Consumer centre resolves 2,000 cross-border disputes
European Consumer Centre helps facilitates €112,000 in refunds
The European Consumer Centre in Ireland said about 60 per cent of complaints were resolved successfully. Photograph: Mal Langsdon/Reuters
Almost 2,000 customers were refunded after making complaints to the European Consumer Centre in Ireland, the organisation’s annual report said.
The report, which was published today, said more than 3,300 consumers turned to the centre for help, with about 60 per cent of the cases successfully resolved. More than €112,000 was refunded as a result.
The European Consumer Centre in Ireland provides advice, information and support on consumer rights when buying goods and services in another European country. When complaints are made, it will investigate the case and contact the consumer centre in the country involved, and the company or trader concerned.
Among the successful complaints were consumers who failed to received refunds after goods were not delivered; an Irish person whose 16 year old daughter was denied boarding on a flight in Spain as a result of over-booking; and an Irish consumer who was billed and charged for special cleaning of a rental car from a French company, which was resolved with the help of the French European Consumer Centre.
MEP Marian Harkin said the report indicated a very good outcome. “(It) clearly indicates to consumers that not only is there legislation in place that can protect their rights, but that the European Consumer Centre will assist them in vindicating those rights,” she said.
“More and more people are buying online and more and more people are buying cross-border. While there are laws in place to help protect consumer rights, it can often be difficult to vindicate those rights because of language problems, different legal systems and attempted fraudulent trading.”