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CYPRUS CONSUMER CENTER FOR ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION

The Law on Alternative Resolution of Consumer Disputes of 2017 (85(I)/2017) obligates businesses to inform consumers regarding the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Bodies by which they are covered in the event that consumer disputes arise. If a business refuses to or omits to do so, it is subject to a fine imposed by the Consumer Potection Service.

An Alternative Dispute Resolution Body is a Body approved by the Consumer Protection Service and which has been permanently established, offering dispute resolution services by means of an ADR procedure and has been registered in the inventory kept by the Service.

The benefits of a business in being subject to an Alternative Dispute Resolution Body and the advantages of ADR are numerous, as set out below.

Benefits of Alternative Dispute Resolution for Businesses

Competitiveness

A business that voluntarily subjects itself to an ADR Body is more competitive against other businesses, since it provides a service which may not be provided by its competitors.

The consumer automatically considers such businesses to be more serious and professional than others, knowing that in the event of a dispute, it will be resolved by an independent ADR Body.

Good Customer Service

Knowing in advance that in the event of a dispute, it will be resolved by an independent registered ADR Body, also has a positive effect on the business’s image towards the customer/consumer, as an element of good customer service.

Avoiding Complaints

Complaints by the consumer to the Consumer Protection Service can be avoided. According to the Law, the Consumer Protection Service ensures the proper dissemination of information on how consumers can resort to ADR procedures to resolve their disputes.

Avoiding Direct Conflict

ADR procedures are friendlier and avoid direct conflict between the parties, as opposed to Court proceedings. This is especially important where the relationship between the parties (the business and the consumer) continues even after a dispute has arisen.

Expedience and Costs

Alternative Dispute Resolution Procedures are more expedient than Court proceedings with significantly lower costs. According to the Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution Bodies, ought to examine a Consumer complaint within 90 days. This increases the effectiveness of the business by avoiding time-wasting and costly legal/court procedures.

Avoiding Negative Publicity

In addition, a dispute between a business and a consumer is resolved expediently and directly, without prolonged negative publicity, that would otherwise result from ignoring the consumer’s complaint or allowing for the dispute to end up in Court.

Flexible Procedures

ADR procedures are more flexible, taking place at the agreed upon time and place that is convenient for the parties and strict procedural rules need not be followed.

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I, the Trader, by submitting this application (the “Membership Application”) to the Cyprus Consumer Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution (A.D.R. Cyprus Center Ltd) (the “Center”), on acceptance of my Membership Application by the Center, agree to be bound by the following terms and conditions of the Center.
1. I will be bound by the Rules of Mediation, Conciliation and Arbitration (“ADR Rules”) of the Center which are hereby incorporated in this contract by reference when a Dispute arises between me and any any natural person who is acting for purposes which are outside his trade, business, craft or profession (the “Consumer”) who has entered into a service or sales contract with me.
2. I will inform Consumers that any dispute raised by them can be resolved by the Center in accordance with the Rules of the Center. In accordance with the Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes Law (L. 85(I)/2017) I shall also:
i. Make public on my website the website of the Center www.adr.com.cy
ii. Explain to the consumer the process of submitting a dispute and also provide such consumer with any documents required to submit the dispute.
iii. Add in my contracts with Consumers the terms mentioned in the Annex:
3. The procedure will take place in a place and time which the Center decides.
4. I will pay the fees of the Mediator, Conciliator, Arbitrator (the “ADR Specialist”) in accordance with the ADR Rules.
5. I shall send a full description of the facts and any supporting evidence which I believe are true to the Center as soon as I receive the Consumer’s dispute request.
6. I will abide by Law 159(I)/2012 on Certain Aspects of Mediation in Civil Disputes.
7. I can withdraw from the ADR procedure of Mediation and Conciliation as soon as a Mediator or Conciliator is appointed.
8. I will do my best in order to try and solve the dispute with the Consumer in good faith.
9. I will keep the procedure confidential and any documents received by me or sent by me will be treated as confidential and will remain confidential even after the ADR procedure has been completed or terminated for any reason.
10. All of the terms of this agreement are essential and binding between the Center the Trader and are incorporated into the Consumer application to submit a dispute to the Center.
11. This Agreement is valid for a period of 2 years from the date the Membership Application is accepted by the Center.
12. I will keep the Center or the Natural Person in charge of ADR harmless from any liability or damage caused to me for any reason whatsoever. The Center and any Natural Person in charge of ADR are not liable in case of lawsuit, application or other legal procedure against them in relation to any act or omission during the exercise of its powers or under the Law.
13. I also agree and give my consent that any personal data submitted with this application will be disclosed to third parties including the website of the Center, the Center’s databases, the Consumer and the ADR Specialist.
14. This Agreement is valid for a period of 2 years.

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