Enforcement – FAQ
1. What are the offences under the Direct Sales Act and Anti-Pyramid Scheme 1993?
Offences by any person who carry on any direct sales business includes:-
- Does not possess a valid direct sales licence
- Failure to comply with any conditions imposed in the licence by the Controller
- Calling at any premises for the purpose of negotiating door-to-door sales other than such days and between such hours as may be permitted.
- Failure to produce the National Registration Identification Cards (NRIC) and authority card whilst conducting door-to-door sales.
- Taking deposits in the cooling-off period.
- Promoting pyramid scheme
2.What is meant by “door to door sale”?
“Door-to-door sale” means the sale of goods or services by any person who goes from place to place, not being a fixed place of business; or makes telephone calls, seeking out persons who may be prepared to enter as purchasers, into contracts for the sale of goods or services and subsequently enters into negotiations with those prospective purchasers with a view to the making of such contracts.
3.What is meant by “cooling-off period” in the context of direct sales business?
It is a duration of ten working days given to a prospective buyer to reconsider whether or not to proceed with the purchase specified in a direct selling contract. During this duration, no goods or services can be supplied or provided nor any deposit be taken by any party.
4.Where can we get information regarding any companies conducting direct sales business?
Information can be obtained from the Domestic Trade Division, Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism or from the Ministry’s website.
5.What is the Festive Season Price-Controlled Scheme?
The Festive Season Price-Controlled Scheme is a scheme to determine the maximum prices of essential festive goods at the wholesale and retail level within a specified duration, during Chinese New Year, Harvest Festival, Gawai, Hari Raya Puasa, Deepavali and Christmas. The Scheme is devised to protect consumers against profiteering.
6.What are the benefits of displaying price tags to consumers?
With price tags consumers are aware of prices and have the opportunity to make comparisons before any purchase. Consumers can avoid being cheated and be able to make better choices.
7.What is meant by hire-purchase?
Hire-purchase is a hiring of goods with an option to purchase the goods. Payments are made in the form of instalments. You are the hirer and the financial institution is the owner. Ownership will be transferred to the hirer once all the instalments have been paid.
8.What important information should there be in the hire-purchase agreement?
Every hire-purchase agreement must contain the following important information:
- Description of the goods
- Calculation of the amounts to be paid
- Minimum deposit
- Terms charges and annual percentage rate for term charges.
- Late payment charges
- Commencement date of the hire-purchase
- The number of instalments
- The amounts of the monthly instalments
9.Is it an offence if the hirer removes hired goods without the knowledge of the owner (finance company)?
Yes, it is an offence under Section 37 Hire-Purchase Act (HPA) 1967.
10.Is it an offence if the hirer sells goods under the hire-purchase agreement without the knowledge of the owner (financial company)?
Yes, it is an offence under Section 38 HPA 1967.
11.What are the goods that can be bought under a hire-purchase agreement?
The goods that can be bought under a hire-purchase agreement are specified in the First Schedule, HPA 1967:
- All consumer goods (purchased for personal, family or for household use only);
- All motor vehicles, namely
- Invalid carriages;
- Motor cars, including taxi cabs and hire cars;
- Goods Vehicles (where the maximum permissible laden weight does not exceed 2,540 kilograms);
- Buses, including stage buses
12.What are the rights of the owner (financial company) under the Hire Purchase Act 1967?
The owner (financial company), has the right to:
- Impose on the hirer to insure the motor vehicle
- Impose on the hirer to furnish a guarantor
- Collect a minimum 10% cash deposit including the booking fee.
- Repossess the goods if the hirer defaults in making payments.
- Notify the hirer the intention to repossess by issuing the Fourth Schedule (21 days)
- Repossess the goods with a court order if the instalments paid are more than 75% of the total cash price of the goods.
- Appoint a person with a permit issued by the MDTCC to undertake repossession of goods in a hire-purchase agreement.
- Impose charges on the hirer if the hirer fails to comply with the terms and conditions stipulated in the hire-purchase agreement. Eg: Late payment chargers, repossession fee, storage cost, etc.
