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16 1980



Preliminary and General

Short title.

1. —(1) This Act may be cited as the Sale of Goods and Supply of services Act, 1980.

(2) This Act shall come into operation six months after the date of its passing.

Interpretation generally.

2. —(1) In this Act—

Act of 1893” means the Sale of Goods Act, 1893;

business” includes profession and the activities of any State authority or local authority;

deals as consumer” shall be construed in accordance with section 3;

fair and reasonable” shall be construed in accordance with subsection (3);

hire-purchase agreement” has the meaning assigned to it by section 1 of the Hire-Purchase Act, 1946 ;

the Minister” means the Minister for Industry, Commerce and Tourism;

service” does not include meteorological or aviation services provided by the Minister for Transport or anything done under a contract of service;

State authority” means a Minister of the Government, the Commissioners of Public Works in Ireland and the Irish Land Commission.

(2) A reference in this Act to the supply of a service includes reference to the rendering or provision of a service or facility and to an offer to supply.

(3) Where, under section 13 , 31 , 40 or 46 of this Act or under section 55 of the Act of 1893 (inserted by section 22 of this Act), a question arises as to whether a term, agreement or provision is fair and reasonable regard shall be had to the criteria set out in the Schedule in deciding it.

Dealing as consumer.

3. —(1) In the Act of 1893 and this Act, a party to a contract is said to deal as consumer in relation to another party if—

(a) he neither makes the contract in the course of a business nor holds himself out as doing so, and

(b) the other party does make the contract in the course of a business, and

(c) the goods or services supplied under or in pursuance of the contract are of a type ordinarily supplied for private use or consumption.

(2) On—

(a) a sale by competitive tender, or

(b) a sale by auction—

(i) of goods of a type, or

(ii) by or on behalf of a person of a class

defined by the Minister by order,

the buyer is not in any circumstances to be regarded as dealing as consumer.

(3) Subject to this, it is for those claiming that a party does not deal as consumer to show that he does not.


4. —(1) Subject to section 46 (which provides for certain agreements whether made before or after the commencement of this Act) this Act does not apply to contracts made before such commencement.

(2) This Act does not affect any exemption from liability conferred by or under statute.


5. —(1) The Minister may by order amend or revoke an order under this Act including an order made by virtue of this subsection.

(2) A draft of every order proposed to be made under this Act shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas and the order shall not be made until a resolution approving the draft has been passed by each such House.


6. —(1) A person guilty of an offence under this Act shall be liable—

(a) on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding £500 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both the fine and the imprisonment, or

(b) on conviction on indictment, to a fine not exceeding £10,000 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years or to both the fine and the imprisonment.

(2) Where an offence under this Act which is committed by a body corporate or an unincorporated body of persons is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to be attributable to any neglect on the part of, any person (or any person acting on his behalf) being a director, manager, secretary, member of the committee of management or other controlling authority of any such body or being any other similar officer of any such body, that person or the person so acting as the case may be shall also be guilty of that offence.

Prosecution of offences.

7. —(1) Summary proceedings for an offence under this Act may be brought and prosecuted by the Minister or by the Director of Consumer Affairs.

(2) Notwithstanding section 10 (4) of the Petty Sessions (Ireland) Act, 1851, summary proceedings for an offence under this Act may be instituted within 18 months from the date of the offence.


8. —The expenses incurred by the Minister or the Director of Consumer Affairs in the administration of this Act shall, to such extent as may be sanctioned by the Minister for Finance, be paid out of moneys provided by the Oireachtas.