New platform for alternative dispute resolution
With 2016, a new system of out-of-court dispute resolution comes into force within the EU. Consumers who face a problem with a trader can turn to an independent, neutral and - in Austria - free of charge arbitration body. These are an alternative to the legal way through court.
On 13 January 2016, the Austrian Minister for Social Affairs, Rudolf Hundstorfer, presented the eight Austrian arbitration bodies in a press conference. Seven of them are linked to specific branches (like telecommunication services, online businesses or transport), and one handles everything that is not covered by the others.
Besides the option of contacting of these bodies directly, consumers will also be able to use the new Internet platform that will be available with 15 February 2016. On the "Online Dispute Resolution" (ODR), consumers can submit their complaint and the whole process will be handled online. The European Consumer Centre (ECC) is the official contact point in Austria for this system. It offers advise and support. If you face a problem with a trader from another EU Member State, the ECC can help you to find the competent arbitration body.
Please find detailed information here.