What is a consumer issue?
The Consumer Code of Catalonia (Act 22/2010, of 20 July, on the Consumer Code of Catalonia) talks of consumer issues when the following conditions are met:
- There is a consumer relationship between the two parties (selling of goods and/or provision of services), in any of the following stages:
- Sale of goods or provision of services
- Subsequent obligations
- The claimant is a natural person (“individual”), a non-profit association or a community of property owners.
- The claimant acts outside any business or professional activity.
- The party against which a claim is being made is not a natural person (except for freelancers).
The following are consumer issues
- Utility supplies (water, gas and electricity)
- Telephone services and internet access
- Tourist services
- Restaurant services
- Home services
- Financial services
- Product purchases or repairs
The following are not consumer issues
- Labour disputes
- Civil rights
- Issues concerning relations between communities of property owners
- Relations with the public authorities
- When a consumer issue is involved in legal proceedings and/or may become a criminal matter, it cannot be handled by OMIC, as the Consumer Code of Catalonia has no jurisdiction over such cases
- If I do not agree with a hotel bill or the services provided, that IS a consumer issue.
- If I have had my possessions stolen from a hotel room or I have fallen over in the reception area and injured myself, that is NOT a consumer issue.
- If I am a taxi driver and my taxi is not properly repaired, that is NOT a consumer issue, because I am not the end user of this vehicle. If my own personal vehicle is not properly repaired, that IS a consumer issue.
- If a company demands payment of a debt and I do not agree with it, that IS a consumer issue, but, if I have already received a legal summons, it is NOT a consumer issue.
- If I move out of a rented flat and the owner does not return my deposit, that IS a consumer issue, though NOT every dispute that may arise under a lease is a consumer issue.
- If I have had an accident at work and I have a dispute with the company's insurance, that is NOT a consumer issue.
- If I have private healthcare insurance and I have a dispute over it, that IS a consumer issue.
- If I do not agree with the gym's invoice, even if it is a municipal gym, that IS a consumer issue, though if I do not agree with the price of a green area parking space, that is NOT a consumer issue.
- If I am having building work done on my property and it is not being done correctly, that IS a consumer issue. If the neighbour above plays music too loudly, that is NOT a consumer issue.