The consumer protection’s equivalent to the GDPR is introduced in Sweden

Published:

Apr 21, 2022

Consumer legislation means, just as it sounds, a regulatory framework that gives consumers protection (rights) when buying products or services. As of 1 May 2022, enhanced consumer protection is expected to enter into force in Sweden. The enhanced protection entails a number of changes in the consumer area to adapt it to today's digitized consumer market. Below we have listed some of the changes that we consider to be most relevant for the majority of our customers.

A new Consumer Sales Act (Valid from 1 May 2022)

  • Digital products and services: The Consumer Sales Act will now also cover products with digital content (for example a computer or a mobile) and digital services (for example e-books, streaming services or cloud services). This means that the act will also cover the sale of this type of digital products and services, which is not the case today.

  • The warranty period is extended from 6 months to 2 years: The current Consumer Sales Act states that the warranty period* for a product must be at least six months from the purchase. This period will be extended to two years. For digital content and services, a one-year warranty period will apply instead, provided that the service / product has been delivered on an individual occasion. However, if it’s a matter of continuous delivery (for example, subscription of a streaming service), the warranty period will apply throughout the entire contract period.

  • "Free" digital services in exchange for personal data = consumer purchases: The situation where an individual provides personal data as a form of "payment" to gain access to digital content will be considered a purchase and covered by the new Consumer Sales Act.

Example: An individual registers an account on Instagram with their name and e-mail address, this information is then used for other purposes than Instagram’s ability to provide its service.

  • Complaint: The consumer will have the right to choose between remedy or re-delivery in case the product has a defect, provided that this can be achieved without an "unreasonable" cost for the seller. If the defect is crucial, the consumer has the right to cancel the purchase, unless the seller can prove that the defect is of minor nature.

  • No more ”sold in ‘as is’ condition”!: General disclaimers as ”sold in ‘as is’ condition” will not have any effect. Instead, the company will have to inform about such deviations separately and the consumer must explicitly approve the deviations. Certain requirements regarding how such information is presented to the consumer will also apply.

  • Requirement to provide the latest version: When selling digital services or content, the company will, as a main rule, always have to provide the latest digital version. In addition, the company will be obliged to provide information about updates and offer such in order for the product or service to work properly for a certain period (depending on the product or service) after the purchase.

*If a defect occurs within a certain time (today 6 months) from the purchase date, it will be assumed to have existed at the time of purchase unless the seller can prove otherwise, or if it is a defect that could not possibly have existed when the product was sold.

A modernized consumer protection (Valid from 1 July 2022)

  • Risk of extensive fines - 4% of the company's annual turnover: Powerful penalty fees similar to the Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will apply in the event of a breach of the consumer protection legislation.

  • The obligation to provide information is extended: The company's obligation to provide the consumer with certain information about the content of the product or service, before entering into an agreement, is extended.

  • Delivered “digital” product: If a product also contains digital parts, the product will not be considered delivered until both the physical property and the digital parts have been provided to the consumer.

  • Do you run an e-commerce business? If that is the case, you must state, in connection with the purchase, that you are a trader and what rules apply to the purchase. 

  • "Sale", “campaign”, "promotion": In the event of price reductions (for example, in connection with campaigns and sales), the company must state the lowest price that has applied during the last 30 days as the regular price.

  • Customer reviews (Trustpilot, Reco, Google, Facebook): If the company uses customer reviews, it must ensure that the reviews come from real customers – that is customers who have actually used or purchased the relevant products. In addition, the company must inform about how this has been ensured.

Disclaimer:
Please note: Pocketlaw is not a substitute for an attorney or law firm. So, should you have any legal questions on the content of this page, please get in touch with a qualified legal professional.

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