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Karakostas I.
This widely acclaimed and highly regarded textbook, originally written in Greek by I. Karakostas, a distinguished professor at Athens Law School, and now translated in English, offers an in-depth analysis of consumer protection law in Greece and provides an incomparable insight and commentary on the relevant hellenic consumer protection legislation (Law 2251/1994). The updated book, consisting of ten chapters, each addressing a pivotal issue (e.g. unfair general terms, distance contracts, producerʼs liability for defective products, consumer health and safety, judicial remedies etc), aims to provide a valuable assistance to the foreign scholars, academics, practitioners and, last but not least, the foreign consumers living or otherwise spending in Greece.
LEGISLATION (Articles 1-10 of Law 2251/1994)  
Law 2251/1994Σελ. 3
1. The origin and content of the transactional obligation-principle of consumer protectionΣελ. 45
2. Consumer Protection in Greek lawΣελ. 46
3. The general provisions of L. 2251/94Σελ. 47
A. Consumer protection as a State obligation Σελ. 47
B. The introduction of the fundamental concept of sustainable consumptionΣελ. 48
4. The concept of «consumer» and «supplier»Σελ. 49
A. ConsumerΣελ. 49
I. Definition of consumerΣελ. 49
a) Persons and unions with or without legal personality as consumersΣελ. 50
b) Elements of the concept of consumerΣελ. 50
(aa) Supply of goods or services in the marketΣελ. 50
(bb) Final receiverΣελ. 51
c) The receiver of advertisement and the guarantor as consumersΣελ. 52
II. Control criteria for proper placing into the definitionΣελ. 53
a) The negotiating superiority of the supplierΣελ. 53
b) Abusive invocation of L. 2251/1994 by the consumerΣελ. 54
III. The balancing of the criteria and the election of the "reasonably observant and circumspect consumer"Σελ. 55
B. Supplier Σελ. 57
I. Definition of the concept of supplierΣελ. 57
II. Enterprises of the public domain and public utility enterprises Σελ. 57
5. Community consumer protection policyΣελ. 58
A. The necessity of a community consumer protection parallel to the national protectionΣελ. 58
B. The basic points of the European Union policy on consumer protectionΣελ. 59
1. The principle of freedom of contracts and the exception of the pre-formulated standard contracts Σελ. 61
2. Concept and scope of application of General Contract Terms and Conditions ("GCTC")Σελ. 62
A. The contractual nature of GCTCΣελ. 62
B. Unilateral pre-formulation of terms -Total absence of negotiationΣελ. 64
C. Purpose of a future uniform useΣελ. 65
3. The judicial review of the GCTCΣελ. 65
A. Examination of the inclusion of GCTC in the contractΣελ. 66
I. Pointing out of GCTC -Ensuring the knowledge of their content Σελ. 66
a) The indication of GCTC - Obligation of writing and clear formulationΣελ. 66
b) The Greek language as language of drafting GCTCΣελ. 69
II. Knowledge or culpable ignorance of the GCTC by the consumer Σελ. 70
III. Consent of the counterparty to the effect of GCTCΣελ. 70
B. Review through the interpretation of GCTCΣελ. 71
I. The interpretative rules of L. 2251/94Σελ. 71
II. General interpretative criteria of the GCCΣελ. 72
ΙΙΙ. Criteria of Constitutional lawΣελ. 73
C. Review of the content of GCTCΣελ. 75
I. The two systems of review of the GCTC and the criterion of their applicationΣελ. 75
II. The review of the content of GCTC according to L. 2251/94Σελ. 76
a) The general prohibition clause of article 2 par. 6 L. 2251/94Σελ. 76
b) The indicative catalogue of article 2 par. 7 of L. 2251/94 regarding abusive terms Σελ. 78
c) The consequences of the abusiveness of a GCTCΣελ. 82
III. Review of the content of GCTC through the system of the Greek Civil Code ("GCC")Σελ. 83
a) The provision of article 178 of GCC for the transaction which is contrary to moralityΣελ. 83
b) The provision of article 179 sent. b of GCC for the oppressive transactionΣελ. 83
c) The provisions of articles 371-373 of GCC for a performance non- determinedΣελ. 84
d) The provision of article 281 of GCC for the abuse of right Σελ. 85
