An aspect that significantly impacts the consumer’s rights in the sharing economy is whether an agreement is entered into by two private persons or the service provider is a company or a private person who sells products commercially. The key difference between these is that consumer protection provisions are not applied to sales trans-actions between two private persons.
A private person as a service provider
- If a sales transaction or other agreement is between two private persons, the parties to the agreement are responsible for their obligations according to the agreement they have entered into.
- If the problem is not resolved: The consumer can contact the sharing platform’s mediation service, if it has one. The consumer authorities cannot help with problems where two private per-sons have entered into an agreement.
If, on the other hand, the service provider is a company or a private person who sells products commercially
- The service provider is usually responsible for finding a solution when problems arise.
- If the sales or other agreement is between a company or a private person who sells products commercially and a consumer, the buyer can assert their right to consumer protection. Finnish law does not include separate provisions on delays or defects in services, so the general principles of contract law and consumer law are applied to how defects in the service are assessed.
- If a problem cannot be resolved: in the event of a dispute, the consumer or company can contact Consumer Advisory Services and ask for advice in how to resolve the matter.