The Court of Justice: Guaranteeing the Rights of EU Consumers

The Court of Justice: Guaranteeing the Rights of EU Consumers

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The EU strives to achieve a high level of protection of consumers, and has adopted many laws designed to do just that. Sometimes however, the rules need clarification. That’s where the Court of Justice comes in. More and more of us are now shopping online But sometimes the products are not what we wanted or don’t fit or we simply change our mind. Thanks to a Court ruling, retailers must reimburse you not only the cost of the goods themselves, but also the delivery costs. Thereby guaranteeing your right to change your mind when buying online. The Court has also protected consumers from companies using premium rate telephone numbers. So, an after-care service line cannot cost more than a normal national phone call. Similarly, practices where consumers are told that they have won a prize and then have to call a premium rate number in order to claim their prize are illegal under EU law. In many rulings the Court has also tackled the issue of food labelling to ensure it doesn’t mislead consumers or make unfounded health claims. For example, thanks to the Court, manufacturers can’t use illustrations on their packaging of ingredients which are not actually contained in the food. Through these and many other rulings, the Court ensures that we as consumers enjoy a high level of protection against unfair and misleading practices.

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