Commercial and Consumer Law 2

Part B: Marking and Assessment
(to be completed by Module Lecturer)

Assessment Task (3000 words):

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Ismail recently moved into the third floor of a high rise council building in Pontyberry, South Wales. Through an online retailer XO.com, Ismail bought a new fridge-freezer manufactured by COOLPOINT to be used in his kitchen. The new fridge-freezer was delivered and installed within 48 hours.

Five days later, the fridge-freezer started to make funny noises with burnt plastic smell from the back of it. Ismail contacted XO.com immediately. The customer service of XO.com assured him that the noise and smell were normal because the product was new. They kept Ismail’s details and asked him to keep the fridge-freezer away from the wall for at least 1 metre. Ismail’s kitchen in the council flat was too small so he could not follow the instruction.

A week later, Ismail was out visiting a friend in the same building. In the meantime, Ismail’s new fridge-freezer caught fire. Consequently, the building was burnt down. Ismail and his friend fortunately escaped the fire but more than 100 persons in the same building lost their lives. According to the investigation report, the origin of the fire was Ismail’s newly purchased COOLPOINT fridge-freezer from XO.com. It was later found out that this was not an independent incident. Reportedly there were already 250 similar cases of fridge-freezer catching fire in the UK involving the same model.

According to the investigation report, the back panel of Ismail’s COOLPOINT fridge-freezer was made of plastic. COOLPOINT was the British subsidiary of WHITEHOUSE, a US conglomerate of electronic products with a global presence. In the US, health and safety regulations prohibited any plastic back panel for fridge-freezers. In the UK, however, there was no such prohibition.

Answer the following questions:

a) You are a Trading Standard Officer in Pontyberry. Please advise any possible actions you might take against XO.com and COOLPOINT.
b) You work in the Citizen Advice bureau. Advise Ismail as to any product safety claims he might have in regard to the damages caused by his COOLPOINT fridge-freezer.
c) You are a lawyer representing some of the affected citizens in this fire. Advise Ismail regarding collective action against XO.com, COOLPOINT and WHITEHOUSE.

(100 marks)

Learning Outcomes to be assessed:

• To identify the legal and conceptual frameworks applicable to the study of law

• Conduct effective research into the law making process and collate and constructively discriminate amongst independent sources.

• To demonstrate the skills learnt to undertake independent legal research.

Grading Criteria:

A copy of the LLM Marking Criteria can be found on VLE under the section of ‘Rubrics’ tab.

Feedback/feed-forward (linked to assessment criteria):
• Areas where you have done well:

• Feedback from this assessment to help you to improve future assessments:

• Other comments

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