UAE: Can sellers refuse to replace 'unsafe' products sold to customers?

The warranty period should be mentioned in an invoice or receipt

by

Ashish Mehta

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Photo: File
Photo: File

Published: Sun 9 Jun 2024, 10:56 AM

Last updated: Mon 10 Jun 2024, 8:25 AM

Question: I recently bought a pair of skating shoes for my daughter but it broke only within four days. I took the shoes back to the shop hoping they'll give me a replacement but they only repaired it. The pair sold to me was obviously faulty and unsafe for my daughter, but they refused to give me a replacement. Is this legal? How can I address it?

Answer: Article 1 of the Federal Law No. 15 of 2020 on Consumer Protection (the ‘UAE Consumer Protection Law’) defines the terms ‘Defect’ and ‘Malfunction’ related products or services as below:


“Defect: A lack of quality, quantity, or efficiency, or a difference in the external shape, size, or components of a product or service resulting from an error in its design, manufacture, production, or provision to the consumer, which may lead to harm or deprive him, in whole or in part, of benefiting therefrom, provided that the Defect has not resulted from the action of the consumer.

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"Malfunction: Everything that affects the product after its production or the service after its provision, which may lead to harm the consumer or deprive him in whole or in part of benefiting therefrom, provided that the Malfunction has not resulted from the action of the consumer.”

Warranty period

In the UAE, the seller needs to mention the warranty period of the product being sold in a separate document. The seller can also state this in an invoice or receipt. This is in accordance with Article 6(2) of the Cabinet Decision No. 66 of 2023 Concerning the Executive Regulation of the Federal Law No. 15 of 2020 Concerning the Consumer Protection (the 'Cabinet Decision No. 66 of 2023'), which states: “The supplier shall give the consumer a warranty document, either separately from the invoice or within the invoice, as the case may be.”

Additionally, it is the obligation of a supplier of a product to implement the warranty. This is in accordance with Article 10 (1) of the UAE Consumer Protection Law, which states:

“The supplier shall implement all warranties, provide the required spare parts and maintenance, replace the product, or refund its monetary value, and commit to after-sales service as regards the sold Goods, within the specified time limit.”

Further, if a supplier understands the product supplied to the consumer is defective or malfunctioning, it needs to be reported to the UAE Ministry of Economy (MOEC) and make necessary arrangement to withdraw such product(s) from the market. The supplier also needs to make the necessary arrangements to replace, repair, or refund the price to a consumer. This is in accordance with Article 11 and Article 12 of the UAE Consumer Protection Law.

Article 11 of the UAE Consumer Protection Law

Obligations of the Supplier of the Good and Service upon discovering the Defect

"In the event that the supplier discovers a defect or danger in the products or service that would harm the consumer when using it or benefiting therefrom, the Supplier shall immediately inform the Ministry or the Competent Authority of potential damages and of the manner to prevent the same. Also, he shall immediately recall the same and announce that such products are hazardous, as determined by the Implementing Regulation of this Law.”

Article 12 of the UAE Consumer Protection Law

Malfunction of the Good or Service

“In the event that a malfunction is found in the products or service, the supplier shall repair or replace the same, return the products and refund its price, or re-perform the service without charge, in accordance with what is specified by the Implementing Regulation of this Law.”

Based on the aforementioned provisions of law, if you feel that the skating shoes sold by the seller are defective, you may claim a replacement for the same. Since the seller has not agreed to provide you with a replacement, then you may report the same to MOEC and file a consumer complaint against the seller.

Federal Law No. 15 of 2020 on Consumer Protection and Cabinet Decision No. 66 of 2023 Concerning the Executive Regulation of the Federal Law No. 15 of 2020 Concerning the Consumer Protection (the 'Cabinet Decision No. 66 of 2023'), are also applicable for this situation.

Ashish Mehta is the founder and Managing Partner of Ashish Mehta & Associates. He is qualified to practise law in Dubai, the United Kingdom and India. Full details of his firm on: www.amalawyers.com. Readers may e-mail their questions to: news@khaleejtimes.com or send them to Legal View, Khaleej Times, PO Box 11243, Dubai

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