Detailed Analysis of the New Consumer Protection Act, 2019

Last Updated On: July 24, 2020, 9:18 p.m.
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THE NEW CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT, 2019

 

The Consumer Protection Act, 2019 (New) has published in the official gazette on 9th August as per the assent received by the President.

In exercise to the powers mentioned by sub-section (3) of section 1 of the New Act, MINISTRY OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS, FOOD AND PUBLIC DISTRIBUTION has issued a Notification No. S.O. 2351(E) dated 15th July 2020. The Central Government has appointed the 20th day of July 2020 as the date on which the following provisions of the said Act shall come into force.

 

Features of Consumer Protection Act:

  • Consumer Protection Councils
  • Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA)
  • Simplified Dispute Resolution Process
  • Mediation
  • Product Liability
  • Rules on e-commerce and direct selling
  • Penalty for adulteration of products/spurious goods

 

Pecuniary limit under the New Act and Old Act:

DISTRICT COMMISSION: 

Section 34 of the New Act: Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the District Commission shall have jurisdiction to entertain complaints where the value of the goods or services paid as consideration does not exceed one crore rupees.

Section 11 of the old Act: subject to the other provisions of this Act, the District Forum shall have jurisdiction to entertain complaints where the value of the goods or services and the compensation, if any, claimed does not exceed rupees twenty lakhs 

 

STATE COMMISSION: 

Section 47(1) of the New Act: Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the State Commission shall have jurisdiction to entertain complaints where the value of the goods or services paid as consideration, exceeds rupees one crore but does not exceed rupees ten crore 

Section 17(1) of the Old Act: subject to the other provisions of this Act, the State Commission shall have jurisdiction to entertain complaints where the value of the goods or services and compensation, if any, claimed, exceeds rupees twenty lakhs, but does not exceed rupees one crore 

 

NATIONAL COMMISSION:

Section 58(1) of the New Act: Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the National Commission shall have jurisdiction to entertain complaints where the value of the goods or services paid as consideration, exceeds rupees ten crores.

Section 21 of the Old Act: subject to the other provisions of this Act, the National Commission shall have jurisdiction to entertain complaints where the value of the goods or services and compensation, if any, claimed, exceeds rupees one crore 

 

THE TIME PERIOD FOR FILING OF APPEAL TO STATE COMMISSION:

Section 41 of the New Act: Any person aggrieved by an order made by the District Commission may prefer an appeal against such order to the State Commission on the grounds of facts or law within a period of forty-five days from the date of the order, in such form and manner, as may be prescribed

Section 15 of the Old Act:  any person aggrieved by an order made by the District Forum may prefer an appeal against such order to the State Commission within a period of thirty days from the date of the order, in such form and manner as may be prescribed. 

 

CHANGE IN DEPOSIT AMOUNT TO FILE AN APPEAL BEFORE STATE COMMISSION:

The Opposite Party needs to deposit 50% of the amount ordered by the District Commission before filing the appeal before State Commission, earlier the ceiling was of a maximum of Rs. 25,000/-, which has been removed. 

Second Proviso to Section 41 (1) of the New Act provides that no appeal by a person, who is required to pay any amount in terms of an order of the District Commission, shall be entertained by the State Commission unless the appellant has deposited fifty percent of that amount in the manner as may be prescribed.

Whereas, Second Proviso to Section 15 of the Old Act provides that no appeal by a person, who is required to pay any amount in terms of an order of the District Forum, shall be entertained by the State Commission unless the appellant has deposited in the prescribed manner fifty percent. of that amount or twenty-five thousand rupees, whichever is less. 

 

CHANGE IN DEPOSIT AMOUNT TO FILE AN APPEAL BEFORE NATIONAL COMMISSION:

Second Proviso to Section 51 (1) of the New Act provides that no appeal by a person, who is required to pay any amount in terms of an order of the State Commission, shall be entertained by the National Commission unless the appellant has deposited 50% of that amount.

Second Proviso to Section 19 of the Old Act provides that no appeal by a person, who is required to pay any amount in terms of an order of the State Commission, shall be entertained by the National Commission unless the appellant has deposited in the prescribed manner 50% of the amount or rupees thirty-five thousand, whichever is less. 

 

CHANGE IN DEPOSIT AMOUNT TO FILE AN APPEAL BEFORE HON’BLE SUPREME COURT:

Second Proviso to Section 67 of the New Act provides that no appeal by a person who is required to pay any amount in terms of an order of the National Commission shall be entertained by the Supreme Court unless that person has deposited fifty percent. of that amount in the manner as may be prescribed.

Whereas, Second Proviso to Section 23 of the Old Act provides that no appeal by a person who is required to pay any amount in terms of an order of the National Commission shall be entertained by the Supreme Court unless that person has deposited in the prescribed manner fifty percent. of that amount or rupees fifty thousand, whichever is less.

 

POWER TO DECLARE ANY TERMS OF CONTRACT AS NULL AND VOID:

Section 49(2) and 59(2) of the New Act gives powers to the State Commission and National Commission respectively to declare any terms of the contract, which is unfair to any consumer, to be null and void. 

POWER OF REVISION:

The power of revision can still be exercised by National Commission under Section 58(1)(b) of the New Act and by State commission under section 47(1)(b) of the New Act.

Section 47(1)(b) of the New Act: Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the State Commission shall have jurisdiction to call for the records and pass appropriate orders in any consumer dispute which is pending before or has been decided by any District Commission within the State, where it appears to the State Commission that such District Commission has exercised a jurisdiction not vested in it by law, or has failed to exercise a jurisdiction so vested or has acted in exercise of its jurisdiction illegally or with material irregularity. 

Section 58(1)(b) of the New Act: Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the National Commission shall have jurisdiction to call for the records and pass appropriate orders in any consumer dispute which is pending before or has been decided by any State Commission where it appears to the National Commission that such State Commission has exercised a jurisdiction not vested in it by law, or has failed to exercise a jurisdiction so vested, or has acted in the exercise of its jurisdiction illegally or with material irregularity.

 

ENFORCEMENT OF ORDERS OF DISTRICT COMMISSION, STATE COMMISSION, AND NATIONAL COMMISSION: 

Section 71 of the New Act states the power of execution as provided Under Order XXI, The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 with such limitation as provided in the section.

Every order made by a District Commission, State Commission or the National Commission shall be enforced by it in the same manner as if it were a decree made by a Court in a suit before it and the provisions of Order XXI of the First Schedule to the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 shall, as far as may be, applicable, subject to the modification that every reference therein to the decree shall be construed as a reference to the order made under this Act. 

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