Development of an efficient consumer complaints system

In 2015, Denmark implemented a new system for handling consumer complaints. Unlike before, the system focuses on mediation, with both companies and consumers involved in finding a solution to their dispute.

After the first year, the experiences of the new complaints system have been positive. About 60 percent of the consumer complaints received by the Competition and Consumer Authority are resolved by the parties reaching a solution with the assistance of the complaints system’s mediators.

The average processing time for mediated cases has been almost halved compared to processing times in similar cases in the previous system. And most consumers and businesses generally express satisfaction with the system.

On January 1, 2017, the public consumer complaints system moved from the Competition and Consumer Authority to the House of Committees in Viborg. The House of Committees is a new authority under the Danish Ministry of Business and Industry.

The article describes the use of nudging and active involvement of consumers and companies in the new complaints system as well as the experiences of the system.