The European Commission has recently launched a new online dispute resolution platform (the “ODR Platform”) to help consumers and traders resolve disputes related to online purchases.

The ODR platform can be found by clicking here.

Pursuant to Regulation (EU) 524/2013 on online dispute resolution for consumer disputes, traders established within the Union engaging in online sales or service contracts or online marketplaces established within the Union, are obliged to use one or more alternative dispute resolution entities to resolve potential disputes with consumers and must provide the above electronic link to the ODR Platform.

The link must be easily accessible for consumers.

Furthermore, if an offer is made through other means of electronic correspondence, such as email, then the link to the ODR Platform must also be provided in that correspondence.

Where applicable, information on the ODR Platform must also be provided in the general terms and conditions applicable to the online sales and service contracts.

Traders should also provide their own email address so that consumers have a first point of contact.

Insurers, insurance intermediaries and re-insurers offering products or services on a website or by other electronic means, particularly if consumer can order their product or services on their respective websites or by other electronic means, are advised to provide a link to the ODR Platform as described above.