Wednesday, 2 September 2015

European consumers are a step closer to resolving their disputes online

In 2013 the Commission adopted the ADR Directive and the ODR Regulation. These acts aimed at creating opportunities for European consumer to resolve their disputes out-of-court in a simple, fast and low cost manner, covering online and offline, domestic and cross-border disputes (see our summaries here). Online out-of-court dispute resolution is made possible by the ODR Regulation that foresees the establishment of the EU-wide online platform. The platform is to help consumers solve their disputes online that arise from online sales or service contracts by directing the dispute to the appropriate national ADR entity (established base on and/or complying with the requirements of the ADR Directive in Member States) and providing additional services such as translation. The ADR entities should already be in place (the latest from the 9 July 2015), and the ODR platform is to become operational on 9 January 2016. In order to ensure uniform conditions for the implementation of the ODR Regulation, the Commission has recently adopted an implementing act. The Commission Implementing Regulation 2015/1015 sets out the modalities for: 1) the electronic complaint form, 2) the exercise of the functions of the ODR platform and 3) the cooperation between the ODR contact points in Member States. With this act European consumers came a step closer to resolving their disputes online.

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