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Slovak Republic

Litigation      

The Slovak Republic implemented the EC Product Liability Directive through an act that imposes strict liability on producers for property damage (exceeding approximately € 645) and damage to a consumer’s health and life caused by a faulty product. It also fixes the maximum amount for which a party can be held liable for damages caused by a defective product at SKK 3,500 million (about € 116 million). A more detailed legal regulation concerning liability for product faults is contained in the general provisions on damage compensation in the Slovak Civil Code.

Criminal liability for product faults is regulated by the Slovak Criminal Code, which stipulates that, in cases when a producer introduces products, works or services to the market and withholds details of their substantial faults, that producer commits the criminal offence of damaging the consumer and may be imprisoned for up to 10 years. The damaged party may also demand compensation as part of the penal proceedings but only on condition that the damaged party exerts its claim properly in a timely way within the criminal proceedings. 

Regulation     

Apart from the above mentioned, the introduction and sale of products to the consumer at market is governed by the Act dealing with Technical Requirements of Products and the Evaluation of Conformity. In addition, specific legislation has been enacted covering individual types of products and stipulating the technical standards and requirements that must be met before these products can be introduced to the Slovak market.

The regulatory body overseeing consumer protection is the Slovak Trade Inspectorate (STI). However, certain products, such as food, chemicals, drugs, precious metals, energy and telecommunication services, are regulated by particular departments within the state. During so-called administrative proceedings, a supervisory body may impose fines or other administrative measures for breach of obligations stipulated under Act no. 250/2007 Coll. on Consumer Protection, as amended (the ACP). The ACP stipulates the general obligation of the seller to introduce only safe products to the market.

When a product is ascertained to be faulty, its producer will be obliged to withdraw that product from the market. In deciding how to punish the producer, the supervisory body will consider the product price, as well as the seriousness, manner, duration and consequences of the illegal actions. 

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Slovak Republic

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Note past results are not guarantees of future results. Each matter is individual and will be decided on its own facts.