Do you know your rights in case of defected service or goods purchased in Estonia? What can you ask from the trader?

Buying goods and services in Estonia

In case you have purchased or ordered a product or a service and later discovered a defect, even though the maintenance has been correct – you should immediately gather all documents certifying the performance of a purchase and then contact the trader. You should explain the arisen problem to the trader and suggest a solution you find suitable. If the oral communication is without result, you must submit your complaint in written. According to the Estonian Consumer Protection Act the trader is obliged to accept the written complaint and answer to consumer within 15 days. The trader will either meet your demands or he or she will find that a claim from you is unfounded because of a misuse of a purchased item – in such case the trader must prove his claim with an expert assessment.

In order to simplify the solution of an arisen problem you should keep all documents certifying the performance of a purchase (receipt, contract etc). Without these documents or any other proof the trader has no obligation to grant your complaint.

Consumers, who buy goods in Estonia, are entitled to a two-year legal guarantee on products. Within the first six months of purchase, any lack of conformity or defect shall be presumed to have existed at the time of delivery, unless proved otherwise. After the first six months have elapsed, it is up to the consumer to prove that the lack of conformity existed at the time of delivery. A consumer or his or her representative may submit the complaint to the trader not later than two months, in case he or she has already discovered a defect on a purchased service. 
 
Within the two-year legal guarantee period, the consumer is entitled to have the goods brought into conformity, free of charge. Firstly, consumer may require the seller to repair or replace the goods, unless this is impossible or disproportionate. Any repair or replacement shall be completed within a reasonable time (approximately two weeks) and without any significant inconvenience to you, taking account of the nature of the goods. If the repair or replacement is impossible or disproportionate (for example a trader is not able to repair or replace the purchased product; repairing of the product is unsuccessful; trader has not eliminated the defect within a reasonable time) a consumer is entitled to ask for a price reduction or to have the contract rescinded.

Expenses, relating to the elimination of the defect (postage, transportation, labor), must be paid by the trader. By staying polite and reasonable towards the trader, you have much bigger chances of finding a suitable solution to your problem.

In case of defected service the consumer has the right to demand for:

  • lowering the price;
  • repairs without any cost to the consumer himself;
  • replacement of the purchase with an identical product or a service.

The consumer has the right to recede from an agreement and demand for a refund in case of a substantial breach of the contract.

What is considered a substantial defect?

  • when repairing the product or the services is not possible or it is unsuccessful;
  • when contractor unjustifiably refuses to do the necessary repairs;
  • when contractor fails on delivering the substitute product or service within a reasonable time;
  • when on repairing the product or on substituting the product with an identical one, there has been caused some unjustified discomfort to the consumer.

In mentioned cases the consumer does not have to name a new deadline for the contractor – he or she has the right to recede from an agreement.

Case-law of the Court of Justice