Consumer Protection Act, (CPA/COPRA) - 1986

Consumer protection act
  • For the first time in India, the Consumer Protection Act 1986 provided consumers a forum for speedy redressal of their grievances against medical services.
  • According to this act, the decision should be taken within 3-6 months.
  • There is no court fee payment and the person can plead his own case.
  • Recently even ESI hospitals have been brought within the ambit of this act.
  • COPRA is a piece of comprehensive legislation and recognizes six rights of consumer:-
  1. Right to safety
  2. Right to be informed
  3. Right to choose
  4. Right to be heard
  5. Right to seek redressal
  6. Right to consumer education
  • For medical negligence, complain can be given to MCI or can be filed in consumer court.
  • MCI can take disciplinary action, e.g. temporary or permanent cancellation of registration of concerned doctor. But, MCI cannot punish a doctor or give a compensation. Consumer courts give compensation. The limits of consumer courts are:-
  1. District consumer court → Up to Rs. 20 lacs.
  2. State commission → Rs. 20 lacs to Rs. 1 crore.
  3. National commission → Above Rs. 1 crore.
Exam Question
  • Consumer protection act was passed in 1986
  • Consumer protection act includes Decision within 3-6 months & Right to safety act
  • Consumer protection act applies to all goods and services
  • Maximum amount that can be received under the Consumer Protection Act is > 100 lakhs
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