If you are a doorstep seller or a doorstep
buyer, read on to find out your
Doorstep sales your rights as a consumer
If you purchase goods or services from a doorstep seller that
cost more than £42, then the trader is required by law to provide a
written copy of your cancellation rights (known as the model
cancellation form). This should explain your rights to cancel the
contract at the time that the contract is made. These
cancellation rights enable the consumer to cancel the agreement for
fourteen days after the contract has been made. If a trader fails
to provide you with a written notice then they may be deemed to be
in ‘breach of contract’ which could mean that the consumer seeks an
appropriate remedy but the trader will also be deemed to have
committed a criminal offence.
Be wary of salespeople cold-calling offering roofing,
gardening, cleansing or driveway work as they may be bogus callers.
If you receive a call of this nature call the
citizens advice consumer service immediately on 08454 04 05 06.
Doorstep selling your duties as a trader
If you have sold goods or services over a doorstep that cost in
excess of £42, you must give written notice (referred to as the
model cancellation form) of a fourteen day cooling
off period to the consumer. The cancellation period of 14
days will start after the contract has been made. A notice of
the right to cancel must be dated and provided to the customer at
the time that the contract is made. You are also under an
obligation to provide amongst other things comprehensive details on
your business identity, the service or goods provided (please see
links at the end to read more about what you need to provide).
There are some exceptions on the information you have to provide
for repair or maintenance contracts under £170.
For traders, these Regulations apply to any contract where goods
or services costing over £42 are supplied to a consumer. The
Regulations set the cooling off period to fourteen days This
period commences when the contract is made. A notice of the right
to cancel (known as the model cancellation form) in a durable
medium must be given to the customer at the time that the contract
I want to sell to consumers in their own homes or I work in
home improvements, double glazing, etc and I need to visit
consumers in order to provide them with a quote, what law applies
The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional
Charges) Regulations 2013 places obligations on businesses to
supply certain key pieces of information relating to the goods or
services they are supplying as well being under a legal obligation
to provide the consumer with details of their right to a fourteen
cancel period in writing in a durable medium. As mentioned above
you will also need to comply and be aware of the Consumer
Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (a general duty to
trade fairly), the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 (provide
services with reasonable care and skill), the Companies Act 2006
and the Provision of Services Regulations 2009 (information on your
What is a durable medium?
It must be on paper unless the consumer expressly agrees to it
being in another medium (e.g. email).
What are the consequences of not providing a model cancellation
Failure to provide a notice of the right to cancel to your
customers is a criminal offence.
There are other laws and regulations that can directly apply to
sales made at the doorstep, in particular The Consumer Protection
from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008, the Supply of Goods and
Services Act 1982 (as amended), the Fraud Act 2006 and the
Companies Act 2006.
The consumer wants the work to start now, do I have to wait
fourteen days before I can begin?
No if the consumer agrees to this expressly in writing.
The consumer agreed the work to start within the fourteen
period but now wants to cancel, what can I do?
Where a service has been started within the
cancellation period at the express request of the consumer, but has
not been completed, the consumer still has the right to cancel.
However, the consumer will have to pay for the service used during
the time up to when they informed you of their decision to
Are there any exceptions?
Contracts under £42, for food and drink, or those delivered by
regular roundsmen are exempted amongst others. Additionally, if the
consumer cancels agreed work that has commenced within the cooling
off period, then the consumer will still have to pay for the work
carried out up to the point of cancellation providing that they
agreed in writing for the service to start within the cancellation
Where can I get more Doorstep Selling Guidance for
Department for Business Innovations and Skills.