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Seminar Out-of-court resolution of consumer disputes Sava Centar, Belgrade, 27 -28 June 2013 Dr Seminar Out-of-court resolution of consumer disputes Sava Centar, Belgrade, 27 -28 June 2013 Dr Christine Riefa

Consumer dispute resolution landscape Public enforcement undertakings Criminal Courts Private Enforcement Civil Courts Small Consumer dispute resolution landscape Public enforcement undertakings Criminal Courts Private Enforcement Civil Courts Small claims Other Civil Courts Out-of-court Tribunals ADR ODR

From ADR to ODR • ODR Regulation is designed to work in conjunction with From ADR to ODR • ODR Regulation is designed to work in conjunction with the ADR Directive • Not a stand-alone piece of legislation • Caters for electronic commerce as well as mobile commerce transactions (mobile phone purchases)

Main features of Regulation on ODR for consumer disputes Goals? What disputes? How is Main features of Regulation on ODR for consumer disputes Goals? What disputes? How is ODR delivered?

An ODR Regulation – what for? • Achieve a high level of consumer protection An ODR Regulation – what for? • Achieve a high level of consumer protection • Contribute to functioning of internal market (including digital dimension) • Provide an ORD platform facilitating the independent, impartial, transparent, effective, fast and fair out-of-court resolution of consumer disputes between consumers and traders online – platform live end of 2015.

Types of disputes subject to ODR People Geography Electronic & Mobile Contracts Consumer National Types of disputes subject to ODR People Geography Electronic & Mobile Contracts Consumer National disputes Sales Trader (including marketplaces) Cross-border (2 legs only) Services

Main characteristics of the ODR platform User-friendly, interactive website Respect for privacy & confidentiality Main characteristics of the ODR platform User-friendly, interactive website Respect for privacy & confidentiality Available ‘Your Europe Portal’ Operated, financed and maintained by EU Commission Free of charge Official languages of the EU (translation by Commission)

Functions of the ODR Platform • • Provide electronic complaint form Inform respondent about Functions of the ODR Platform • • Provide electronic complaint form Inform respondent about complaint Identify competent ADR entity & transmit complaint Offer free electronic case management tool to enable conduct of ADR procedure through the ODR platform Provide translation of information necessary for resolution of dispute exchanged through platform Provide feedback system for the parties to comment on overall procedure Make available information about ADR processes, listed ADR entities, online guide to submitting complaints on ODR platform, information about national contact points, statistical data about outcomes. Information should be accurate, up-to-date and provided in a clear, understandable and easily accessible way.

Networks and contact points • Each MS designates one ODR contact point – Provides Networks and contact points • Each MS designates one ODR contact point – Provides support to resolution of disputes by facilitating communication, such as help with complaint form, information on functioning of ODR platform, etc. • ODR contact point can be ECC-Net, consumer association, or any other body • Each contact point shall host at least two ODR advisors • Cooperation network for contact points with twice a year meetings (organised by Commission)

Life of an ODR complaint Submission of complaint form Processing and transmission of complaint Life of an ODR complaint Submission of complaint form Processing and transmission of complaint Resolution of dispute

Submission of complaint form • Electronic complaint form • Contains all information sufficient to Submission of complaint form • Electronic complaint form • Contains all information sufficient to determine the competent ADR entity – Party is consumer or trader? – Name, email and geographical address of Consumer + same for trader – Details on complainant’s representative if any (including name, email and address + languages) – Language of respondent if known – Types of goods or services to which complaint relates – Form of order (website or other) – Price – Date of purchase – Has consumer made direct contact with trader? – Has the dispute previously been considered by an ADR entity or court? – Type of complaint and description – Any obligatory ADR entity

Processing and transmission of complaint Duly completed Complaint form completion on ODR platform Not Processing and transmission of complaint Duly completed Complaint form completion on ODR platform Not fully completed ODR platform transmit to the respondent Complaint cannot be processed until complete Parties agree on ADR platform Parties do not agree within 30 days – claim not processed

Processing and transmission of complaint ADR entity agrees to take on the case ADR Processing and transmission of complaint ADR entity agrees to take on the case ADR entity informs parties of procedural rules and costs ADR entity rejects case – end of ODR process Contact ODR advisor for information on other means of redress Parties agree on ADR platform

Processing and transmission of complaint ADR entity agrees to take on the case ADR Processing and transmission of complaint ADR entity agrees to take on the case ADR entity informs parties of procedural rules and costs Conduct of proceedings

Resolution of dispute Concludes procedure within 90 days Conduct of proceedings Can use ODR Resolution of dispute Concludes procedure within 90 days Conduct of proceedings Can use ODR platform to conduct proceedings but not obligatory Physical presence not required Communicates dates of receipt of file, type of complaint, date of conclusion of procedure to ODR platform

ODR in practice Challenges of consumer ODR Key factors to consider ODR in practice Challenges of consumer ODR Key factors to consider

Challenges of consumer ODR • ODR will rely on ADR entities • Some ODR Challenges of consumer ODR • ODR will rely on ADR entities • Some ODR procedures exist – build on existing model of ADR (mediation, conciliation, arbitration, etc) • Emerging forms – automated negotiation • Most noted providers (e. g. Square Trade, Mediateurs du Net. fr) have now closed • Critical mass and adequate co-ordination are main challenges

Key factors to consider • ODR cannot dispense from an efficient ADR system • Key factors to consider • ODR cannot dispense from an efficient ADR system • ODR can help deal with volume of dispute (with free case management tools) • ODR can help with translation costs in crossborder disputes • ODR can help leapfrog implementation issues and help boost e-commerce if dispute resolution is effective

Any questions? Christine. riefa@brunel. ac. uk Any questions? Christine. [email protected] ac. uk