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Valid conclusion of a purchase on the internet - the button solution

In accordance with the Consumer Rights Directive, the so-called "button solution" for offers on the internet has been in force in Austria since 2014. This obligation (see FAGG § 8 para. 2) stipulates that all order buttons must be labelled accordingly, and it ensures that when contracts are concluded on websites, the most important information about the content of the contract is displayed before the final confirmation by the customer. Usually, these are the total price or price calculation, features, delivery time or minimum duration depending on the type of product or service.

Blue pictogram shows page with text and paragraph symbols

Clear EU regulations

Button must be correctly labelled


In order to make it unambiguously clear that you are about to enter into a contract and are thus obligated to pay, the button must be labelled with corresponding words such as "buy", "order with costs" or "conclude contract subject to payment".



Words such as "registration", "start", "continue", "package delivery", "participate now" or "order" are not sufficient! They are ambiguous with regard to an obligation to pay. It is not clear here whether you really have to pay something by clicking afterwards.

Infografik zeigt 5 zulässige Buttonbeschriftungen auf grünem Grund mit Häckchen und 5 unzulässige Buttonbeschriftungen auf rotem Grund mit Verbotssymbol
Ist der Vertrag kostenpflichtig, muss auf der Schaltfläche etwas stehen wie „kostenpflichtig bestellen“ Image: EVZ Österreich
Close-up of a web shop screen with "Add to Cart" and "Buy Now" buttons
There are quite precise rules as to what may be written on order and purchase buttons in order for an online transaction concluded with them to be valid. Image: Pavelis / shutterstock

Greater protection through transparency

By clicking on the button, it must be immediately clear in the ordering process that one is about to conclude a transaction and clearly agrees to the obligation to pay costs. This applies to everything sold via websites. The provision also applies to the purchase of package holidays and also to social services and health services if there is a button on such websites to accept the service offered. The only exception are those contracts that are only concluded via email or other individual electronic means of communication (§ 8 para 4 FAGG).

If a website that offers paid services violates this button obligation, no valid contract is created in such an order process. Consumers are then not obliged to make any payments and can, if necessary, demand the return of any payments made.

If you have concluded a contract with costs on a website and the order button in this order process was not labelled in accordance with the rules, you can contest the purchase contract with the following sample letter:


Pictogram on a round dark blue background shows a sheet of paper and pen that have not been written to the end

Use sample letter of the ECC

Overturned newspaper on wooden floor with the title ECJ judgement
Image: Robert Kneschke / Shutterstock

The European Court of Justice dealt with precisely this question on the labelling of buttons. The issue was whether a button on a German-language hotel page of the platform of the travel company Booking.com met the requirements. A website visitor first completed his room selection there with the words "I reserve" with the first button, in the next step he reached the entry of his customer and travel data with the button "Complete booking". After the guest did not show up with his travel company, the hotel charged him more than €2000 in cancellation costs and he sued them. The question to the ECJ was now whether the labels in the Booking.com order procedure were as unambiguous as the words "order subject to payment". In the judgment (Case C-249/21 Fuhrmann-2), the ECJ ruled in favour of the hotel guest that the words "complete booking" in the German language are not clear enough to express an immanent obligation to pay.

Smartphone display shows ticked checkbox and below it an English text which allows the provider to share patient data.
Must not be activated from the outset Image: Mundissima / Shutterstock

No "opt-out" allowed

A chargeable additional option may not be preselected in the ordering process, which customers would have to actively deactivate in order to prevent this additional and chargeable service. (So-called "opt-out" as described in §6c KschG) This would be, for example, a tick in a checkbox which would have to be removed in order not to have to pay for faster delivery or insurance.


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