“Aiming to improve consumers’ access to justice” by providing them with several safeguards, Law no. 414/2023 on the conduct of representative actions for the protection of consumers’ collective interests (”the Law”) has been published recently in the Official Gazette no. 1158, Part I.
Irina Valeanu and Iunia Radu authored a clear-cut overview of the novelties introduced in the Romanian legislation buy this new legal act. The main points of discussion are detailed below and a full review is available, in Romanian, HERE.
The Law transposes Directive (EU) 2020/1828 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2020 on representative actions for the protection of the collective interests of consumers and repealing Directive 2009/22/EC.
It ensures the regulatory framework regarding representative actions brought against infringements produced domestically and cross-border by professionals in the fields regulated by national and European normative acts included in Annex 1 to the Law (“The List”), infringements that harm or may harm consumers’ interests.
By submitting such claims, qualified entities may request to the court, on behalf of consumers, to be applied several injunctive relief or remedial measures either individually, in separate actions or in a single representative action.
Representative actions for the protection of the collective interests of consumers are exempt from court stamp duty and are judged, unless they are brought by way of an injunction, according to common law. As regards the injunctive measures sought by such actions, the legal provisions establish that these judicial proceedings are conducted expeditiously. The decision of the first court is subject to appeal, according to the law. The second appeal may be formulated and, as a result of such action, the enforcement will be suspended.
Furthermore, the legal provisions establish that, in the case of actions for injunctive measures, the qualified entity, in this case the claimant, is not required to prove any loss or damage suffered by the consumers affected by the infringement, nor the professional’s intent or negligence.
The legal provisions mentioned above apply to all representative actions submitted starting with the date of entry into force of this Law, 23.12.2023.