How to submit a request?
First, address the seller or service provider in writing
- If a consumer believes that his rights and legitimate interests have been infringed (for example, in case of acquisition of a product or service of improper quality, non-receipt of all or part of goods or services, property damage due to actions of the seller or service provider, etc.), in accordance with Article 21(1) of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Protection of Consumer Rights, the consumer shall first address the seller or service provider and specify his requirement.
- The business shall consider the consumer’s application free of charge and, no later than within 14 days after the receipt of consumer’s requirement, present the consumer with a detailed grounded written reply supported by documents.
- If the seller or service provider fails to satisfy the consumer’s requirement, satisfies it in part, or fails to provide a reply within 14 days, the consumer shall have the right to apply to the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority regarding the resolution of the dispute in accordance with the out-of-court procedure for settlement of disputes.
In case of failure to reach agreement, apply to the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority
- Open and fill in the request form.
- Attach copies of documents proving the circumstances indicated in the request (copies of the purchase receipt, contract, invoice, the seller or service provider’s reply to your request, etc.) as well as copies of other available documents related to the dispute and proving the substance of the possible infringement. If you represent another person, submit the authorisation. The success of the investigation of each request depends on the completeness and accuracy of the information provided by the consumer.
- Send the filled-in and signed request (only signed requests of consumers shall be considered), together with the attached documents, to the Authority to the following address: Vilniaus g. 25, 01402 Vilnius (the contact information of the territorial divisions can be found here), e-mail email@example.com or fax (8 5) 279 1466.
- You can submit a consumer’s request electronically and monitor the consideration of the request through the Consumer Rights Information System (VTIS).
Progress of the consideration of a consumer’s request
- Upon receipt of a consumer’s request and documents proving the circumstances, the Authority addresses the businessman, proposing to settle the dispute amicably or provide reasoned explanations.
- If a dispute arose over the quality of a product or service, where required, the check of the product or assessment of the service is performed.
- A decision is made to satisfy, to partially satisfy, or to reject the consumer’s request. The decision is binding provided that neither party to the dispute has filed, within 30 days, a lawsuit in a general court requesting a trial on the merits.
Duration of the consideration of consumer disputes
In accordance with the provisions of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Protection of Consumer Rights, consumer dispute shall be considered and decision on the merits of the dispute shall be made no later than within 90 days from the day when the body for out-of-court settlement of consumer disputes received the consumer’s complaint. If the consumer dispute cannot be examined and decided upon due to the grounded reasons within this term, the Authority may extend this term for 30 days at the most.
It should be noted that consumers’ requests are considered by the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority in accordance with the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Public Administration, the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Protection of Consumer Rights, and the Rules for the Procedure of Out-of-court Settlement of Consumer Disputes.
What authorities consider disputes between consumers and businessmen?
- The State Consumer Rights Protection Authority: disputes over consumer goods; disputes in spheres not attributed to other authorities (leisure, tourism, cleaning, repair, and other services).
- The Communications Regulatory Authority of the Republic of Lithuania: disputes over electronic communication services (internet, television, mobile communication) or postal services (for more details, see https://www.rrt.lt/).
- The Bank of Lithuania: disputes over financial services (banks, insurance undertakings, credit unions, lending undertakings, investment undertakings, etc.) (for more details, see https://www.lb.lt/).
- The Council of the Lithuanian Bar Association: disputes between consumers and advocates over legal services (for more details, see http://www.advokatura.lt/).
- The National Energy Regulatory Council: disputes over actions of energy undertakings, prices applied by drinking water suppliers and wastewater managers (for more details, see http://vert.lt/).
Online dispute resolution
In 2016, the European Commission introduced a centralised electronic platform enabling consumers to conveniently institute a procedure for the out-of-court resolution of dispute via the internet: https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/odr
To ensure an easier and quicker resolution of disputes, a consumer who has acquired goods or services via the internet in Lithuania, other EU countries, Iceland, Lichtenstein or Norway can apply for the defence of his infringed rights via the Online Dispute Resolution Platform (ODR).
Online dispute resolution procedure:
- Regarding the dispute that arose, first address the seller in writing or contact via the ODR Platform using the direct negotiations function.
- In case of failure to reach agreement with the seller, submit a claim at the ODR Platform.
- Upon receipt of your claim, the seller shall either choose to continue the resolution of the dispute and propose an authority for the resolution of disputes or to reject your claim. If you agree to resolve the dispute with the help of one of the proposed alternative authorities for the resolution of disputes, confirm it at the ODR Platform. If you disagree, you can propose a different authority. An authority for the resolution of disputes must be chosen not later than within 30 days.
- If agreement with the seller on an authority for the resolution of disputes cannot be reached or the seller rejects your complaint, you have the right to directly apply to a competent authority defending consumer rights.
- You can request additional help for the use of the ODR Platform from the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority by e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone (8 5) 205 54 03.
Do you have questions regarding dispute resolution?
Contact the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority for consultation by phone (85) 262 6760 or ask your question by e-mail at email@example.com.
Want to leave a feedback on quality? You can do this on the European Commission's website.