Sports clubs, as well as sports shops and sports manufacturers, should take note that the laws applying to contracts with consumers have recently changed.

For the purposes of these new laws, an individual will be classed as a consumer if they are acting for purposes wholly or mainly outside their trade, business, craft or profession.

The changes, which applied from 13 June 2014, will be particularly relevant to organisations with online shops or which take any other payments online for goods or services or digital content. More information must be provided to consumers, both before and after they have completed their online transaction, and trading organisations must now give consumers at least 14 days to cancel their order (subject to certain exceptions).

There is a specific cancellation form that must be provided to consumers – although consumers do not have to use the specific form to cancel their contract. The final button clicked by an individual to place their order must now be labelled so that it is clear clicking on the button commits the consumer to making a payment. This could require sports clubs, sports shops and sports manufactures to update “Order Now” buttons so that they instead say “Pay Now”.

We have produced an easy to digest summary highlighting the key points. The new laws are set out in the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013.