e) The provision of article 288 of GCC on good faith and business practices Σελ. 86
f) The provision of article 332 par. 2 sent. b. GCC for the exclusion of liability clauses because of faultΣελ. 86
4. The general terms and conditions of the banking transactionsΣελ. 89
A. The applicability of L. 2251/1994 in banking contractsΣελ. 89
I. The concept of "consumer" of credit and financial services Σελ. 90
a) The customer of the Bank Σελ. 90
b) The guarantor of a banking loanΣελ. 92
II. The concept of supplierΣελ. 95
B. Case study of abusive banking GCTCΣελ. 96
1. The meaning of the term "contracts negotiated away from business premises"Σελ. 105
2. Conditions for the implementation of article 3 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 106
A. Place of conclusion of the contract (article 3 par. 1)Σελ. 106
B. The supplier's initiative and the consumer's surprise (article 3 par. 2)Σελ. 106
C. The offer addressed by the consumer to the supplier for products other than those for which the agreement was concluded (article 3 par. 2)Σελ. 107
D. The consumer's offer for the conclusion of the contract (article 3 par. 3)Σελ. 108
3. The scope of application of article 3 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 108
A. Promissory - disposal contractsΣελ. 108
B. Contracts for a considerationΣελ. 109
C. Guarantee contractsΣελ. 109
4. Excluded contractsΣελ. 111
A. Sales of hawkers not having a permanent establishmentΣελ. 112
B. Contracts for the construction, sale or renting or other rights concerning immovable propertyΣελ. 112
C. Contracts for the supply of goods intended for consumption in the household supplied by suppliers delivering at the doorstepΣελ. 113
D. Contracts concluded on the basis of a catalogue distributed by the supplierΣελ. 113
5. The protection provided by lawΣελ. 115
A. Form of conclusion of the contractΣελ. 115
B. The right of withdrawalΣελ. 116
I. The unjustifiable withdrawalΣελ. 116
II. The means of exercise of the right of withdrawalΣελ. 117
III. The period of time for the exercise of the right of withdrawalΣελ. 117
IV. Transitional periodΣελ. 118
a) The prohibition of payment of the purchase priceΣελ. 119
b) The supplier's obligation of pre-fulfillment Σελ. 119
V. Obligation for the products' custody on behalf of the consumerΣελ. 119
a) When the consumer has no custody obligationΣελ. 120
b) When the consumer has a custody obligation Σελ. 120
VI. Consequences of the exercise or not of the withdrawalΣελ. 120
VII. Consequences of the lack of information of the consumer as to the right of withdrawalΣελ. 121
C. Means of protection other than withdrawalΣελ. 121
DISTANCE CONTRACTS (Article 4 of L. 2251/1994)  
1. The meaning of distance contracts - scope of applicationΣελ. 125
A. Conditions for the application of article 4 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 125
B. The meanings of consumer and supplierΣελ. 126
C. Contracts excluded from the meaning of distance contractsΣελ. 127
2. Consumer Information ObligationΣελ. 128
A. Obligation of information at the pre-contractual phaseΣελ. 128
B. Obligation of information during the performance of the consumer contractΣελ. 129
3. The consumer's right of withdrawal Σελ. 130
A. Means of exercise of the rightΣελ. 130
B. The period of time for the exercise of the rightΣελ. 131
C. Consequences of the exercise of the right of withdrawal Σελ. 132
4. Performance of the distance contract and means of payment of the priceΣελ. 132
A. Period of time for performance of the contractΣελ. 132
B. Variation to what is supplied under a contractΣελ. 133
C. Payment of the priceΣελ. 133
5. Unfair practices of aggressive salesΣελ. 134
A. Prohibition of delivery of goods or provision of services without order - Fraudulent use of a credit cardΣελ. 134
B. Protection of the consumer's private lifeΣελ. 135
6. Distance marketing of financial servicesΣελ. 136
A. The incorporation of community Directive 2002/65/EC into L. 2251/1994Σελ. 136
B. Scope of application of article 4a of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 137
