Before making your chosen online product purchase, it is wise to ensure that the transaction is protected. It is also wise to be aware of your legal options if the merchant disregards your protections as a customer. 

The concept that a deal is established digitally sets it apart from a sales agreement that has been formed in a “conventional” fashion. The European Union regulation offers exceptional security, especially to the customer, in light of the particulars of this sort of arrangement, to safeguard the contractual parties.

Laws and regulations

The rules of the Customer Protection Act are applied to internet deals that were formed after 2014. The regulation establishes guidelines for supplying data before signing any type of agreement.

A comprehensive degree of uniformity and a combined entirety of important regulations relating to distant agreements are provided by the Buyer Privacy Regulation. The Personal Data Protection Acts and the Council of Ministries’ Guidelines No. 255, titled “Regulations on a Distance Contract,” both apply in Latvia and implement the rules of the Fair Trading Act on digital commerce.

Distant contracts 

When making a purchase online, a digital agreement is made, which is defined as any sales agreement made between a seller and a buyer following a program for providing online products. This agreement requires the use of digital contact methods.

Elements of contracts made at a distance between businesses and customers are governed by the Customer Protection Law. The regulation does not impose specific types of deals because certain fields of the law in the EU already include rules for consumer rights. The main exceptions are:

Principal exclusions include: 

  • Facilities for packaged travel; 
  • Timeshare utilization rights deals; 
  • Traveler transit services. 
  • For the provision of food or home goods; 
  • For contracts in the building; 
  • Deals in real estate; 
  • Medical services; 
  • Social assistance; 
  • Gambling, and 
  • For financial solutions.

Necessary information before purchase 

Before deciding to purchase from a particular online store, thoroughly educate yourself with the data posted on the webpage. It is crucial that the data be openly accessible and that you be aware of the authenticity of the dealer to contact in the event of any problems. Visit the website to see the information on the vendor and the product: 

  • The seller’s name and address;
  • The products’ primary attributes; 
  • Withdrawal policy;
  • Guarantee of products;
  • The ability of virtual goods to operate; 
  • The final cost of the goods or solutions, taxes included; and 
  • Order fulfillment procedures, as well as the trader’s purchaser complaints procedure.

Order verification 

The seller must inform the customer of the date and time of the items’ delivery as well as the verification of the deal’s conclusion. Such affirmations must be made on a long-lasting medium, like an email. Additionally, all of the pre-contract information must be included in this confirmation.

The shipment of commodities 

The seller must supply the products by giving the client custody or control of them without unreasonable delay, but no longer than 1 month after the deal’s completion. 

If the items are not supplied within the allotted 30 days, the buyer and seller must negotiate an extension of the shipping timeframe. The customer has the power to cancel the deal if the merchant does not complete the supply by the conclusion of the extended term.

Retraction rights 

Customers have the power to voluntarily and within a given timeframe retreat from an agreement without stating any justification. 

Agreements are given 14 days of cancellation following buyer protection legislation. Nevertheless, the exit time may be prolonged by up to a year if the dealer forgot to provide details concerning the withdrawal options. The retraction time begins to run on the day the consumer purchases the good or service.

Duties of the consumer in withdrawal case

A consumer is only allowed to partially test a product after getting it to assess its nature, attributes, and functionality. The product may be tested just as if it were being bought in person at a trading place. For example, while purchasing garments, the purchaser should check them but is not allowed to wear them.

Contractual duties for the seller in withdrawal case

Any payments made by the consumer, together with shipping costs, must be refunded by the seller without the unnecessary wait. The reimbursement must be made no later than 2 weeks from the date the buyer informs the merchant of the cancellation. 

Until the items have been returned or until the customer has provided proof that the goods have been returned, the dealer may withhold the refund. If the goods are delivered after the 14-day timeframe has passed, the seller must promptly return the shopper their purchase.