Buying a vehicle through installments may have its perks for certain consumers that it marked its way as a common payment method in the business. But for some enterprises, it has become the sole means of sale and is a trend that has seen an increased proliferation in recent years, albeit to the ire of those who are not keen on it.
In response to this complaint, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has issued the Department Administrative Order (DAO) No. 21-03, otherwise known as the Guidelines for Payment Options on the Purchase of Consumer Products and Services.
The crux of the pro-consumer rule is essential to give customers the “right to choose” and therefore mandates commercial enterprises, particularly those in the vehicular sector, to provide options in terms of mode of payments.
Consequently, in light of the enforcement of the new guideline, affected businesses are prohibited from engaging their dealings on an “installment-only” basis. In addition, it also demands that any transaction involving payment be conducted in an open view within the establishment’s premises and must be done so in a manner that is apprehensive to the buyer.
As per the Consumer Act, anyone who violates will be sanctioned with imprisonment for a duration of five months to a full year or be fined Php500 or Php10,000, or even both.