A consumer is a person who purchases goods or services for himself or his family. Therefore, every citizen who spends money, regardless of age, is a consumer. Businesses such as supermarkets, hairdressers, insurance companies or online stores offer the opportunity to buy. When a contract is concluded between a consumer and a business, the Consumer Protection Act applies.
An agreement occurs when a consumer purchases or orders a product. Unless otherwise agreed, the contract may not be modified. The seller must deliver the product within the agreed time and the buyer will be responsible for paying the price within the agreed time. Sometimes it is still possible to cancel the deal. The condition for cancellation is that the seller agrees to the cancellation of the sale, gives the right to exchange and return the product, or the goods or services ordered are defective or do not correspond to the products ordered.
People under the age of 18 cannot make large purchases on their own. For example, a pet, a moped, a gym membership, or an international trip require adult consent. Also, children under 18 years of age cannot take a loan. If a minor has made an unauthorized purchase, the seller is responsible for the sale and parents may demand that the sale to be canceled.
In the case of distance selling in Finland, consumer protection is stronger than ordinary trade. For example, if you buy a winter coat from an online store, it is a good idea to read the store cancellation instructions before ordering. If the jacket is not suitable, it is always possible to return it to a new condition within 14 days. Return policies may vary between companies.
Sometimes there are problems with trading. For example, a business may fail to deliver the product ordered and paid for, or the product is defective and the company assumes no responsibility. Usually, the stores want to correct their mistake and complete the trade with honor. If you find a mistake, contact the store directly and make a valid and clear complaint.
You can contact your Consumer Advisor by phone, online or face to face. Guidance is free of charge. If the dispute cannot be resolved, the matter may be referred to the Consumer Disputes Board.