EU ‘general clauses’ on fairness offer significant potential for improved consumer protection. However, the Supreme Court has interpreted the unfair terms general clause and a related provision by reference to an underlying ethic of self interest and self reliance’; and the same approach is possible under the unfair practices general clauses. This is a significant threat to consumer protection. A more protective ethic may be intended at EU level; and a particular line of argument may be needed to persuade the Supreme Court of this.
Chris Willett, General Clauses and the Competing Ethics of European Consumer Law in the UK. The Cambridge Law Journal, 71 , pp 412–440