Anyone who sells commercially on eBay not only has to enter a legally compliant cancellation policy in the “eBay return conditions”, but also to enter the cancellation period on eBay. Above all, dealers who participate in the eBay Plus program and thus allow longer cancellation periods fall into a trap if they do not reconcile the cancellation period in the cancellation policy with the separate eBay information. This is currently being used more and more by warn-offs. The IT law firm explains the problem and shows what eBay dealers have to look out for.
I. Duplicate display of cooling-off period on eBay
Commercial eBay dealers are – in addition to other legal information obligations – required to provide correct and complete information on the consumer right of withdrawal in their eBay offers and in this context to provide a complete cancellation policy including a model cancellation form.
The relevant cancellation period must already be stated in the first sentence of the cancellation policy, i.e. the period within which the consumer can exercise his right of cancellation after receipt of the goods.
EBay, however, requires an additional indication of the cancellation period in the return conditions. This must therefore be entered by the dealer independently of the cancellation policy.
In the eBay offer, the separate eBay deadline is then displayed in the return conditions area on the one hand, and the cancellation policy with the specified cancellation period on the other:
II. Misleading through contradictory cancellation periods
With a view to the double display of the cancellation period (once in the cancellation policy and once on eBay), a serious error can now occur in that the cancellation period in the cancellation policy does not match the one in the eBay entry.
In order to teach about the right of cancellation in a legally compliant manner, the cancellation periods in the cancellation policy and in the eBay information must be specified necessarily agree.
If a different cancellation period is specified in the cancellation policy than in the above eBay notice, there is one admonishable misleading about the cancellation period before.
There is a particular risk for retailers who participate in the eBay Plus program and who (have to) grant a one-month cancellation period.
Here it is imperative to ensure that this extended cancellation period is taken into account in the cancellation policy and that it corresponds to the information on eBay.
It is particularly important in this context that “1 month” does not correspond to “30 days”, since 30 days in 7 months of the year would mean a shorter period than the one-month period.
III. Many warnings are currently in circulation
Carelessness in synchronizing the cancellation periods in the eBay cancellation policy and the eBay return information is currently being used again increasingly by warning parties, who are pursuing the objection with injunctive relief and warning costs.
The IT law firm has received various warnings due to contradictory cancellation periods on eBay, for which warning costs of around €500.00 are charged and in the context of which submissions of cease and desist declarations are required.
IV. Conclusion: Be sure to check the synchronicity of the cancellation periods
On eBay, there is always a double display of the cancellation period in offers, which comes from the mandatory cancellation policy and from a separate entry that has to be made in the eBay settings.
Contradictions between these two cancellation periods represent anti-competitive misleading and are currently triggering an increasing number of warnings.
In order to prevent this, all eBay dealers are strongly advised to check their information on cancellation periods in the eBay return conditions and to ensure that the cancellation periods in the cancellation policy on the one hand and the information on eBay on the other hand are the same.
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