The Consumer Rights Act demonstrates that the treatment of exclusion clauses remains an important, and sometimes controversial, area in contract law. The protections put into place by the common law have now been supplemented by substantive legislation in this area. The tensions between freedom of contract and consumer protection are clearly illustrated by such clauses. There is also the question of whether legal methods alone can ever fully protect consumers.
You should now be able to:
- discuss the purpose and common uses of exclusion clauses
- identify whether an exclusion clause has been incorporated into a contract and what is covered by its wording
- assess the impact of domestic and European legislation on an exclusion clause
- analyse and evaluate the balance the law strikes between freedom of contract and consumer protection.
If you are unsure about any of these, go back and reread the relevant section(s) of this course.