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Hugh Collins

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Relevant research

(2004) H. Collins, ‘EC Regulation of Unfair Commercial Practices’, in H. Collins (ed), The Forthcoming EU Directive on Unfair Commercial Practices: Contract, Consumer and Competition Law (The Hague: Kluwer Law International) 1-42, esp. pp. 36-39.

(2005) H. Collins, ‘The Unfair Commercial Practices Directive’, 1 European Review of Contract Law 417-441, esp. pp. 424-27.

(2009) H. Collins, A Private Right of Redress for Unfair Commercial Practices: A Report for Consumer Focus (London: Consumer Focus) 41pp., available at: (evidence of at least 2* quality: national and international scholars’ reliance on the research at e.g. Cambridge Companion to European Private Law (2010), 242; [2012] Erasmus L. R. 237; European Private Law (de Gruyter, 2011), 137 (G. Howells)).

(2010) H. Collins, ‘Harmonisation by Example: European Laws against Unfair Commercial Practices’, 73 Modern Law Review 89-118, esp. pp. 113-17.

Evidence of impact

Consumer Focus, Waiting to be heard: Giving consumers the right of redress over Unfair Commercial Practices (August 2009) p 3, available at:

Consumer Redress for Misleading and Aggressive Practices (2011) Law Commission Consultation Paper No 199; Scottish Law Commission Discussion Paper No 149, available at:

Consumer Redress for Misleading and Aggressive Practices Law Com No 332/ Scot Law Com No 226, CM8323 (2012).

Department for Business, Innovation & Skills, Press release: New powers to protect vulnerable and elderly consumers against rogue traders (6 August 2013), at:

 “In a 2009 Consumer Focus [i.e., Collins’s] report, Consumer Focus calculated that the total detriment suffered by consumers as a result of misleading and aggressive practices was around £3.3 billion a year…. Despite the high standards exhibited by the vast majority of businesses, there are traders who seek to exploit consumers. Misleading and aggressive practices are a particular problem for vulnerable and elderly consumers, for example, when they fall victim to misleading or aggressive doorstep sales techniques…. We want consumers to be confident to shop with a range of traders and to drive rogues out of business. The new rights announced today will mean consumers are entitled to the same level of protection whether they are purchasing goods or services online, at home or in a shop…. [T]he reforms to consumer law will enhance consumer rights and make them easier to understand and help businesses interpret and apply the law.”


The Director of International Policy Advocacy, Consumer Focus:

“We commissioned Hugh, as an expert in the field, to write a report analysing the legal arguments to help us with building the case and that was very helpful.”

Law Commission team lawyer:

 “We used Hugh’s research at the very beginning in our scoping exercise on whether there was a problem and figuring out what it was. It definitely fed into what we did and was very useful. He identified a lot of problems and we quote him in our consultation papers…. He also helped us along the way, meeting to discuss the issue and had the idea to pull together people from different backgrounds for the consultation workshop using his contacts…. The workshop was a big opportunity for everyone to discuss our initial proposals on reforming consumer law…. We had a good spread of people from academia, industry and government. Bringing together all these people who have very different perspectives gave everyone a better understanding of where other people were coming from…. In terms of the proposals themselves, we are in the process of writing a report and we have definitely taken into account the views expressed. It was the most important event during the consultation phase and it was the only public event where people could engage and give us feedback orally.”

 English Law Commissioner for commercial and common law:

“[T]he teams here and in Scotland very much appreciated the opportunity to debate our proposals on redress with such a distinguished set of speakers and knowledgeable audience [at the Reforming the Private Law of Unfair Commercial Practices Workshop, Monday 23 May 2011, LSE]…. The workshop produced some strongly held views on both sides of that debate which we will be reflecting in our consultation process…. I am certain that the workshop has encouraged a wider response to our consultation.”

Relevant video and audio:

Contingency in the Deep Legal Structure of Market Societies – presentation at University of London (2014):

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