PRESS RELEASE 26.06.2017: Information to consumers on how they can be represented by ABDRC
- Jun 26, 2017
- In Information
Consumers can turn to the free-of-charge services of ABDRC by themselves, or can be assisted by attorneys (in this case, the fee is borne by consumers). Similarly, they can also be represented by the consumer protection associations they are part of, or by other third persons (in this latter case, a notarized power of attorney is required).
Following the repeated questions received from consumers, both by phone, and by email, we believe that some clarifications about access to the services and operation of the Alternative Banking Dispute Resolution Centre (ABDRC) are advisable. Thus, ABDRC provides the following explanations:
- The alternative dispute resolution procedures/ADR (with proposed solution/conciliation or with imposed solution/arbitration) are free of charge for consumers, and the solution is rendered in not more than 90 days.
- Only consumers who are natural persons may seize ABRDC and file/sent an application for alternative resolution of a dispute with a trader (commercial bank, NBFI, pawn shop, mutual benefit entity, etc., that is virtually any entity which operate on the territory of Romania and the business of which is regulated, authorized and supervised/monitored by the National Bank of Romania).
- Consumers can turn to the free-of-charge services of ABDRC by themselves, or can be assisted by attorneys (in this case, the fee is borne by consumers). Similarly, they can also be represented by the consumer protection associations they are part of, or by other third persons (in this latter case, a notarized power of attorney is required).
- Consumers are the one to choose one of the two procedures managed by ABDRC, concluded with either proposing or imposing a solution (conciliation or arbitration). Nevertheless, the traders need also to agree to commencement of one of the procedures (these being voluntary in nature).
- The solutions proposed by the Conciliators with ABDRC may be different from the court judgments. At the same time, involvement in an ADR procedure does not preclude the possibility for the consumer to bring up a legal action afterwards.
- The disputes which have already been ruled on under a court judgment or arbitral award will no longer be reviewed by the ADR Center if the case is identical to the one in court. If, however, there are other aspects/requirements which have not been covered by the court casefile, then the consumer may still approach ABDRC. Similarly, when there is a pending lawsuit in which a judgment has not been yet rendered, consumers may approach the ADR Center for an amicable resolution.
Please be reminded that ABDRC is an independent apolitical not-for-profit entity of public interest established under the Government Ordinance no. 38/2015. The purpose of ABDRC is to manage the infrastructure required for alternative resolution of the disputes between consumers and the banking and financial institutions in a balanced, reasonable, expeditious and out-of-court manner, working with experts in the banking and financial sector (Conciliators) who, according to the procedure chosen by the parties, may either propose or impose a resolution solution for the dispute.
Conciliators are persons with legal or economic background and training in the financial and banking sector, and have at least 10 years of experience in a legal or economic activity. The list of conciliators who work with ABDRC is available at www.csalb.ro.