Home > Regulatory Bodies > Complaining to Retail & Shopping Regulatory Bodies

Complaining to Retail & Shopping Regulatory Bodies

By: Thomas Muller - Updated: 1 Nov 2019 | comments*Discuss
 
Consumer Direct Office Of Fair Trading

When a consumer buys a product or service they can feel safe and empowered in the knowledge that if anything goes wrong there are expert and influential organisations ready to fight in their corner.

The OFT

The Office of Fair Trading was established in 1973 and is now well recognised as the UK’s consumer and competition authority. It is a non-ministerial government department focused on maintaining a fair and consumer friendly marketplace.

It aids consumers by empowering them with the knowledge and skills to make informed decisions and get the most out of their marketplace. It also endeavours to make sure that consumers have as much choice across the marketplace as possible, believing that with choice they hold real power.

The OFT helps resolve complaints with service providers through its advice service Consumer Direct.

Consumer Direct

Consumer Direct is a telephone and internet service that provides people with advice and information regarding consumer issues. It is funded by the OFT and produced in collaboration with Local Authority Trading Services.

Consumer Direct is a ground level service that connects with consumers on a one-to-one basis, absorbing information and intelligence that it then used to inform the efforts and campaigns of the OFT and Local Authority Trading Standards Services.

If a consumer has a problem or disagreement with a supplier of goods or services - whether it relates to defective products, bad workmanship or overpricing - then Consumer Direct is on hand to offer clear, practical and unbiased advice on how to resolve it.

Single Contact Point

The advice is free but as the telephone service operates on a 0845 number callers must pay for each call they make. Consumer Direct’s reasoning for using a paid number is that it allows them to publicise one single recognisable national number, rather than a confusing variety of regional numbers.

This helps promote the grand Consumer Direct design of providing single contact point where basic enquiries can be dealt with immediately and more specialist issues referred the appropriate Trading Standards office.

Local Authority Trading Standards Services

The efforts of Trading Standards in sustaining and improving consumer protection, and maintaining fair trading and the safety of consumer goods, are represented by around 200 local council offices around the UK.

Trading Standards provides a wealth of information regarding customer problems and how to resolve them. It also informs consumers about their rights so that they can support their claims.

Specialist Trade Associations and Regulatory Bodies

If complaint concerns the services or products of a trader that is a member of a trade association, or one regulated by a professional body, then the overseeing authority may well be able to offer guidance in dealing with the problem.

Within the trading sector there are a great number of different associations to refer to depending on the type of service. For example there is a Hairdressing Council and a Radio, Electrical and Television Retailers’ Association. A list of associations is provided on the Trading Standards website. If this does not provide the appropriate regulatory body then the Citizens Advice Bureau will always be able to help.

