ENFORCEMENT AND CONSEQUENCES OF NON-COMPLIANCE
The Consumer Protection Act provides protection and recourse where Consumer rights have been violated. Like the National Credit Act established the National Consumer Tribunal, the CPA establishes the National Consumer Commission to enforce the provisions of the CPA, and to ensure Consumers are educated and well-informed of his or her rights. The Consumer Protection Act provides for quick and effective complaint resolution for both Consumer and businesses. Non-compliance sanctions include fines, imprisonment for 12 months or in the case of private information disclosure, imprisonment for 10 years. The Act also makes provision for administrative penalties with a maximum limit of 10% of turnover or R1m.
The CPA provides that Consumers, interested persons on behalf of the Consumer and Non-Governmental Organisations with public interest cases on behalf of the Consumer can make complaints. The Act provides for Special legal remedies such as:
- Class actions
- Discrimination complaints may be brought to both the Equality Court and the National Consumer Commission for referral to the Equality Court
Consumers are encouraged to find resolutions to their complaints with the supplier first. Failing satisfactory resolution of the complaint, the matter is to be referred to a Dispute Resolution Agent. The National Consumer Commission will refer minor matters to Provincial Offices who will escalate the matter to Provincial Consumer Courts. Only as a last resort will the Commission/Tribunal resolve individual complaints. Finally, cases are investigated by the National Consumer Commission and referred to the Consumer Tribunal. The Consumer Tribunal has the authority to declare the CPA contravened, order changes in practice, impose administrative fines and interdict future prohibited practices.
WHERE TO COMPLAIN
The Consumer Protection Act established the National Consumer Commission to investigate complaints, and the National Consumer Tribunal, which was created by the National Credit Act in September 2006, which is responsible for adjudication of violations and transgressions of the National Credit Act and the Consumer Protection Act.
National Consumer Commission (NCC)
Mail: Private Bag x84
Street:The DTI Campus, Mulayo (Block E)
77 Meintjies Street
Tel: +27 86 026 6786
Fax: +27 86 151 5229
NATIONAL CONSUMER COMMISSION (NCC)
National Consumer Tribunal (NCT)
Mail:Private Bag X110
Street: Ground floor, Block B
Lakefield Office Park
272 West Avenue
c/o West and Lenchen North
Tel: +27 12 663 5615
Fax:+27 12 663 5693
NATIONAL CONSUMER TRIBUNAL (NCT)
Department Of Trade and Industry
Mail: Private Bag X84
Street: Block A 3rd Floor
77 Meintjies Street
Tel:+27 861 843 384
Fax: +27 861 843 888
Please note that is only as a brief summary of the main provision of the Act and should not be relied upon as a legal document. There are many other provisions and exemptions under the legislation. For more detailed information and the full Act please visit the National Consumer Commission website.
DOWNLOAD FULL ACT
Please note that is only as a brief summary of the main provision of the Code and should not be relied upon as a legal document. There are many other provisions and exemptions under the Code. For more detailed information and the full Code please download the Code of Banking Practice.
Consumer Protection Act (68 of 2008)