- Dispose of the goods repossessed after the expiry of 21 days (Fifth Schedule)
- Auction of goods 14 days after the issuance of an auction notice.
13.What are the hirer’s rights under the Hire Purchase Act 1967?
The Hirer is entitle to:-
- Receive a copy of the hire-purchase agreement.
- Obtain any information regarding hire-purchase account.
- Request statement of outstanding balance (once every 3 months).
- Make an early settlement.
- Terminate the hire-purchase agreement at any time.
- Opt to choose the term charges (fixed /variable rate)
- Received the Second Schedule before signing the hire-purchase agreement.
- Receive a copy of the hire-purchase agreement within 21 days after the making of the agreement.
- Receive a rebate for early settlement.
- Not sign any agreement or document which has not been duly completed.
- Request in writing to the owner for the registration certificate of the motor vehicle.
- Receive the used car inspection report.
- Introduce a new buyer for the goods upon repossession.
- Receive the balance of the sales/auction proceeds, (if any).
14.What are the procedures before the repossession of goods under a hire purchase agreement?
Before repossessing any goods, the owner must sent the following notices:
- Fourth Schedule Notice – This is a 21 day written notice stating the owner’s intention to repossess.
- Fourteen days after the date of the notice, a reminder notice will be issued to notify the hirer that the owner intends to repossess the goods after the expiry of the notice set in the said Fourth Schedule.
15.What action can a hirer undertake upon receiving the above notices?
- The Hirer may pay the amounts due as stated in the notice of the Fourth Schedule before the expiry of 21 days as stated in the notice.
- The Hirer may return the goods to the owner (financial company) before the expiry of the 21 days notice of the Fourth Schedule. The Hirer will be required to settle the remaining balance, if any.
16.When may the owner exercise his right to take back the goods under a hire-purchase agreement?
The owner may repossess the goods hired to the hirer, if:
- The hirer defaults two consecutive instalment payments, or
- The hirer defaults to pay the last instalment; or
- The hirer is deceased and there is a default of four successive instalment payments.
17.What are the offences under the Consumer Protection Act 1999?
Offences under the Consumer Protection Act 1999 include :-
- Making a false or misleading representation of goods or services.
- Making a false or misleading representation or other misleading conduct in relation to land.
- Giving a misleading indication as to the price at which the goods or services are available.
- Bait advertising of goods or services with the intention of not supplying the goods or services at the price offered
- Not providing gifts, free offers etc as offered.
- Failing to comply with the award made by the Consumer Claims Tribunal
18.What information does the operator of a motor vehicle workshop needs to disclose in respect of spare parts and repair services?
The operator of a motor vehicle workshop shall disclose a list of
- spare parts available for sale in the workshop. The list shall-
- describe every spare part by name, serial number, motor vehicle model and manufacturer,
- state whether the spare part is new, second-hand or reconditioned and
- state the price at which the spare part is available for sale to consumers.
- repair services provided by the workshop and the list shall –
- describe every repair service provided by the workshop,
- state the labour fee charged, and
- state the taxes payable for every repair service, if any
19.What information does the operator of a workshop needs to disclose to each customer before and after completion of a repair service?
Before undertaking any repair service, the operator of a workshop shall provide the customer with a written statement in the national language or English or both–
- describing the repair service which is expected to be made to the motor vehicle,
- stating the estimated labour fee to be charged,
- stating the estimated taxes payable ; and
- stating the estimated time of completion of the repair service.
Upon completion of the repair service, the operator of the workshop shall provide a written statement to the customer-
- describing the repair service made to the motor vehicle,
- stating the labour fee charged,
- stating the taxes payable, if any,
- describing every spare part installed by name, serial number, motor vehicle model and manufacturer,
- stating whether the spare parts installed are new, second-hand or reconditioned, and
- stating the price of each of the parts installed.
All prices quoted in the lists must be in Malaysian Ringgit