Customer protection

Consumers' rights and distance sales


Consumers have the right to a 14 day cooling-off period when they buy goods or services worth more than £42 after a sales visit. This applies whether the sales visit was solicited or unsolicited. Sales visits made to a consumer's home, workplace or at a location arranged by the trader (away from their business premises) are all covered. Individual consumers buying online, by mail order or by phone, have similar rights.

This applies to most businesses selling goods and services off-premises or at a distance. However there are exemptions for some businesses eg those providing financial services, holidays, personalised products or some short-life products.

For more detailed information on consumer contract rights and exemptions, see consumer contracts.

  • Trading Standards Service Northern Ireland
    0300 123 6262