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Plain English campaign news articles

Plain English at Halfords

Plain English Campaign welcomes a rare opportunity to applaud the motoring industry today when Halfords Autocentres launch their plain English ‘Glossary of garage speak'. This is the first guide of its kind in the motor industry to receive a Crystal Mark from Plain English Campaign.

The guide is a direct result of research carried out for the independent garage network. The research showed a high level of confusion linked to mechanical jargon and highlighted the need for simple and unpatronising language when dealing with motorists.

Read more: Plain English at Halfords

Gobbledygook on the BBC

On Monday 7 March at 7.30pm, BBC Inside Out East Midlands will be full of gobbledygook and jargon as BBC presenter John Holmes travels to Derbyshire for an update on the story of Plain English Campaign.

Read more: Gobbledygook on the BBC

Big steps to overcome the small print

Plain English Campaign are applauding the consumer contracts team at the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), the regulatory body for traders throughout the UK. The OFT's year-long study of unclear terms and conditions in consumer contracts covered a range of customer complaints about things such as contracts for gym membership and the small print involved in buying football clubs’ season tickets.

The findings from this year-long study revealed some new information, such as consumers being put off by the length of long-winded contracts. However, it confirmed our well-known fears about the unfairness of small print.

Read more: Big steps to overcome the small print

Power points for comparison

Plain English Campaign continue to fight for clearer information in energy bills. We were pleased to support the comparison website, www.uswitch.com, when they asked for our review of yearly energy statements. These statements are a regulatory requirement, laid down by Ofgem, for all energy providers to provide an individual statement to their customers that shows the customer's consumption and costs over the past 12 months. But the results of the uSwitch public survey show that some energy companies have been slow to meet this regulation, and those that are meeting it could do with improving the clarity of the statements.

Read more: Power points for comparison

Losing your will to live - plain English instead of legal jargon

Plain English Campaign have been watching the BBC 2 programme 'Can't take it with you' and clearly so have many other people, judging by the increase in queries received at the campaign office on the subject of wills and probate.
Let us know about any difficulties you have with understanding the wording of wills.

A few years ago, the outcry on this subject resulted in the Government calling for regulation among the growing number of will writers. Those without a valid legal qualification fall outside of the compensation currently available from The Law Society, in the event of disputes resulting from unclear will writing.

The Law Society are launching a campaign to press for better regulations in will writing. Plain English Campaign supports this and the need for plain English in all legal documents, wherever possible.

Read more: Losing your will to live - plain English instead of legal jargon

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