C. Obligation of information of the consumerΣελ. 137
D. The consumer's right of withdrawalΣελ. 138
E. Prohibition of delivery of goods or provision of services without order - Fraudulent debit of credit cardsΣελ. 139
7. Electronic commerceΣελ. 140
A. The meaning of electronic commerceΣελ. 140
I. E-consumer protection in law applying to the sale of goodsΣελ. 141
II. E-consumer protection under L. 2251/1994Σελ. 142
B. Directive 2000/31/EC on electronic commerce and the implementing Greek law (p.d. 131/2003)Σελ. 143
I. The purpose of Directive 2000/31/EC on electronic commerceΣελ. 143
II. Scope of application of p.d. 131/2003 - Information society servicesΣελ. 144
III. Fields excluded from the scope of application of p.d. 131/2003Σελ. 145
C. The meaning of the consumer in electronic contractsΣελ. 145
D. Obligation of information of the consumer in electronic commerceΣελ. 147
I. General information obligatorily providedΣελ. 147
II. Special information obligatorily provided upon conclusion of electronic contractsΣελ. 148
III. Information obligatorily provided for commercial communicationsΣελ. 149
IV. Principles regulating the procedure of placing orders by virtue of electronic meansΣελ. 150
V. Reference of p.d. 131/2003 to the provisions of L. 2251/1994 on judicial and out-of-court dispute resolutionΣελ. 150
E. International jurisdiction on electronic consumer contractsΣελ. 150
F. Administrative cooperation of EU member states for the protection of consumers in electronic commerceΣελ. 151
1. Consumer Protection in sales of consumer goods and guaranteesΣελ. 153
A. The provision of article 5 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 153
B. The provision of community Directive 1999/44/ECΣελ. 154
2. The obligation for the provision of informationΣελ. 155
A. Clear instructions for safe useΣελ. 155
B. Information for the possible life of the productΣελ. 155
3. Obligation for granting a guaranteeΣελ. 156
A. The (civil) guarantee in the sale of articles 559 and 556 of GCCΣελ. 156
B. The commercial (or consumer) guarantee of article 5 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 157
I. The mandatory character of the guaranteeΣελ. 157
II. The written form of the guarantee Σελ. 158
III. The content of the guaranteeΣελ. 158
IV. The relation between the GCC provisions on supplier's liability and article 5 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 160
4. The obligation of ensuring the after-sales service (replacement, maintenance, repair) etc.Σελ. 162
1. The conditions of article 6 of L. 2251/94 for the producer's liabilityΣελ. 165
A. The meaning of the term "producer"Σελ. 165
I. The real producerΣελ. 166
II. The quasi producerΣελ. 167
III. The importerΣελ. 167
IV. The supplierΣελ. 169
V. Recourse between co-debtors - joint liabilityΣελ. 171
VI. Relation to the general provisions of law concerning tortuous liabilityΣελ. 172
B. The meaning of the term "product"Σελ. 172
I. Elements of the definition of the term "product"Σελ. 172
II. Case studyΣελ. 173
III. The exception of servicesΣελ. 175
IV. Product's origin from a producerΣελ. 175
C. The meaning of the term "defect"Σελ. 175
I. Independent and autonomous meaning of the term defectΣελ. 175
II. Categorization of defects Σελ. 176
III. The anticipated performance or the reasonably expected safetyΣελ. 177
IV. Criteria for the determination of the anticipated performance and the reasonably expected safetyΣελ. 178
V. Causal link between defect and damageΣελ. 180
D. The meaning of the term "damage" Σελ. 181
I. Protected legal goods Σελ. 181
II. Damage caused by death or by personal injuriesΣελ. 183
a) Persons entitled to compensation Σελ. 183
b) Recovery of damageΣελ. 185
III. Damage due to harm or destruction of propertyΣελ. 188
a) Damage to assets "other than the defective product"Σελ. 188
b) The product must be intended for private use or consumptionΣελ. 192
c) Damage to be recoveredΣελ. 194
d) Persons entitled to compensationΣελ. 196
e) Damage with a lower threshold of 500 EuroΣελ. 196
IV. Moral damageΣελ. 198
V. The more specific issue of the environmental damageΣελ. 202