First Steps

There are many different organisations that can help a complaint find its resolution but a problem should always be first of all taken to the service provider directly responsible. Many companies have their own complaints procedures and customer service departments that are focused on resolving customer problems, and most are a solved in this manner.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Today (01/11/2019) I and my kids were in golocal extra(436-488 burnage laneM19 1LH) and wanted to change a voucher for £10 because we askedfor a 3G one but they gave us a Virgine Mobilevoucher instead. We gave the voucher that they gave us by mistake and the shop assistant said that he won't change our voucher because it was brought before 2 weeks. I said that the mistake wasn't mine but his because he gave us the wrong voucher. I asked for his name but he started shouting in a rude way in front of my kids which one of the is only 5 years old and the other 13 years old.
Vesi - 1-Nov-19 @ 11:54 AM
Our local corner shop has now 3 times tried his luck over charging me. First time I gave him the benefit of the doubt and thought maybe he’s made a mistake and questioned it. The second time I questioned it again and but, this time wasn’t so sure it was a mistake and the next time I went in I was very vigilant. The third time I totted up in my head what my bill would be and low and behold it was more that I had got it to so asked for an itemised receipt and on there was £3.00 paypoint charges (gas and electric cards) and £2.58 confection charged. He tried to fob me off by saying he’d scan an item twice which of course complete nonsense. Can anyone give me any information on who to report this to because I don’t want him ripping off the local community and getting away with it. Thanks in advance.
Andy - 11-Aug-19 @ 1:12 PM
I’ve sent a return back well over a month ago to ASOS instead of noose and monkey. I realised this when my money was not return and traced the parcel through click and collect. Everything has been signed for and by mistake the parcel containing suits worth quite a bit of money have gone missing in ASOS warehouse. I’ve tried to work with ASOS after contacting noose and monkey for prod they haven’t received the parcel and misplaced it as well. Since then ASOS have not located the parcel and really haven’t been helpful. I really do think they have sold the suits on as they sell the same suits but they won’t accept liability and keep saying they are looking for the parcel. What can I do to get this resolved? I already raised a complaint also been on resolver !
Ben - 13-May-19 @ 4:38 PM
HI, I have recently complained to the LGSCO in ref to a complaint and ongoing saga with my local council. I gave a fairly in depth and factual account showing a,s best I could the story with good well documented fact's. This farce has been ongoing until the LA department said we are not going to discuss it any more in essence tough. As a tax payer I found this to be a breech of my rights, so contacted the LGSCO. My first telephone contact with them, found the guy to be pretty flat and disinterested this followed within a pretty quick time, I received an email and a copy of the so called decision we won't be investigating !. I wrote requesting they REVIEW their decision "my reason I had given them full facts from me yet nothing more than a this was dealt reply from the LA, I rang again but was put through to a lady for a better explanation she was as eager as the first person, quite bullish saying I was given their answer "which basically was nothing ! she did however carry on talking at me saying "oh we were told by the department at the LA" I was complaining about, Saying this was all dealt with and informed me THEY suggested I WAS LYING. It beggars belief I give pages of FACTS about poor treatment from Bristol City Council they say"oh it's been dealt and he's a liar ? SO WE WONT BE INVESTIGATING ALBEIT A VERY SERIOUS ISSUE. I AM SURE AS YOUR WEB SITE WRITES AS IT'S A LOCAL AUTHORITY THEY WON'T INVESTIGATE IT'S LIKE ASKING THE DODGY POLICEMAN TO INVESTIGATE THE DODGY POLICEMAN. Burles.
Burles - 6-Mar-19 @ 3:54 PM
I placed an order with a company on the 1st December. 3 e mails later my order has not arrived. I've had e mail correspondence from the company with contradictory information about when my order will be with me. Who else can I complain to please. Some regulatory body? Thanks
Help - 28-Dec-18 @ 4:52 PM
I had retailer agreement on 22nd May 2018 with Malthurst Retail Ltd(franchise agreement) but unfortunately MRH terminated my agreement on 2nd July 2018 without any reasons i requested themto give me reasons but they declined. Could I do anything?
Rafiq - 4-Sep-18 @ 9:47 PM
Hiya I sold my phone to a company called IPhone Recycler through Sell The Mobile website. I sent my phone special delivery and had a confirmation email that it arrived on Saturday (18th August 2018) and they stated it was with the technicians but they needed my code to unlock the phone. The website states they send payment within the day of receiving the handset. Since then, it has been 4 days and they have not answered any of my email updates, phone calls and the contact number on their website rings through to a travel agency’s. I believe this to be fraud and they have effectively stolen my phone and I have received no money whatsoever and I have no idea how to proceed?
Ron - 23-Aug-18 @ 7:36 AM
@Amy - You would have to get in touch with the company again directly and ask to speak to a line manager. You can also ask for the company's official complaint procedure (all companies have one).
Rache90 - 10-Aug-18 @ 11:32 AM
I returned two separate orders to ASOS and received an email on the 8th June 2018 saying it had been received and £20 would be refunded to be in 5-7 working days. I then received an email on the 18th June 2018 confirming they had received my second return and were refunding me £157.49. It's now the 7th August and i still have not had my money. Every time I get in touch I keep getting told 5 working days, I had to send copies of my bank statements to prove to them I hadn't received my money. Can anyone help?
Amy - 7-Aug-18 @ 8:31 AM
Sophia- Your Question:
We ordered a tailor made bridal outfit fron an asian boutiwue in Blackburn. They took all the measurements including length of gown when 4 inch heels would be worn. The outfit has come back too short and with dirt marks all inside. There isn't enough time to order another one longer which they haven't offered anyway but they said they could only offer 50£ off and that we must not have told them about the heels. Is there anyone we could contact? Also the owner was shouting at us that we paid nothing for outfit in first place when it was the price advertised and near enough 2000£!!!

