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Contract Law Essay

1324 words - 6 pages

(D2) Evaluate the statutory protection given to a consumer in their dealings with a business and the remedies available.

In this assignment I will explain how well do the remedies and Acts set by the government protect the consumers and resolve a problem in case of breach of contract. I will also explain the features of the courts process; Woolf reforms, track system, small claims court, county court and time limits- stating the strengths and weaknesses of each.

The remedies available, protect the consumers quite well in the event of breach of contract as the injured party is able to claim for damages and gain some form of compensation for the loss of the contract; this is an ...view middle of the document...

Lien, Resale and Reservation of Title do not protect the consumers but highly protect the business.

The features of the courts process

In an event of breach of contract, the injured party has to go through the courts process in order to claim remedies.

Woolf Reforms – is what the civil court system was transformed under, which resulted in the Civil Procedure Act 1997 and Civil Procedure Rules. There are three main civil courts that deal with such cases and claims; the Small Claims Court, the County Court and the High Court. Woolf Reforms has made it easier for customers and the general public to make claim. As before small cases where dealt by a solicitor, however the changes made by Lord Woolf made it much easier to take people to court. The only weakness of Woolf Reforms is that the burden on courts and judges has increased.

If an individual or a business is in a dispute, they must apply to the court; their case will then be given to a judge who will be assigned as case manager. The case manager will then allocate the case to the correct court depending on how serious the case is- this is known as a track system. Small claims track deals with small claims court cases, the fast-track deals with County Court cases and the multi-track system deals with complex High Court cases.

Small Claims Court- The small claim court is a part of the county court; it deals only with small claims that do not exceed £5,000. It includes claims such as failure to supply goods, pay for goods and other contractual and business disputes. Cases that are dealt with at the small claims court are not expected to raise any difficult law questions. An advantage is that; if the case is simple and both parties agree, the judge will make a decision on documents alone, without a hearing. The judge is likely to give directions, such as about certain documents that might be needed in advance; the number of witnesses allowed and will also set a date for a hearing. Another benefit of small claims court is that it is very cheap and brief and therefore does not take up a lot of time. The weakness is that; if the judge passes on instructions without a hearing, the parties do not get a chance to express their opinion and explain the situation; it will therefore not be of much help to the parties.

The County Court- It deals with fast track cases worth between £5,000 and £15,000. Cases at the County Court are more formal than those at the Small Claims Court and are heard by a circuit judge. The parties are allowed to have legal representations, which is highly beneficial. The parties at the county court are allowed to...

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