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What are my rights if a salesperson knocks on my door?

Unsolicited Consumer Agreements


Unsolicited consumer agreements are made when a business or their agent, outside their place of business, approaches you without your invitation:

· A salesperson sells you something door to door.

· A telemarketer calls you without you asking them to.

· A salesperson approaches you in the common area of a shopping centre and invites you to come back to their stall.


If you are sold a good or service that costs more than $100 or has an undetermined price, in any of these ways, there is law that protects you if something goes wrong.


A salesperson has knocked on my door, do I have to let them in?


You do not have to let a salesperson into your home just because they knock on your door. It is okay to say to them “I do not want to talk to you, please leave.” This is not being rude.


When can a door to door salesperson visit?


A door to door salesperson cannot visit you:

· On Sundays or public holidays.

· Before 9am and after 6pm on weekdays.

· Before 9am and after 5pm on Saturdays.



A telemarketer cannot call you:

· On Sundays or public holidays.

· Before 9am and after 8pm on weekdays.

· Before 9am and after 5pm on Saturdays.


These hours apply to all door to door or telemarketing sales, even if the agreement is worth less than $100.


What if I am not comfortable speaking to them to ask them to leave?


You should obtain a Do Not Knock sticker from the Office of Fair Trading or your local services. If you have a Do Not Knock Sticker posted on your front door, it is only charities and religious groups and political parties who can still knock on your door.


Door to door sellers must not approach any residence displaying a do-not-knock notice.


What must a door to door salesman disclose to me?


A door to door salesman must:

· Explain upfront the purpose of their visit

· Produce their identification

· Inform you that you can ask them to leave at any time

· Leave the premises if you ask them to do so

· Explain your cooling-off rights

· Provide you a form to exercise those rights if you enter into an agreement


What happens if I invite a salesperson into my home and then I do not want to talk to them anymore?


If you invite a door to door salesperson into your home, you are entitled to ask them to leave at any time. If you ask them to leave, they cannot return for 30 days. If they do not leave when you ask them to, they are in breach of the law.


What are my rights if I buy something from a Door to Door Salesperson?


If you sign a contract to buy something from a door to door salesperson, you have a 10-business day cooling off period. That means if you change your mind about buying the good or service, you can end the contract within 10 business days without having to give the company a reason.


How do I let the company know that I am ending the contract?


You should give the company notice in writing by email or by a letter sent to the company by Registered Post. This will mean you have a written record of ending the contract.


The salesperson did not tell me I have a cooling off period, what are my rights then?


If the salesperson did not tell you about the cooling off period, then the cooling off period will be extended to 6 months. If this happens please seek legal advice.


There are other requirements that a salesperson has to follow. If they do not follow these requirements the cooling off period can be extended to either 3 or 6 months. Please seek legal advice if you have any concerns about a door to door salesperson.


Do I have to pay for the goods during the cooling off period?


The salesperson is not allowed to:

· supply goods, except for those valued under $500

· supply any services at all, regardless of value

· take any payment or deposit, even if they supplied the goods


What are my rights if the salesperson leaves the goods in the cooling-off period?


You do not own any goods unless you have paid for them. This is the case even if the business has already supplied them. If you choose to cancel the agreement within the cooling-off period, you must:

· keep the goods in good condition

· make them reasonably available for the business to collect.

The business must collect the goods within 30 days of you cancelling your order.

Otherwise, you may keep them free of charge


Do these rules apply to other salespeople?


The same cooling off period of 10 business days and similar rules apply when you buy goods from a salesperson who approaches you in the common area of a shopping centre or if a telemarketer rings you up without you asking them to.


The cooling off period does not apply if you approach a stall or shop in a shopping centre.


You should seek legal advice about these issues.


Does a cooling-off period apply for emergency repairs?


The cooling-off period does not apply for emergency repairs. This is only for when the federal or state government have declared a state of emergency.


It can only be about fixing:

· a hazard or potential hazard

· a health and safety risk

· a risk of serious damage to your property.

For example. A builder may offer to fix your roof after a cyclone. However they still need a current Queensland or Commonwealth licence (such as Builder’s or contractor’s licence)



As part of entering a raffle I agreed to let a company contact me, they say there is no cooling off period?


Providing your contact details as part of a raffle does not mean the company can avoid providing you with a cooling off period if they contact you by phone or knock on your door.


Where can I get help if I have a problem with a company or I can’t talk to a company on my own?


You can get help by calling:

· Legal Aid Queensland on 1300 65 11 88.

· a financial counsellor on 1800 007 007.

· Office of Fair Trading on 13 74 68.


Itinerant traders

Be wary of itinerant traders who travel from door to door seeking work. Itinerant traders have no fixed address, but instead move around so they can target new towns and suburbs. Itinerant traders aim many of their operations at older people, who may have trouble maintaining their homes. If you are approached by somebody you think might be an itinerant trader:

  • ask to see a Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) licence (formerly the Queensland Building Services Authority)

  • do not pay for anything upfront (even materials)

  • decline any offer to drive you to your bank

  • demand a receipt with the trader's name and street address on it.

Itinerant traders will try to convince you to hire their services on the spot. This is illegal. All door-to-door salespeople must give you a cooling-off period of 10 business days to change your mind. They must not take any money during the cooling-off period. Nor can they begin any service during this time. They may try to convince you by:

  • telling you a hard-luck story

  • claiming to offer a good deal because they 'are in the area'

  • claiming they have products 'left over from another job'.

Do not employ any trader who does not have proper identification or contact details. Their work or the goods may not be satisfactory, and you will be unable to contact them to fix the job or provide a refund.

How to recognise an itinerant trader

Itinerant traders:

  • usually call uninvited

  • prefer cash payments

  • do not supply proper receipts or written contracts

  • can't show you their identification or a QBCC licence.

A good way to tell that a trader might be itinerant is by looking at their vehicle. Itinerant traders might:

  • drive a vehicle without clear business markings (such as sign-writing or decals)

  • drive a vehicle with easily removable business markings

  • be driving a rental vehicle

  • not have a vehicle in view at all.




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