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New rules for traders and e-shop providers

The new consumer protection legislation is currently in Parliament after first reading, bringing a number of new rights and obligations for traders and e-shop operators including the obligation to adapt their terms and conditions in compliance with the new rules.

Change and introduction of new terminology

A new term of "trader" is introduced, which is a person acting in the course of his business or profession in connection with a consumer contract, an obligation arising therefrom or a commercial practice.

The term "trader" replaces the previous terms "seller" (used in the Consumer Protection Act) and "supplier" (used in the Civil Code).

The new legislation also provides for the introduction of completely new terms, such as:

  • digital content, which is data that is created and delivered in digital form (e.g. a trader's electronic product catalogue);
  • digital service, which is a service that allows a consumer to create, process store or access data in digital form or that allows the exchange or any interaction with that data (e.g. a product finder on a trader's website); and
  • thing with digital elements, which is any movable thing that contains or is connected to digital content or a digital service in such a way that the absence of the digital content or digital service would prevent the thing from performing its functions (e.g. a USB stick).

New information obligations for e-shop providers

E-shop providers will now be obliged to inform consumers about the functionality of digital items, digital content, and digital services, including available technical protection measures, as well as about the compatibility and interoperability of these items.

Indication of compatibility and interoperability can be understood as a situation where an e-commerce trader offers for sale, for example, a USB stick with file protection software (as a digital object) and will have to obtain from the manufacturer and subsequently indicate to the consumer which other software or hardware (e.g. computers, smartphones, computer software) the USB stick is usable with, including the extent of its usability.

Liability of traders in case of defects of digital items, digital content and digital services

The new legislation introduces the liability of the trader for defects in the digital content or digital service on the delivered items. The trader will be liable for any defect in the digital content or digital service that occurs or manifests itself within an agreed period, which shall also not be less than two years from the date of delivery.

Traders will be obliged to inform consumers via manuals and instructions about the montage (or installation) of the item with digital elements, digital content and digital service and will also be liable for a defect due to incorrect montage or installation if the montage or installation was incorrectly carried out by the consumer due to deficiencies in the instructions or manuals.

Consumer protection against price manipulation (new rules on discounts)

When selling discounted goods (e.g. during sales campaigns), the trader will be obliged to indicate the last lowest price of the goods for at least the last 30 days in any price reduction notice. The purpose is to inform the consumer of the actual amount of the discount granted.

Extension of deceptive practices by dual quality marketing

Under the new legislation, the sale of goods that are similarly labelled in Slovakia as in another EU Member State, even if they have substantially different compositions or characteristics, will also be considered a deceptive practice.

An example is the sale of chocolate that is identically labelled in the Slovak Republic as in Austria, but the chocolate in Slovakia will have different nutritional values.

Extension of the withdrawal period from a consumer contract

In the event that a contract is concluded in connection with an unsolicited visit or in connection with a sales event, the consumer will have the right to withdraw from the contract up to 30 days after the conclusion of the contract, as opposed to the current 14-day period.

Calculation and reduction of the fine

The amendment changes the method of calculation of fines for breach of obligations under the new legislation.

Fines will now be imposed and calculated according to the trader's turnover for the last accounting period. In the case of the most serious infringements, the Slovak Trade Inspection Authority, as a supervisory authority, may impose a fine of up to 5% of the trader's annual turnover. The calculation of turnover may also include the trader's turnover in all EU Member States where the infringement has caused damage to the collective interests of consumers.

The new institutions also introduce self-correction measures and allow for a reduction of the infringement penalty if the trader accepts responsibility for his infringement, stops the infringement, remedies the consequences of his behavior and compensates the consumers who have been harmed.

New rules for publication and evaluation of reviews

The publication of reviews (ratings of products and services) on a trader's website already includes an obligation to inform whether and how the authenticity of the reviews is ensured. The purpose is to prevent false promotion of the quality of the products and services offered through the creation of fake reviews.

Where a consumer is able to search for products offered by different traders using a keyword or phrase in an online interface, he will also need to be informed of the main parameters that determine the ranking of products in the online search result and their relative importance.

New information obligation for providers of online marketplaces

When advertising on online marketplaces, offers will have to indicate whether the offer has been published by a trader or by a natural person (non-business). The purpose of this information obligation is to ensure that consumers have legal certainty as to whether they will enjoy the legal protection of their consumer status once they have purchased and entered into a contractual relationship with the seller.


The European Directive has introduced significant changes to online shopping. The new rules will have a significant impact on commercial aspects between consumers and businesses. Due to current developments in the legislative process, the effective date, which is currently proposed for 1 March 2024, will be postponed.

We will monitor the development of the legislative process and keep you updated.

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