Goltsblat BLP advises that, on 6 March 2017, the Legislative Commission of the Russian Government approved a draft law introducing the concept of an aggregator of goods/services for further protecting consumer rights to information about goods and services.
The federal law “On Amendments to the Russian Federation Law “On Consumer Protection” (the Draft Law) was initially drafted by Rospotrebnadzor1 but did not meet with approval by the Ministry for Economic Development, which deemed the proposed regulation method inadequate.
Rospotrebnadzor responded to the Ministry’s comments by rewording the Draft Law to define an aggregator of goods/services (the aggregator) as any entity, no matter what its legal status, or individual entrepreneur offering consumers, on its website, with respect to certain goods/services, the simultaneous opportunity to (i) learn about the goods/services sold or rendered by the seller or service provider under a contract of sale or service contract, (ii) enter into such a contract with the seller or service provider and (iii) remit an advance payment for the goods/service directly to the bank account of the entity or individual entrepreneur.
An aggregator is required to provide consumers with the following information about itself and the producer (seller) for which it acts:
name, location and state registration number of the legal entity incorporation record or
full name of the individual entrepreneur and state registration number of their state registration entry.
The aggregator may do this by posting a link on its website to the web page of the manufacturer, seller or service provider.
The Draft Law introduces civil law liability for an aggregator that deliberately posts misleading information about goods/services or sellers (service providers, manufacturers, importers) resulting in a contract with a consumer. The penalties include recovery of real damage caused to the consumer by such misleading information (within the amount advanced in payment to the aggregator’s bank account for the relevant goods or services).
The key matter of the Draft Law is that it makes the seller (service provider) liable for failure to perform a contract made on an aggregator website.
The law is expected to come into effect 180 days after its official publication.
Goltsblat BLP will be monitoring how the law is enacted and is ready to advise on any changes in its status.
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