E. Burden of proof and reasons of exclusion of the producer's liabilityΣελ. 205
I. The producer did not put the product into circulationΣελ. 206
II. The defect came into being after the product was put into circulationΣελ. 206
III. Product's manufacture and distribution for private reasonsΣελ. 207
IV. The product's manufacture in compliance with mandatory regulationsΣελ. 208
V. Incapacity to discover the defect due to the state of scientific and technical knowledgeΣελ. 208
VI. Defect attributable to the main product, in which the component has been incorporatedΣελ. 210
F. Prohibition of exclusion clausesΣελ. 211
G. Expiration of LiabilityΣελ. 212
2. Tortuous liability under GCC and the producer's special liability under L. 2251/94Σελ. 212
A. Comparison of the tortuous liability of GCC and the special liability of article 6 of L. 2251/94Σελ. 212
I. Advantages of the choice of the provisions of GCC as a legal basisΣελ. 212
II. Advantages of the choice of article 6 of L. 2251/94 as a legal basisΣελ. 213
B. Concurrence of claims from the special provisions for the producer's liability and contractual liability Σελ. 214
I. Concurrence of legal basesΣελ. 214
II. The law regarding the seller's liability for the product's defectsΣελ. 215
III. Recovery of further damages caused by a real defectΣελ. 216
CONSUMER HEALTH AND SAFETY (Article 7 of L. 2251/1994)  
1. European Community product safety legislation Σελ. 219
2. The importance of article 7 of L. 2251/94Σελ. 220
3. Obligations when placing products on the marketΣελ. 221
A. The meaning of the term "supplier" - scope of application Σελ. 221
B. The meaning of the term "safe product"Σελ. 222
I. The meaning of the term "product"Σελ. 222
II. The criterion of safetyΣελ. 222
III. Supplier's obligation to comply with his obligations Σελ. 223
IV. Obligations of distributors Σελ. 224
4. Controls for the safety of products that have been placed on the marketΣελ. 225
A. Controls on a national levelΣελ. 225
B. Controls on a community levelΣελ. 227
5. Labelling, marking and instructions for useΣελ. 229
A. Products' characteristicsΣελ. 230
I. FoodstuffsΣελ. 230
II. Medicines Σελ. 234
B. Products' originΣελ. 235
C. Products' priceΣελ. 236
D. Products' instructions for use and the relevant perilsΣελ. 236
I. Obligations applying for all productsΣελ. 236
II. Obligations applying for certain productsΣελ. 237
a) FoodstuffsΣελ. 237
b) Medicinal productsΣελ. 237
c) ToysΣελ. 238
6. EU Consumer Policy Strategy 2007-2013Σελ. 239
LIABILITY OF SUPPLIER OF SERVICES (Article 8 of L. 2251/1994)  
1. Rule establishing the liability of supplier of services Σελ. 241
A. Supply of servicesΣελ. 242
I. The service must be supplied in an independent way and in the context of the exercise of a professional activity (positive requirement)Σελ. 242
a) Supply of service in an independent wayΣελ. 242
b) Service in the course of exercise of professional activityΣελ. 243
II. The construction of products or the transfer of property rights or intellectual property rights does not constitute a service (negative requirement)Σελ. 243
III. Positive act or default as requirement of liabilityΣελ. 244
B. Fault and illegalityΣελ. 245
I. FaultΣελ. 245
II. IllegalityΣελ. 246
III. DamageΣελ. 247
IV. Causal link between the supply of service and the damageΣελ. 247
2. Burden of proof according to article 8 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 248
A. The provision of article 8 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 248
I. Specific provisions about the burden of proofΣελ. 248
II. Differences in relation to article 914 of the GCCΣελ. 248
III. Criteria for the evaluation of the lack of faultΣελ. 249
IV. Circumstances determining the reasonably expected safetyΣελ. 250
a) The nature and the subject matter of the service, particularly in relation to the level of its dangerousness Σελ. 250
b) The presentation and the way of supply of the serviceΣελ. 250
c) The time of the supply of serviceΣελ. 251
d) The value of the supplied serviceΣελ. 251
e) The freedom of activity which remains to the damaged party in the context of the serviceΣελ. 251
