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proposed revision of eu consumer protection October 9, 2008

Posted by Bradley in : Uncategorized , trackback

Shopping doesn’t seem to be most people’s top priority in current market conditions. But perhaps this means that it is a good time to think about consumer protection. The Commission published yesterday a new proposed consumer protection directive to collect and revise existing EU consumer protection rules. The proposal is designed as a “full harmonisation” measure. Article 4 states:

Member States may not maintain or introduce, in their national law, provisions diverging from those laid down in this Directive, including more or less stringent provisions to ensure a different level of consumer protection.

This is supposed to mean that traders can use the same contract terms in all Member States. At the same time consumer protection is increased in some respects. There are new lists of banned terms in consumer contracts (a black list) and of terms which are presumed to be unfair (a grey list). The proposal has some relevance to financial services, but does not apply to circumstances covered by the Distance Marketing of Financial Services Directive or the Consumer Credit Directive.

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