Our Response:
In addition to the advice in the article, please also see small claims court, via the link here.
ComplaintExpert - 23-Jul-18 @ 10:32 AM
We ordered a tailor made bridal outfit fron an asian boutiwue in Blackburn. They took all the measurements including length of gown when 4 inch heels would be worn. The outfit has come back too short and with dirt marks all inside. There isn't enough time to order another one longer which they haven't offered anyway but they said they could only offer 50£ off and that we must not have told them about the heels. Is there anyone we could contact? Also the owner was shouting at us that we paid nothing for outfit in first place when it was the price advertised and near enough 2000£!!!
Sophia - 22-Jul-18 @ 11:46 AM
I purchased a fishtank from all ponds solutions and as I opened the package it was damaged badly,,the driver got me to sign before I could check the goods saying he was in a rush,,the courier was pallet ways, I phoned the driver to come back but said not my problem and put the phone down,,I contacted all ponds solutions and they are waiting for a response from courier,,they say it's not in their interest to do anything as it was signed for,,
Jules - 17-Apr-18 @ 8:56 PM
@Jilly - it's up to the shop want they want to charge. If you were not happy, you would have had the option to walk out of the shop at the time. Not much you can do if you have bought and smoked them!
MaL67 - 12-Apr-18 @ 9:30 AM
I purchased a packet of cigarettes from a shop in Bury which charged me £9.85 in all other shops they are £8.00. I think this is way out of order, is there anything I can do?
Jilly - 11-Apr-18 @ 11:35 AM
Hi. I have been trying to speak to sports direct customer service for few weeks and no one picks up the phone, automated service has a message and then the call get disconnected. Very very 3rd class service. I don't understand how can regulatory authority allows this to happen. Shame
Ayya - 8-Jan-18 @ 4:51 PM
@Ray - I'd complain to the shop owner - but the NHS is trying to encourage the rise of a price of a packet in order to save lives.
BNN - 7-Dec-17 @ 2:06 PM
I purchased a pack cigarettes in costcutter welling Kent same as yesterdayyesterday was charged 7.80 today 11.30 as I paid contactless and couldn't see screen I didn't realise till I made him give me a receipt when I challenged him he told me that is the price and refused a refund. They are 7.50 anywhere else so I told him he is a robbing ...... how can they get away with this
Ray - 5-Dec-17 @ 5:09 PM
@BurgerKingUK #stanstedairport Do you accept Euros? Yes. Place order. €9. Hand over money. As this is a €50 note, we will charge you €20 for your meal. I’ve never heard anything more ridiculous!!! Is that even legal??!!! #burgerking #ripoff
Jared - 17-Nov-17 @ 5:38 AM
Doug - Your Question:
My order from Argos was delivered to the wrong address and recipient (value £220). Argos flatly refuse to resend the order or offer a refund - as they say the parcel was delivered and signed for, and that is the end of the matter as far as they are concerned (even though their helpline operative admitted that my order had been delivered to completely the wrong address from the details on her screen, and that it had been signed for and accepted by the occupant there - even though it was clearly not intended for them - Argos later flatly denied this). They refuse to enter in to any further communication with me and say that they will only reply if I take them to court. I have tried every consumer organisation at my disposal but Argos still refuse to respond. They refuse to offer any proof of their claim that my order was delivered to me - or provide the signature they obtained.