f) The damaged party belongs to a category of persons who are inferior or vulnerable personsΣελ. 251
g) The supplied service as a voluntary offer of the supplierΣελ. 252
3. Reasons of limitation or discharge of the liability of the supplier of servicesΣελ. 252
A. Joint liability - Right of recourse Σελ. 252
B. Concurrent fault of the damaged party (or person against whom the damaged party is liable)Σελ. 253
C. Exclusion of exclusion clausesΣελ. 255
4. Particular categories of servicesΣελ. 255
A. The extent of the regulation of article 8 of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 255
B. The liability of the supplier of banking financial servicesΣελ. 256
I. The customer of the Bank as consumerΣελ. 256
II. The supply of independent financial servicesΣελ. 256
III. Fault and illegalityΣελ. 258
IV. Damage and causal linkΣελ. 260
V. Burden of proofΣελ. 260
VI. Limitation of liabilityΣελ. 261
VII. Case law application of the liability of the Bank according to article 8 of L. 2251/94Σελ. 262
C. The liability of the supplier of investment servicesΣελ. 263
I. The investor as consumerΣελ. 263
II. The supply of independent investment servicesΣελ. 265
III. Fault and illegalityΣελ. 266
IV. Damage and causal linkΣελ. 267
V. Reasons of limitation of liability of the ISPCΣελ. 267
a) Joint liability of the ISPC and of third personsΣελ. 267
b) Contributory fault of the receiver of investment servicesΣελ. 269
D. The liability of the supplier of insurance servicesΣελ. 270
I. The status of the insured as consumerΣελ. 270
II. The obligations of the supplier of insurance servicesΣελ. 271
III. Application of article 8 of Law 2251/1994 to marine insuranceΣελ. 271
E. The liability of the supplier of legal servicesΣελ. 272
I. The liability of the supplier of legal services of the special provision of article 73 of the Introductory Law of the Greek Code of Civil ProcedureΣελ. 272
II. Possibility of invocation and application of article 8 of L. 2251/1994 to legal servicesΣελ. 274
F. The liability of the supplier of medical servicesΣελ. 277
I. The characteristics of the medical liabilityΣελ. 277
a) The rules of ethics as a basis of the medical liabilityΣελ. 277
i) The obligation of information as an ethical obligationΣελ. 278
ii) The obligation of maintenance of the medical secrecy as an ethical obligationΣελ. 280
b) The specialized knowledge as reason of medical liabilityΣελ. 281
II. Establishment of the medical liability in L. 2251/1994Σελ. 284
III. Contractual liability in cases of supply of medical servicesΣελ. 286
IV. Tortuous liability of the supplier of medical services Σελ. 287
G. The liability of the supplier of tourist servicesΣελ. 288
I. The liability of the supplier of tourist services on the basis of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 289
a) Possibility of application of article 8 of L. 2251/1994 about the liability of the supplier of servicesΣελ. 289
b) Possibility of application of the provision for the liability of the producer of defective goods (article 6 of L. 2251/1994)Σελ. 290
c) Possibility of application of article 2 par. 6 and 7 (general terms of transactions)Σελ. 291
i) General terms of transactions (contracts) in tourist generally contractsΣελ. 291
ii) General terms of transactions in contracts of time-sharing lease (time- share)Σελ. 292
II. Possibility of conjunction of legal basesΣελ. 294
a) The liability of the hotelier according to articles 834-839 of GCCΣελ. 295
b) The liability of the tourist businessman according to the provisions for the organized travelsΣελ. 297
c) Possibility of liability of tourist businessman according to the provisions for the contract of transportation Σελ. 299
1. The protection of the consumer as a receiver of advertising messagesΣελ. 301
A. The protection of the receiver of the advertising by the European and the national lawΣελ. 301
B. The breadth of the notion of advertising Σελ. 303
2. Misleading and unfair advertising (prior to L. 3587/2007)Σελ. 304
A. Misleading advertisingΣελ. 304
I. The principle of truth and objectivityΣελ. 304
