Trading Standards Residents Newsletter

Trading Standards Residents Newsletter

Welcome to the first edition of our resident's newsletter!

This newsletter is designed to inform West Sussex Residents about Trading Standards activities.  As well as providing information and advice on issues that we hope will be of interest to you we will also use the newsletter to send out alerts about scams and 'rogue trader' issues that come to our attention.

Rogue Trader Week 2015

Door Sticker
If you would like to obtain a door sticker click on the picture above to go to our website.

Don't deal with traders who call at your door...

The launch of the first edition of the newsletter coincides with National Rogue Trader week. Trading Standards Officers and Officers from Sussex Police have been out on patrol in areas where residents have previously been exploited by doorstep traders speaking to traders to ensure they are complying with relevant legal requirements and offering advice to residents. Rogue Trader Week seeks to raise awareness of doorstep crime issues and in particular the risks involved in employing a trader who knocks at your door seeking to carry out property or garden improvement work.  Unfortunately, dishonest traders are known to exploit vulnerable and elderly residents.  

Why should you say ‘NO’ to doorstep callers offering to do work at your property?

  • They may pressurise or intimidate you to let them do unnecessary work
  • They may do a poor job
  • They may charge you far more than quoted or far more than the job is worth
  • You may not get what you paid for
  • They may provide false names, addresses and telephone numbers

In order to avoid the risk of being exploited, always seek recommendations from friends, neighbours or family members before deciding who to employ to carry out work on your property or garden and always obtain more than one quotation. Consider using a Trading Standards approved ‘Buy With Confidence’ (BWC) trader. You can collect a BWC directory from your local library or call 01243 642124 or visit:

You can obtain advice in relation to doorstep trader issues from the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 04 05 06.  You can also report doorstep trader issues and other concerns direct to Trading Standards using our incident report form  

New Consumer Rights

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 (CRA) came into force on 1st October and brings in a range of enhanced consumer protection measures.

The Act repeals a number of older pieces of legislation and amongst other things provides a clear timeline for what rights consumers have if the product they purchase is faulty.

For example, during the expected life of a product, consumers will be entitled to the following:-

  • For up to 30 days: a full refund for a faulty item
  • For up to 6 months: a full refund if the faulty item can’t be repaired or replaced
  • over 6 months (and up to a maximum of 6 years if the product can be expected to last that long): a repair or replacement, or if that's not possible, some money back.

The “burden of proof” remains the same, with the trader needing to prove a product was NOT inherently faulty if a problem develops within the first 6 months, and after 6 months the consumer needs to prove it WAS inherently faulty if a problem develops.

For further information visit the Citizens Advice website here.

(If you operate a business and want further information on the CRA then go to and follow the links to the Consumer Rights Act 2015)

Further legislation changes

October is a busy month for changes to legislation! From 1st October there are a number of changes in relation to smoking in private vehicles, and also relating to the sale of e-cigarettes & e-liquids. It is now illegal:-

  • For retailers to sell e-cigarettes or e-liquids to someone under 18
  • For adults to buy (or try to buy) tobacco products or e-cigarettes for someone under 18
  • To smoke in private vehicles that are carrying someone under 18

You may also have seen in the news that from 5th October all large retailers are required to charge 5p for most single-use carrier bags.

Scams Awareness Month

July was national 'Scams Awareness Month'  This is an annual event which seeks to raise awareness of scams.  The theme of this year's campaign was:-

"Don't be Rushed, Don't be Hushed"

The campaign aim was to encourage people not to be rushed into hasty decisions by scammers and to discourage victims from being hushed into silence by any sense of shame that they had fallen victim to a scam.

You may have seen our officers out and about at stands in supermarkets and shopping centres across the county promoting the event.

scam stand

Scams are perpetrated through multiple communication channels including letters, emails, phone calls, on the doorstep and online.  Unfortunately they are constantly evolving but the following tips could help you to avoid becoming a victim!

  • If it sounds too good to be true it probably is
  • If you haven’t bought a ticket – you can’t win it
  • You shouldn’t have to pay anything to get a prize
  • If in any doubt, don’t reply.  Bin it, delete it or hang up
  • Persuasive sales patter?  Just say: “No thank you”
  • Contacted out of the blue – be suspicious, regardless of who they claim to be
  • Never give out your bank details or other confidential personal information unless you are absolutely certain you can trust the person contacting you
  • Take your time – resist pressure to make a decision straight away
  • Never send money to someone you don’t know
  • Your bank will never attend your home
  • Your bank or the police will never ask for your bank card or pin number
  • Police and Trading Standards Officers will never call you and ask you to transfer money in connection with an alleged fraud or to pay legal costs 
  • Computer firms do not make unsolicited phone calls to help you fix your computer
  • Don’t sell your valuables to doorstep callers and be wary of buying goods from them
  • Don’t suffer in silence – tell others about scams!
  • If in doubt contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on for advice 03454 04 05 06

Illicit tobacco work

Trading Standards enforces legislation relating to the sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products.  We take robust action to tackle the availability of illicit tobacco including foreign labelled and counterfeit products.  Retailers go to extraordinary lengths to conceal these items to evade detection including creating storage behind concealed remote controlled panels and in hollowed out walls and floors.  We use specially trained tobacco detection dogs to locate the items and have seized large quantities of illicit tobacco products.  If you are aware of any retailers selling cheap, potentially illicit, cigarettes or tobacco you can report details direct to Trading Standards using our incident report form. We would also like to know about retailers selling tobacco products or alcohol to persons aged under 18.      

Tobacco detection dog ‘Yoyo' with another haul of illicit cigarettes

Recent Trading Standards news

Trading Standards Officers work hard to protect consumers and legitimate businesses by taking appropriate action to tackle unfair and illegal trading. 

The links below take you to details of recent prosecutions and other actions:-

Gatwick meet and greet car parking firm fined for failing to store customer vehicles securely

'Legal highs' factory discovered in Southwick

A warning to residents on how to avoid the ‘silent and invisible killer’ – carbon monoxide

Worthing retailer fined for selling illegal cigarettes after discovery by sniffer dog 'Yoyo'



You can keep up to date with what Trading Standards are doing by following us on Twitter. All our latest tweets can be found here.

Product Recall Information

You can find the latest information on products and food items which have been recalled for safety reasons by clicking here.

Subscribing to this newsletter

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