The Alternative Dispute Resolution in the non-banking financial field
The Financial Supervisory Authority (ASF) established the Alternative Dispute Resolution Entity in the non-banking financial field (ADR-FIN), formed under the provisions of Government Ordinance no. 38/2015 on alternative dispute resolution between consumers and traders, offering a resolution to the dispute in the non-banking financial field further to ADR procedure and operating exclusively within the ASF.
ADR-FIN is organized and is operating in accordance with the provisions of ASF Regulation 4/2016 on organization and functioning of Alternative Dispute Resolution Entity in the non-banking financial field (ADR-FIN) and in accordance with specific subsequent procedures.
ADR-FIN mission is to solve, throug alternative dispute resolution procedures, disputes between consumers, such as they are defined by art. 2 of the Government Ordinance no. 21/1992 on consumer protection, republished, subsequently amended and supplemented, and, the authorized entities, regulated and/or supervised by the ASF.
ADR-FIN is the only alternative dispute resolution entity in the fields in which ASF is competent, organizing and managing SAL procedures, which proposes or imposes, as appropriate, a solution to the parties.
In order to resolve a dispute with a professional through the application of the SAL procedure, the consumer must express this option on a voluntary basis and to apply to SAL-FIN in writing, directly at the headquarter of SAL-FIN, by post or by electronic means of coomunication.
The consumer may apply to any of these dispute resolution means, without excluding each other, except in the cases expressly provided for in GO no. 38/2015.
The main responsibility of SAL-FIN consists in organizing and managing SAL procedures on national or cross-border disputes arising from sales or service contracts concluded between consumers and authorized entities, regulated and/or supervised by ASF.
Consumers may apply to the SAL procedures managed by SAL-FIN if they prove that they first tried to resolve their disputes directly with the trader concerned.
Dispute organization and alternative resolution shall be made throug the SAL procedure which shall propose or impose a solution , detailed in Annex no. 1, respectively Annex no. 2, which are an integral part of the ASF Regulation no. 4/2016 on organization and functioning of Alternative Dispute Resolution Entity in the non-banking financial field (ADR-FIN).
ADR-FIN also have the following responsibilities:
- To verify the eligibility conditions of persons to be entered in the Register of Conciliators and who have the competence to apply SAL procedures;
- To submit for approval by ASF’s Board the registration of eligible conciliators in the Register of Conciliators;
- To assist the parties, upon request, in the choice of the SAL procedure;
- To maintain a website(SAL-FIN.ro), constantly updated, which allows easy access for the parties to information on the SAL procedures developed and supports online dispute resolution;
- To publish on its website, on a reliable medium if required, and by any other means considered appropriate, the information on SAL procedures and any necessary documents, in accordance with art. 7, paragraph (1) of GO no. 38/2015;
- To allow the consumer to submit its dispute online, as well as in writing, on paper or on another durable medium, as appropriate;
- To facilitate the exchange of information and documents for the parties in relation to the dispute, by electronic means or by mail, as appropriate;
- To cooperate with other SAL entities for the resolution of cross-border disputes;
- To cooperate with other SAL entities, through the exchange of information regarding the disputes resolved, following the evolution of their resolution, and to carry out regular exchanges of good practice as regards cross-border and national dispute resolution;
- To send the information concerning the disputes resolved to the competent authority in accordance with art. 18, paragraph (4) of GO no.38/2015;
- To submit to ASF’s Board, on an annual basis or at its request, within the time limit set by GO no. 38/2015, the information regarding the following:
- The number of disputes received and types of complaints to which they related;
- The average time taken to resolve disputes;
- The rate of SAL procedures which were discontinued and cause of discontinuance;
- The rate of compliance, if known, with outcomes of the SAL procedures;
- Any recurrant problems leading to disputes between consumers and traders; the information provided in this regard may be accompanied by recommendations on how these problems could be avoided or resolved in the future;
- An assessment of the effectiveness of their cooperation within networks of SAL entities facilitating the resolution of cross-border disputes, as the case may be;
- An assessment of the effectiveness of the SAL procedure offered by the entity and of possible ways of improving its performance;
- To publish on its website and, upon request, on durable medium, the annual activity reports which shall include the information referred to in Art. 7, paragraph (2) of GO no. 38/2015.
ASF Regulation 4/2016 on organization and functioning of Alternative Dispute Resolution Entity in the non-banking financial field (ADR-FIN)
For more informations please visit the official ADR-FIN website: http://www.salfin.ro/