Our Response:
Argos would have to attempt to resolve this matter with the courier directly. If Argos refuses to deal with your complaint, please see the link here.
ComplaintExpert - 6-Nov-17 @ 2:04 PM
My order from Argos was delivered to the wrong address and recipient (value £220). Argos flatly refuse to resend the order or offer a refund - as they say the parcel was delivered and signed for, and that is the end of the matter as far as they are concerned (even though their helpline operative admitted that my order had been delivered to completely the wrong address from the details on her screen, and that it had been signed for and accepted by the occupant there - even though it was clearly not intended for them- Argos later flatly denied this). They refuse to enter in to any further communication with me and say that they will only reply if I take them to court. I have tried every consumer organisation at my disposal but Argos still refuse to respond. They refuse to offer any proof of their claim that my order was delivered to me - or provide the signature they obtained.
Doug - 4-Nov-17 @ 7:07 PM
I have purchased 4 items Tommy Hilfiger via website, unfortunately received 3 items. The attached in a box paperwork listed items. I have emailed customer service about it. Do I get refund or short item to follow. I did not received reply back, called TH ( 25min waiting time). Finally someone picked up phone, I have been asked to send picture of paperwork received as a proof of my claim. At the moment no reply from TH customer service. I am chasing them but they are not replying on my questions.
Anna - 4-Sep-17 @ 8:58 PM
also it wasnt once but twice he did this to him once ok benegit of doubt but twice now way i wasnt having it the thing was he didnt know i was married to himnow he does
sal - 23-Jun-17 @ 2:25 PM
Omg i just went in to Spar at Barton to top up Electric Meter to which the man topped it up straight away. Just before my husband went in to top up and he said im not doing that service on electric no more. you know if you have a condition cant walk or anything on barton the shop is close and good. But for this action from him not once but twice not topping the key up i wanna know why he said this to him im white my hubby is morrocan never been horrible to anyone. when i confronted him he put his head down didnt know what to say and to top it of i was immotional anyway as my hubby has been diagnosed with fibrosis so i just flipped at the asian boss yet ive never been like this towards anyone this sort of make a desicion cant be right on spar in bartonshops headington oxford
sal - 23-Jun-17 @ 2:20 PM
Hie, I gave my laptop for repairing on 6th march and there by asked them to fix it by 9th as I had flight on the next day. They promised but didnt send me my lappy on that day so I myself had to tk trouble and get my lappy. These people didn't refund my courier money and even charged £350 for it. I found my laptop on 10th but yet they haven't given me invoice. I have a doubt that these people have taken advantage of my urgency and there by charged me heavily. I am begging for my invoice and they aren't giving it to me. Please tell me what should I do
Ronnie - 13-Apr-17 @ 10:28 AM
Hi I live above a newsagents and have noticed the manager regularly takes extra money from certain elderly customers when these customers ask them to count out for what they're paying for is there anyone I can complain to anonymously I really hate seeing her take advantage of the vunerable I would say something to her but she's a nasty piece of work
Dobie - 10-Apr-17 @ 8:33 PM
Today I was in Ealing Broadway shopping centre and helped an elderly woman who was stressed say the staff in car phone warehouse deleted all her phone contacts from her mobile phone when she wanted help in removing two numbers only. I went to carphone warehouse with this lady and they initially said she asked them to delete all numbers and was rude and said basically to leave the shop. I really felt sorry for the lady as she used the phone for emergencies with all numbers so she could call someone when she needed them
Sar - 4-Apr-17 @ 11:35 PM
Hi I purchased my wedding dress from a Asian bridal store in Birmingham called Panache Boutique on 20 August 2016. I provided them with my wedding date of 5 December 2016 and they confirmed my collection date would be 15 November 2016. I started calling for updates a week prior to my collection date but each time would be told someone would call me back which never happened. They kept telling me my dress was still in production and would be here on or around the collection date. The collection date came and no call was made to myself by the store so I called them on 16 November 2016 to ask them what was going on. I was told there was a delay with the dress and I was guaranteed to get iton 3 December 2016 (2 days before my wedding) I panicked but was glad I was getting it in time. I booked myself in for a fitting for the 3rd December. I then received a call on 20 November 2016 by the store saying they were sorry but there's been another delay with the dress and I would now receive it on 12 December 2016 (7 days AFTER my wedding) I was in disbelief and disconnected the call. My sister then called as I was to upset to speak and they said there was nothing they could do and it would be here for the 12th. We've now had to rearrange the dates to the whole wedding and pay a price to do so. It's an Asian bridal store so I don't know if they're regulated but I want to make an official complaint. How do I do this? Thanks
Shabana - 21-Nov-16 @ 2:36 PM
On February 2016, I applied for MTN Data through TFG Group. They send SIM card to me, and they promise to swimswap and activate within 48 hours. But it was not actavicted I went to Westgate Foschini I spoke to Sifiso, he called the TFG HQ, they promise to activate within 48 hours. But it was not activated. By that time my R135.00 was dedactedwithout having Data.. On the 26th August I was at Westgate Foschini again with the same problem. They again promise to activate the simcard within 48 hours. I demanded that I must get my 7 months data cause it was dedacted while the simcard was not activated. On the 5th August I went to the Foschini store again,with the same problem, At long last it was activated but not swimswap I was given a new number. The problem was that they gave me one month data 2gk. What about 6 months data whichR135.00 was dedacted while the simcard was not activated.
Sonto - 12-Sep-16 @ 10:51 AM
Cem - Your Question:
There's a small corner shop in North Wales that was recently taken over by new people, they were okay at first but now they are forever short changing people and over charging on on pay points. I know for a fact as well that if an item came with a price so for example a can of rockstar shows 99p at the top of the can, they can not sell it for £1 I know it's a penny over but that's still illegal isn't it? This has been going for like 7 months as well.

Our Response:
If you feel that the shop in question is breaching trading laws, then you may wish to inform Trading Standards.
ComplaintExpert - 18-Aug-16 @ 12:08 PM
There's a small corner shop in North Wales that was recently taken over by new people, they were okay at first but now they are forever short changing people and over charging on on pay points. I know for a fact as well that if an item came with a price so for example a can of rockstar shows 99p at the top of the can, they can not sell it for £1 I know it's a penny over but that's still illegal isn't it? This has been going for like 7 months as well.
Cem - 17-Aug-16 @ 4:15 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments