- Rules of the ADR procedure
- Preliminary Stage of the ADR procedure
- On the receipt of the Complaint File
- Expenses of the ADR procedure
- Confidentiality of the ADR procedure
1.1 These rules apply to procedures for the out-of court resolution of domestic and cross-border disputes concerning contractual obligations stemming from sales or services contracts between a trader established in the Union and a consumer resident in the Union, both offline and on-line.
1.2 Alternative dispute resolution procedures will be conducted online using the European Union Online Dispute Resolution platform. Assistance will be provided by the European Institute for Conflict Resolution to both consumers and traders on the use of that platform if requested. The alternative dispute resolution procedures can be also conducted offline.
1.3 The parties have the possibility, within a reasonable period of time ( 5 days on the average), of expressing their point of view, of being provided by the European Institute for Conflict Resolution with the arguments, evidence, documents and facts put forward by the other party, any statements made and opinions given by experts, and of being able to comment on them.
1.4 The application of these rules is mandatory for a trader where an application is made against him by a consumer within 12 months from the date on which the trader has given notice to the consumer that the trader is unable to resolve the dispute with the consumer (“The Claim Limitation Date”).
1.5 Claims can be made by or behalf of any person named in the contractual documents.
1.6 The parties have access to the procedure without being obliged to retain a lawyer or a legal advisor, but the procedure shall not deprive the parties of their right to independent advice or to be represented or assisted by a third party at any stage of the procedure.
1.7 The Natural Person in charge of the dispute will not offer legal advice or act as a legal advisor to any party, at any time in connection with the dispute.
1.8 All procedural documents used in the mediation and referred to in these rules are available on European Institute Conflict Resolution’s website European Institute for Conflict Resolution.
1.9 There are three methods of communication:
- by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- by registered mail or by physical presence at the address: European Institute for Conflict Resolution, 27, Str. Tsimiski, PC 54624, Thessaloniki
- by fax:00302310230185
1.10 When time limits are specified, unless otherwise stated, the time period shall begin to run from the date of sending or receipt by the European Institute for Conflict Resolution as the case may be.
1.11 The default language of communication shall be greek, unless agreed otherwise by the parties, the European Institute of Conflict Resolution, and the natural person in charge of the dispute. All procedures will be deemed to take place in Greece.
1.13 The European Institute for Conflict Resolution may refuse to deal with a given dispute under these Rules:
- The consumer did not attempt to contact the trader concerned in order to discuss his complaint and seek, as a first step, to resolve the matter directly with the trader,
- The dispute is frivolous or vexatious in European Institute for Conflict Resolution’s sole opinion,
- The dispute is being or has previously been considered by another ADR entity or by a court,
- The consumer has not submitted the complaint to the European Institute of Conflict Resolution within one year from the date upon which the consumer submitted the complaint to the trader or,
- Dealing with such a type of dispute would otherwise seriously impair the effective operation of the European Institute for Conflict Resolution in its sole opinion.
Where, in accordance with its procedural rules, the European Institute for Conflict Resolution, refuses to deal with a dispute, it shall provide both parties with a reasoned explanation of the grounds for not dealing with the dispute within three weeks of receiving the complaint file.
- Rules of the ADR procedure
2.1 The participation in the procedure does not preclude the possibility of seeking redress through court proceedings.
2.2 The consumer may withdraw at any time from the procedure.
2.3 The natural person in charge of the alternative dispute resolution will not impose a settlement on the parties or render a legally binding award or decision. The parties have the possibility of withdrawing from the procedure at any stage if they are dissatisfied with the performance or the operation of the procedure. They shall be informed of that right before the procedure commences.
The parties, before agreeing or following a proposed solution, are informed that:
a.they have the choice as to whether or not to agree to or follow a proposed solution
- participation in the procedure does not preclude the possibility of seeking redress through court proceedings
- the proposed solution may be different from an outcome determined by a court applying legal rules
- of the legal effect of agreeing or following such a proposed solution
- they are allowed a reasonable period of time to think
2.4 The dispute resolution procedures are limited in time to one hour.
2.5 In the event of an ADR procedure successfully leading to a Settlement, the natural person who is in charge draws up an agreement record. The original agreement can be submitted by the her unilaterally, upon the request of one of the parties, to the Secretariat of the Court of First Instance of the local jurisdiction where the ADR procedure took place. Once submitted in this manner, the agreement becomes enforceable. Once deposited with the secretariat of the single-member court of first instance, the agreement is an enforcement order as provided for in Article 904(2)(c) of the Code of Civil Procedure if it includes an agreement between the parties on an enforceable demand. In case, a settlement is not achieved or a party withdraws from the procedure, a non- Settlement Agreement is drawn up by the European Institut of Conflict Resolution.
- Preliminary stage of the ADR procedure
3.1 Before submitting the complaint to the European Institute of Conflict Resolution, the consumer should contact the trader by any appropriate means, with the aim of resolving the dispute amicably.
3.2 If the consumer wishes to proceed to alternative dispute resolution, a complaint form including all relevant documentation pertaining to that complaint must be returned to the European Institute for Conflict Resolution.
3.3 The Consumer must submit the Complaint Form to the European Institute for Conflict Resolution by the Claim Limitation Date. The trader may, but cannot compelled to, agree to the ADR procedure if the complaint form is received by the European Institute for Conflict Resolution after the Claim Litigation Date. The consumer may submit the complait form and all the relevant information online as well.
The trader, unless he is compelled, is not obliged to use the ADR procedure but he is required to inform the consumer about the ADR procedure and the ADR entity.
3.4 The European Institute of Conflict Resolution will inform the trader that a Complaint File has been submitted from the consumer and shall provide the consumer with a copy of the complaint file.
3.5 The European Institute for Conflict Resolution will prepare and send the Agreement to ADR procedure to the parties and a guide to prepare their ADR case. The parties and their representatives must sign the Agreement to ADR procedure within 5 days of the European Institute for Conflict Resolution sending to them the Agreement to ADR procedure.
3.6 The European Institute for Conflict Resolution will liaise with the parties to agree a suitable date and time for the ADR procedure.
3.7 Each party will prepare and deliver to the European Institute for Conflict Resolution, 5 days prior to the scheduled ADR procedure a concise summary (“Position Statement”) of the matter in dispute, copies of documents referred to in the Position Statement and those documents which the parties intend to refer to during and after the ADR procedure.
3.8 The Position Statement and the documents referred to therein are private and confidential and will not be disclosed by the natural person in charge of the ADR to the other party or to any third party unless expressly authorized to do so by the party who has provided the Position Statement.
3.9 There is no obligation on the parties to exchange Position Statements however they are encouraged to do so. Similarly, the parties are encouraged to prepare and agree a joint bundle of documents.
3.10 The Complaint Form, Position Statements and the Agreement to ADR procedure constitute the Complete Complaint File (“Complete Complaint File”) and the European Institute of Conflict Resolution will confirm receipt of the Complete Complaint File to both parties
- On the receipt of the Complete Complaint File
4.1 On receipt of the Complete Complaint File, the European Institute for Conflict Resolution will appoint a neutral, impartial and independent natural person for the ADR procedure.
4.2 The natural person in charge of the ADR will confirm to the European Institute for Conflict Resolution the acceptance of his appointment and declare that he has no conflict of interest in the matter in dispute.
4.3 The European Institute for Conflict Resolution will inform the parties of the appointment and the name of the natural person in charge of dispute resolution and will send the Compete Complaint File to the natural person in charge.
4.4 The natural person in charge will consider all documentation and may ask for further information from the parties.
4.5 The natural person in charge of the dispute shall have the widest discretion permitted by law to mediate the dispute in accordance with natural justice. In particular, he has the power to direct the procedure of the ADR session, including varying time limits and other procedural requirements, and to:
4.5.1 allow the parties to submit in writing further evidence and/or to amend the Position Statements;
4.5.2 conduct written enquiries and receive and consider additional documentary evidence as he sees appropriate;
4.5.3 end the ADR session if he considers the case to be incapable of resolution under these rules.
