OFT and Apple Agree ‘Fairer Terms’

November 30, 2009

Apple Inc has agreed to change their terms and conditions to make them clearer and fairer for consumers following concerns raised by the OFT.

Apple’s contracts set out terms which apply to consumers who buy from Apple and iTunes stores and download software from the web. The OFT identified terms in the agreements which raised concerns under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulation 1999. Following constructive discussions with the OFT, Apple has agreed to revise its standard conditions to ensure these:

  • do not exclude liability for faulty or mis-described goods
  • are consistent with consumer rights under the Distance Selling Regulations
  • are drafted in plain or intelligible language
  • do not potentially allow changes to be made to products and prices after an agreement is made.

Jason Freeman, Legal Director, OFT Consumer Markets Group, said:

‘The contract or terms of use between a company and a consumer, whether they are found online or on paper, must be clear, fair and easy to understand. In particular, it is important that consumers are given clear and accurate information about their consumer rights in case things go wrong. We have worked closely with Apple to secure these changes and we believe they will improve confidence and clarity for consumers.’