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Case detail



Directive article Article 6 1. (d)
Article 6 2.
National ID Prescription of the Estonian Consumer Protection Board of 2 April 2013 No 6-25/12-03378-001
Country Estonia Decision date 02/04/2013
Common name OÜ OX Eesti Decision type Administrative decision, first degree
Court Tarbijakaitseamet Plaintiff(s) Tarbijakaitseamet
Court translation Estonian Consumer Protection Board Defendant(s) OÜ OX Eesti
Subject deceiving commercial practice
Keywords deliverydelivery chargesfalse informationmisleading priceprice information

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Headnote

Charging a postal fee per package in a multi-package which is delivered in one delivery, constitutes an unfair commercial practice.

Facts

Consumers had bought coupons from coupon portals to receive photo printing services from the defendant at a discounted price (the announcement mentioned a price reduction of 44%).

Consumers who bought several coupons had to pay the postal fee separately for the delivery of the photos printed for each coupon.

Although the consumers had to pay a separate postal fee for each order, the different orders were delivered in the same package. The actual postal fees for the defendant were not dependent on the size of the package.

Therefore, when delivering multiple orders in the same package, the defendant had to pay only one postal fee, while charging multiple postal fees from consumers.
 

Legal issue

Does charging a postal fee per package in a multi-package which is delivered in one delivery, constitute an unfair commercial practice?

Decision

According to the court, informing consumers that separate postal fees are payable for each separate order creates the impression that the products will be delivered in separate packages and that charging the additional postal fee is justified.

Charging consumers with certain service fees without providing the respective services in return (i.e. separate deliveries for which a postal fee is paid), so the court held, amounts to providing misleading information about the essential characteristics of the service.

In addition, the court held that charging the additional postal fees, deceives consumers about the scope of the actual discount enjoyed, as the discount is in reality not as it was advertised (namely 44%) for the consumers who placed multiple orders.

Based on the foregoing, the court held that the defendant had indulged in unfair and prohibited commercial practices to the detriment of consumers’ interests.
 

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Result

The court issued a precept to the defendant ordering it to cease the unfair commercial practice and to refrain from such practices in the future.

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