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					Law Enforcement in the EU
                 Tamás Molnár
           The European Commission
  Directorate General for Health and Consumers


                ODR Conference

              Vienna. / 29-30 March 2010
    Proportion      of   consumers   that   complaines
                                       (2005 Feb +12 months)

Source: Special
Protection in the
Internal Market,
June 2006 (p31)
The last decade is a success story in the
            EU – New laws
New horizontal legislations
  E-commerce Directive
  Unfair Commercial Practices Directive
  The European Small Claims Regulation

New sectoral legislations
  Air Services Regulation
The last decade is a success story in the EU
           – Dispute Resolution
Individual complaints/claims
  European Consumer Centres (60.000+ cases/year)
  ADR Recommendations / Hundreds of schemes
  500.000 ADR cases in 2008 (+25% over 2006)
  European Small Claims procedure

Collective Redress
  Currently evaluated
  CPC Enforcement cooperation
To defend the collective interest of
consumers (no redress/individual)
Only cross border practices
Network of national enforcement authorities
1.500 participants
30 countries
         How the network operates
Day-to-day business
  Alerts (216)
  Investigations (490)
  Measure taking to stop infringing practices (525)
Plan activities in advance
   (Annual Enforcement Action Plans)
  Common activities
  Exchange of officials
  New forms of cooperation (Expert groups)
Applicable Directive(Enforcement requests – since Dec 2006)                              Nbr of cases

Council Directive 84/450/EEC misleading advertising                                                 33

Council Directive 85/577/EEC contracts negotiated away from business premises                           8

Council Directive 90/314/EEC package travel, package holiday and package tours                          1

Council Directive 93/13/EEC unfair terms in consumer contracts                                      41

Directive 1999/44/EC sale of consumer goods and associated guarantees                               17

Directive 2000/31/EC electronic commerce                                                          119
Directive 2001/83/EC medicinal products for human use                                               13

Directive 2002/65/EC distance marketing of consumer financial services                                  3

Directive 2005/29/EC on Unfair Commercial Practices                                               195
Directive 97/55/EC    misleading advertising so as to include comparative advertising                   3

Directive 97/7/EC               distance contracts                                                 68
Directive 98/6/EC    indication of prices                                                           10

Regulation (EC) No 261/2004 denied boarding and cancellation or long delay of flights               14

                                                                                  Sum:            525
2009 SWEEP on electronic goods

28 CPC members participated in the 1st phase
369 websites were checked altogether
206 (56%) websites require further investigation:
  176 national cases
  30 CPC cases, out of which 2 coordination cases
The great majority of MS checked between 10 – 20
Mystery shopping exercise
     Detected potential breaches
Most frequent irregularities found in the 2009 Sweep:

  Inaccurate info concerning buyers rights, e.g. right of
  withdrawal, right to the legal guarantee: 131 websites (36%
  of total number of websites checked)
  Incomplete info about the total cost: 96 websites (25%)
  Missing contact details of the trader: 65 websites (18%)
  No information on extra delivery cost where it could be
  calculated in advance: 30 websites (8%)
European Consumer Centres Network
                  THE ECC Network
  A one-stop shop network to assist consumers experiencing
problems with cross- border transactions in the Internal Market
   Rights / Language / Advise
   No representation before courts!

  27 Member States, plus Norway and Iceland

  60.000 + contacts with consumers a year
   Average claim: 560 Euro

  BUT only 1% goes to ADR systems
   Information / Language / Cost / Compliance by business
 Regulation 861/2007 - The European
      Small Claims procedure
Civil and commercial cross border matters
The value of a claim < 2000 €.
The procedure applies to pecuniary claims as well as to non-
pecuniary claims.
   Written procedure: standard forms to be used
   Time limits for the parties and for the court – less than 4
The court may hold a hearing or take evidence through a
video conference or other communications technology if the
technical means are available.
No legal representation is required - evidence through
written statements of witnesses, experts or parties.
 Regulation 861/2007 - The European
      Small Claims procedure
The unsuccessful party shall bear the costs of the
   However, the court shall not award costs to the
   successful party to the extent that they were
   unnecessarily incurred or disproportionate to the claim.
The judgment shall be enforceable notwithstanding any
possible appeal. The provision of a security shall not be
The Regulation abolishes the intermediate measures to
enable the recognition and enforcement of a judgement.
   A judgment shall be recognised and enforced in another
   Member State automatically and without any possibility
   of opposing its recognition.
Thank you!

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