European Commission


Case detail

Directive article Article 6 1. (g)
National ID Ombudsman of the Consumer 3rd of November 2011 (Νo of protocol 9842)
Country Greece Decision date 03/11/2011
Common name Decision type Other
Court Συνήγορος του καταναλωτή Plaintiff(s)
Court translation Ombudsman of the Consumer Defendant(s) D.E.I. A.E.
Subject undue influence
Keywords coercionconsumer debtconsumer rightspaymentrights of the trader

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The practice of demanding payment from a consumer for debts caused by other consumers, constitutes an unfair commercial practice.


The Ombudsman of the Consumer issued a written recommendation following a report filed by a consumer against the defendant, an electricity supplier.
According to this report, the defendant asked from the consumer, through the electricity invoices aimed at the consumer, to pay the consumer's wife’s 3.677 euros debt to the defendant.
This debt resulted from another contract for the supply of electricity in another estate/building, which the wife of the consumer had signed with the defendant. The consumer, an unemployed, was obliged to accept the payment of this debt, asking for an arrangement in installments of two months. Since he could not deal with the arrangement made with the defendant for his wife’s debt, the defendant cut off the supply of electricity at the consumer’s house.

Legal issue

Does the practice of demanding payment from a consumer for debts caused by other consumers, constitute an unfair commercial practice? 


The Ombudsman held that the action of the defendant to ask from a consumer the payment of a debt that results from a distinct contract signed with another consumer, constitutes an unfair commercial practice.
According to the Ombudsman, the defendant’s action to cut off  the supply of the electricity at the consumer’s house due to his inability to pay the debt of the other consumer equally constituted an unfair commercial practice and the use of undue influence.

  URL Decision Decision full text


The Ombudsman of the Consumer ruled against the defendant.  

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