The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has imposed a fine of 1,250,000 euros on Dutch energy company Innova Energie B.V. for offering energy contacts with too high termination fees to consumers.
Innova Energie imposed on consumers contract with unreasonably high termination fees, in some cases up to 1,000 euros per customer in order to make them less attractive to switch to another energy supplier. Consumer protection rules apply to the supply of natural gas and electricity for private consumption, even if the supply contract was signed by an independent contractor or some other small-business owner. In those circumstances, termination fees cannot exceed 250 euros for gas and electricity. That’s why, energy suppliers are checking actively whether customers are entitled to consumer protection in order to be able to apply high termination fees.
As a result, Innova Energie has been fined because it continued to offer contracts with too high termination fees to customers who are entitled to consumer protection even though ACM reminded Innova Energie about the consumer protection rules.
NAZALI TAX & LEGAL