- The consumer benchmarks in the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive
- Award date
- 3 July 2014
- Number of pages
- Document type
- PhD thesis
- Faculty of Law (FdR)
- Centre for the Study of European Contract Law (CSECL)
The Unfair Commercial Practices Directive (2005/29/EC) fully harmonises unfair commercial practices law in the European Union. The Directive aims to achieve a high level of consumer protection, to increase the smooth functioning of the internal market and also more broadly to improve competition in the market as such.
The Directive relies to a large extent on general clauses prohibiting unfair commercial practices. Consumer benchmarks are used in this context to determine the expected behaviour of consumers, including the degree to which they are expected to be informed, attentive and critical. What benchmark is applied is relevant to the level of consumer protection, but also to the other goals of the Directive. For example, the degree to which consumers are protected may affect consumer confidence in cross-border shopping, and what is regarded as unfair also affects competition, since traders acting unfairly can take away market share from fair traders offering better products.
This book investigates the three consumer benchmarks in the Directive (i.e., the average consumer benchmark, the target group benchmark and the vulnerable group benchmark), both at the European and at the national level. Moreover, it provides an analysis of the plausibility of the benchmarks and their application from a consumer behaviour perspective. Finally, it assesses to what extent the consumer benchmarks in the Directive meet each of the Directive’s goals.
- Research conducted at: Universiteit van Amsterdam
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