In the guide
This guidance is for England, Scotland and Wales
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) raised concerns in 2020 about some fertility clinics' practices, such as providing unclear price information and advertising misleading success rates. It also identified a general lack of awareness that consumer law applies in the sector.
Competition and Markets Authority guidance
The CMA - working closely with the sector regulator, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) - has published Guidance for Fertility Clinics on Consumer Law: Helping Fertility Clinics Comply With Their Consumer Law Obligations. It sets out the CMA's views on how consumer law applies to clinics in the fertility sector.
- provide the information that patients need so they can make a genuine comparison of clinics, including on price and success rates
- ensure they don't mislead patients - for example, around the effectiveness of their treatments and what they will be paying
- ensure they don't mis-sell treatments, such as 'add-on' treatments; these are optional extras offered by some clinics that can cost up to £2,500 per cycle
- make sure terms and practices are fair
Following its publication of the above guidance, the CMA carried out a review to assess fertility clinics' compliance with the law. In September 2022, it published the findings from the compliance review.Back to top
For more information on the work of trading standards services - and the possible consequences of not abiding by the law - please see 'Trading standards: powers, enforcement and penalties'.Back to top
In this update
Link added to the findings of the CMA's compliance review.
Last reviewed / updated: September 2022Back to top
Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008
Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013
This information is intended for guidance; only the courts can give an authoritative interpretation of the law.
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