II. The inaccuracy of the spotΣελ. 305
III. Positive act or omission as a means for misleading advertisingΣελ. 306
IV. Impression that the advertising creates to the consumersΣελ. 306
V. Possibility of influence of the economic behavior of the consumerΣελ. 307
VI. The jurisprudence of the ECJ on misleading advertisingΣελ. 307
B. Unfair advertising (prior to L. 3587/2007)Σελ. 308
I. The general clause of the good moralsΣελ. 308
II. The special case of the subliminal advertisingΣελ. 308
III. Indirect advertisingΣελ. 309
3. Comparative advertising (article 9 §§ 2-4 of L. 2251/1994 after L. 3587/2007)Σελ. 311
A. The admissibility of comparative advertising in principleΣελ. 311
B. Types of comparative advertisingΣελ. 314
C. The Greek and European jurisprudence on comparative advertisingΣελ. 315
4. Direct advertising (after L. 3587/2007)Σελ. 318
A. Direct transmission of the advertising spotΣελ. 318
B. Consumer's consentΣελ. 319
5. Unfair commercial practices (the new articles 9a to 9i after L. 3587/2007)Σελ. 320
Introductory noteΣελ. 320
A. Community harmonization of the provisions concerning the unfair commercial practicesΣελ. 322
B. Scope of application of the new provisions concerning the unfair commercial practicesΣελ. 323
C. Commercial practices contrary to the general clause of article 9cΣελ. 324
D. Misleading commercial practicesΣελ. 326
I. Commercial practices that consist in actionΣελ. 326
II. Commercial practices that consist in omissionΣελ. 327
E. Aggressive commercial practicesΣελ. 328
F. The list of per se unfair commercial practicesΣελ. 329
G. Special provision on the protection of the minors against the advertising of childrens' games Σελ. 334
6. Consequences in case of violation of the provisions on advertisingΣελ. 335
A. Sanctions in case of violation of articles 9c to 9hΣελ. 335
B. Claim for the omission of the illegal advertising and of the unfair commercial practicesΣελ. 336
I. Right of the claimant to sue the defendantΣελ. 336
II. The issue of the apportionment of the burden of proof between the advertised and the consumerΣελ. 337
1. The unions of consumers in L. 2251/1994Σελ. 339
A. Legal form and constitution of unions of consumersΣελ. 339
B. Purpose of the unions of consumersΣελ. 342
2. Class (collective) action in L. 2251/1994Σελ. 342
A. Class (collective) action as a means of judicial protectionΣελ. 342
I. The notion of class (collective) actionΣελ. 342
II. Categories of class (collective) actionΣελ. 343
III. Purpose of class (collective) actionΣελ. 343
B. Legalization of the unions of consumersΣελ. 344
I. Exercise of the personal claims of the members of the unionΣελ. 344
II. Exercise of interventions in pending cases of members of the unionΣελ. 345
III. Exercise of class (collective) actionΣελ. 345
a) Conditions of personal jurisdictionΣελ. 345
b) Conditions for personal jurisdiction of the defendantΣελ. 346
c) The legal nature of the class (collective) actionΣελ. 347
C. The class (collective) action as a means of preventive and repressive protectionΣελ. 348
D. Restoration of damage caused by a wrongful conduct Σελ. 351
E. Class action as a means of interim measuresΣελ. 352
3. Compensation for moral damage in the framework of class action of L. 2251/1994Σελ. 353
A. Conditions of exercise of the right to compensation for moral damages by the unions of consumersΣελ. 353
I. Liability of the producer of defective products for the compensation of moral damage Σελ. 353
II. Threat of health and safety of the consumers as a condition for the compensation for moral damagesΣελ. 354
III. The misleading commercial practices as a condition for the satisfaction of moral damageΣελ. 355
B. Function and ratio of compensation for moral damages in the framework of class actionΣελ. 355
I. The restorative characterΣελ. 355
II. The absence of punishing purpose Σελ. 357
III. The opinion of the jurisprudence: Civil sanctionΣελ. 358
IV. Criteria for the determination of the extent of compensationΣελ. 359
V. In natura removal of the moral damage Σελ. 361
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