To be or or not to be – Terms and Conditions

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MP’s accused tech companies of having impenetrable terms and conditions.   In a welcome intervention in to the debate as to how businesses should engage clearly with their customers – the Commons Technology Committee said some t&c’s were like “engaging with Shakespeare”. Pointing out that t&c’s should be easy to read and not simply a click box exercise.

We expect throughout 2015 the debate over privacy, data protection and security and terms and conditions to increase intensity – as consumers get more wised up on how they could and should protect themselves when engaging with on-line businesses. Here are our three top tips to help solve any problems when contracting online.

1) read the terms and conditions – yes I know really dull and time consuming, but even if you are using a free-mium model product – you are the customer – you are potentially giving away rights when you sign up to use a service. Understand what you are agreeing to. If you are not happy  – use an alternative service.

2) distance selling directive – as a consumer you have cooling off periods (7 days) when you sign up on line – make sure you are aware of these and if you are a business supplying services make sure you abide by these and make them clear to your customers.

3) clarity – keep your terms and conditions as clear as possible and as the MP’s committee don’t make them so dense they cannot be understood. If an issue arises especially where a B2C business in concerned the onus is on the business to have terms that can easily be understood especially if you are restricting a consumers normal rights.

So make your new years resolution in 2015 – to take time to be on top of your terms and conditions.

If you have any questions or comments on this please contact us.

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