falls within the pecuniary jurisdiction, he or she may register a complaint immediately with the SCDRC or file an appeal within 30 days of the order's issuance.
  • The court fee for registering a case with the NCDRC is Rs 5,000, and the demand draught should be made out to The Registrar, National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission.
  • There is no charge for submitting an appeal with the National or State Commission.

Send a notice in written format
 

The first step is to write a letter to the seller or manufacturer outlining the issue and why you are dissatisfied with the products or services.

What your notification should include:

You should not, in the notice-

Claim above Rs. 10,000, it is strongly advised that you contact a lawyer & deliver the notification on official letterhead through the lawyer. This will show the fraudster that you intend to pursue legal action.

Look for the opposite party to reply
 

After you deliver the legal notice, the corporation will likely reply to your complaint. Some may give you a reasonable wage. You must know what appropriate remuneration is satisfactory to you at this point. Asking a large sum of money as compensation will get you nowhere since the courts would not entertain it. You can contact the national consumer forum if you do not receive a response within the specified time frame, which is normally fifteen days.

Select the appropriate forum
 

You can contact the relevant consumer forum/commission, such as the District Forum, State Commission, or National Commission, based on the value of the products or services you purchased or the compensation you demand. You can file the complaint yourself or employ a lawyer to present you before the forum/board. The duration of the proceedings might range from 6 to 18 months.

Submit a Written Complaint
 

Each forum has a certain structure that you must follow when posting a written complaint. Attach all necessary documents supporting your complaint, such as invoices, receipts, delivery challans, written communication (including emails and SMS), and so on. It is critical to produce the legal notice that you served on the vendor or service provider so that the court is persuaded that you attempted to address the disagreement outside of court.

Court Cost for Consumer Complaint
 

A court cost is required to file a national consumer complaint:

If the lawsuit is determined in your favour, the Court will order the seller to reimburse you for all of your legal expenses, including court and lawyer fees.

Conclusion
 

A customer who is dissatisfied with the violation of his or her consumer rights can file a consumer complaint both online and offline. To address consumer complaints, the Consumer Affairs Department has created an internet platform named INGRAM (Integrated Grievance Address Mechanism). In detail, this article will explain how to track consumer complaints online.


Share With :