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Case detail



Directive article Article 6 1. (d)
National ID Cour d''Appel de Bruxelles 3 May 2011
Country Belgium Decision date 03/05/2011
Common name Cour d''Appel de Bruxelles 3 May 2011 Decision type Court decision in appeal
Court Cour d''Appel de Bruxelles Plaintiff(s) Public Ministry
Court translation Brussels'' Court of Appeal Defendant(s) Mobaxis NV
Subject price
Keywords material informationmisleading priceomissionprice informationseasonal sales

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Headnote

Not mentioning the price of products in a point of sale constitutes a misleading commercial practice.

Facts

During inspections conducted by the control cell of the plaintiff, several points of sale of the defendant, a furniture store, were visited. During those inspections, the general sales conditions, advertising campaigns, terms of the order forms as well as the announced prices were investigated. As a result of these investigations, it was amongst others established that defendant had omitted to visibly and legibly indicate the prices of the products offered for sale in the shop.

In its defense, the defendant had stated that prices were not indicated on products offered for sale in the shop as the defendant considered this to be a barrier for the consumer to take a decision, and, also, that the intention was to give the client information on all possibilities that existed (e.g. price in relation to advance paid, reductions based on number of items purchased, etc.) so that he should always address the sales personnel in the shop.
 

Legal issue

Does not mentioning the price of products in a point of sale constitute a misleading commercial practice?

Decision

According to the court, the disputed practice resulted in the consumer not being able to see the price of the products at first sight, making it impossible for him to know the price unless after asking a salesman in the shop, after which this salesman would calculate the applicable price depending on several factors such as the availability in stock, the amount of advance paid, etc.

As a result, the court ruled, it is impossible for the client to know the price when entering the shop and this price can only be obtained after negotiations with sales personnel. This infringes consumer legislation and the obligation to indicate prices in a clear manner.

The court concluded that this price indication mechanism is contrary to the prohibition on misleading commercial practices.
 

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Result

The plaintiff's request was granted.

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