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What does the OFT (Office of Fair Trading) logo represent?

Last Edit: 17/09/18

Update: This article is a historical document (answer/advice), the OFT (Office of Fair Trading) was dissolved in 2014 and replaced by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The OFT (Office of Fair Trading) logo represents a code of conduct for traders in the UK. The purpose of the code is to offer businesses a way to adhere to a higher level of consumer protection than the law of the UK currently provides. An official source of the code is given at,

http://www.consumerdirect.gov.uk/before_you_buy/think_of/codes-of-practice

The basic premise of the code is to ensure that when a problem does arise, that the trader will do everything in their power to treat the customer fairly. Alongside that guideline, a superior level of customer service should be given, the business should also provide information about their service and products which is clearly defined and is customer friendly. But the meat of the code is in dealing with complaints. And the most practical of the rules is for a business to provide free or partially cover the cost of an arbitration case should the matter be unresolved.

One current problem with the code is it's lack of publicity. Most consumers probably do not know it exists, what the logo represents, or discover whether a business is signed up to the code or not (network members). TrustMark (http://www.trustmark.org.uk), is another government sponsored scheme, little known, but aims to provide consumers with a safety net when dealing with the building industry. The scheme currently has 16,442 tradesmen signed up to the scheme, which is similar to the OFT Approved logo, a code to provide consumers with additional peace of mind, and are able to 'buy with confidence'.