02 March 2016
Unfair terms update from the CMA. Advance payment and cancellation terms in wedding and event venue providers' consumer contracts
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), on behalf of the Consumer Protection Partnership, is issuing an advisory letter to over 100 major wedding and event venue providers across the UK. The letter raises businesses' awareness of the potential for consumer contract terms to be unfair and recommends that they ensure that their terms, and in particular their advance payment and cancellation terms, comply with consumer protection law.
The CMA has also produced a short guide on deposits, advance payments and cancellation charges, and its original guidance for businesses on unfair contract terms is still available on the GOV.UK website.
Links to all this information also appear in our guide 'Unfair contract terms'.
Leon Livermore, Chartered Trading Standards Institute Chief Executive, said: "Getting married should be one of the happiest and most exciting days of a couple's life but sadly it doesn't always go to plan.
"If a wedding has to be cancelled or plans have to be changed, couples could face losing out on considerable amounts of money after putting hefty deposits down to secure their dream venue or location.
"When you are trying to plan the perfect day, it is often easy to overlook certain contractual details during the planning stages but consumers need to be cautious before entering into a contract and always be aware of any costly cancellation charges or non-refundable deposits.
"Trading standards services advise businesses to ensure their practices comply with consumer protection law; those that do not risk enforcement action."