The legal guarantee of the products is extended from two to three years

Teresa Sanchez Vicente

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One more year to claim the failures, breakdowns or defects of a purchased product. The Council of Ministers approved this Tuesday a modification of the current consumer regulations to expand two to three years the temporary period of legal guarantee of the goods. At the same time, the minimum time in which manufacturers are obliged to have spare parts once the product is no longer manufactured is increased from five to 10 years. In addition, when a good does not have the durability that the company and the consumer have agreed to through the purchase contract, the customer can choose between repair or replacement of the same.

Through a royal decree-law in which the Ministry of Consumer Affairs has participated, the Government also extends the limitation period from three to five years to exercise the rights that the consumer has when they are not satisfied with the purchase. On the other hand, the term of the burden of proof to prove the lack of conformity is extended, from six months to one or two years, depending on the contractual object. This means that, during this period, the consumer or user will only have to demonstrate that the good, the content or the digital service does not conform to what was agreed upon, without having to prove its lack of conformity at the time of delivery, as has happened until now.

Finally, to prevent consumers from being misled, The commercial guarantees that are included in the associated advertising will prevail over those of the legal guarantee statement if they are more beneficial to the consumer.

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Services in exchange for data

At the request of the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, the Government also includes in the new regulations a series of rights and guarantees for consumers or users before the rise of online commerce. Thus, the standard includes, for the first time, the regulation of the contracting of digital content and services that do not cost the consumer money, but are obtained in exchange for their personal data. As an example, Computer programs, applications, video files, audio files will be considered content supplies, music files, digital games, electronic books or other electronic publications. Free and open source programs are excluded from this regulation, in which the source code is shared openly and users can freely access the program or ‘software’.

The digital content or services will be considered to be available or accessible when they have reached the consumer and user environment and no other act of the entrepreneur is necessary for them to be able to use them in accordance with the contract. Since digital content or services are provided in digital format, the supply shall not require, in most situations, any additional period. Therefore, in most cases, the obligation of the entrepreneur to supply digital content or services without undue delay will imply having to supply them immediately.

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