Zheng Sophia Tang (Leeds University) has posted Consumer Collective Redress in European Private International Law on SSRN.
Collective redress is a cost-sharing and procedure-consolidating mechanism. In the area of consumer litigation, it is introduced primarily to compensate the weakness of expensive and time-consuming court proceedings in small claims in order to increase consumers’ access to justice. Consumer contractual claims are characterised as of small value, which largely discourages individual consumers from resorting to judicial action to protect their legal rights. Collective redress combines separate consumer claims against the same defendant based on the similar circumstances into one single action. It is helpful to resolve the litigation difficulty, to promote consumers’ access to redress and to improve good commercial performance. A recent survey shows 76% of European consumers would be more willing to defend their rights in court if they could join other consumers. It is also believed that collective redress could offer businesses an opportunity to resolve an issue once rather than having repeated proceedings.