Mandatory Information Requirement For Online Traders

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As of 15 February 2016, consumers are able to present disputes with any online trader based in the EU to the online dispute resolution (‘ODR’) platform (http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/odr).

The ODR platform is a web-based platform specifically designed to help consumers who have a dispute arising out of an online purchase for goods or services. After receiving information about the dispute, the ODR will transmit the dispute to an Alternative Dispute Resolution body that complies with the quality requirements already established by the EU.

The Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes (Competent Authorities and Information) Regulations 2015 has brought about a requirement for online traders to disclose certain information on their websites, in email offers and in their terms and conditions about the ODR platform. There is a requirement to provide contact email addresses and an easily accessible web link to the ODR platform, which is intended to ensure broad consumer awareness of the existence of the ODR platform to try and encourage out-of-court settlements.

This requirement applies to all online marketplaces and all traders established in the EU who take orders for goods and services from consumers either on a website or any other electronic means. It does not apply to those websites which are used only to display the goods and services.

It is recommended that online traders ensure they have made the relevant references to the ODR platform and ensure that they bring their terms and conditions up to date. For more on the information requirements or the ODR platform itself, please do not hesitate to contact either John Pickervance or Ismaeel Waseem by email or on 0800 689 0831.

Ismaeel Waseem

About Ismaeel Waseem

Ismaeel Waseem is a Solicitor in the Corporate & Restructuring team at Forbes Solicitors. Ismaeel’s blogs cover the drafting of commercial contracts including, amongst others, those for the provision of both goods and services (including both business to business and business to consumer contracts); commercial agency and franchisee agreements; manufacturing and distribution; sport and charities. Ismaeel also writes on the identification, protection and exploitation of intellectual property and on a variety of IT issues.
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