4.6 If any party fails to deliver anything required by the natural person in charge of the dispute, the ADR procedure will proceed as the natural person in charge considers appropriate.
4.7 The European Institute for Conflict Resolution will appoint a new natural person in charge of the dispute if the natural person in charge originally appointed is unable to deal with the dispute. The European Institute for Conflict Resolution will inform the parties if such an appointment is made.
4.8 Within 15 days of the Complete Complaint file being sent to the natural person in charge, or from the date on which the last of the information required by the natural person in charge is submitted to him, and in any event no later than 90 days from the date the Complete Complaint File is received by the European Institute for Conflict Resolution, the natural person in charge will conduct the ADR procedure by physical presence or online.
4.9 Participants for each party shall include at least one person who has full and unlimited legal authority to bind that party to settle the dispute on its behalf. Any restriction on this authority must be notified in writing to the natural person in charge and the European Institute of Conflict Resolution prior to commencement of the ADR procedure.
4.10 The natural person in charge may hold private, on line or face to face sessions with each and/or their representatives.
4.11 Information received by the natural person in charge through such sessions shall be and remain confidential with the natural person in charge save that:
- It is an any event publicly available or
- The natural person is specifically authorized by a party to disclose it to the other party and/or their representatives.
4.12 Furthermore, every party involved in the ADR procedure and the European Institute for Conflict Resolution will keep confidential the fact that the ADR procedure is to take place or has taken place and all information (whether given orally or in writing) produced for or delivered as part of the ADR procedure including the settlement agreement (if any) except in so far as is necessary to implement or enforce any such settlement agreement or as required by any applicable law.
The European Institute for Conflict Resolution takes the necessary measures to ensure that the processing of personal data complies with the rules on the protection of personal data laid down in the national legislation [L. 2472/1997 (50 A’)]
Personal data related to a dispute shall be kept in the database only for the time necessary to achieve the purposes for which the they were collected and to ensure that data subjects are able to access their personal data in order to exercise their rights, and shall be automatically deleted, at the latest six months after the date of conclusion of the debate.
4.13 The ADR process shall be deemed to continue until any of the following occurs:
4.13.1 a written settlement agreement is executed and signed by the parties,
4.13.2 a written notice of withdrawal is given by the consumer,
4.13.3 the time set for the ADR session has expired without agreement for continuation or resumption.
4.14 The dates and times of the commencement and termination of the ADR process and the reasons therefore shall be advised by the natural person in charge to the European Institute for Conflict Resolution.
4.15 If a settlement is not reached and if so requested and agreed by the parties and the natural person in charge of the dispute, the natural person in charge of the dispute may render a non-binding opinion or recommendation on how a settlement may be reached. In such cases the parties shall have the choice whether or not to agree upon that opinion or recommendation on how a settlement may be reached. In such cases the parties shall have the choice whether or not to agree upon that opinion or recommendation and as part of the ADR process they shall agree upon a reasonable time for each to consider that opinion or recommendation before entering a Settlement Agreement.
4.16 The natural person in charge shall not be liable to any party for any act or omission in connection with any ADR process conducted under these Rules, save for any wrongdoing on his part arising from bad faith.
4.17 The European Institute for Conflict Resolution can only be held liable for acts of bad faith.
- Costs incurred in the ADR procedure
5.1 The ADR procedure is free of charge for consumers. Each party shall bear its own costs of preparing and submitting its case, including the costs of legal representation, if any, and no legal action may be brought to recover these costs.
5.2 The trader is responsible for all fees, which will be agreed with the European Institute for Conflict Resolution, and paid upon European Institute for Conflict Resolution informing the trader of the claim or of the The trader shall not be entitled to the return of all or part of the fees.
6.1 The European Institute for Conflict Resolution complies with the rules on the protection of personal data laid down in the laws and confidentiality and privacy are respected at all times during the ADR procedure.
6.2 Personal data will only be published as may be required by law, court order or any governmental or regulatory authority.
6.3 Unless requested by either party, the European Institute for Conflict Resolution will destroy all documents concerning the ADR procedure, six months from the ADR procedure date.