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A new regulatory framework for extra-judicial consumer redress: where we are and how to move forward

  • Pablo Cortés (a1)

This paper examines the new legal framework on consumer Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in the EU. Its primary contribution lies in identifying that harmonising the complaint submission in a pan-European Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) platform, and directing parties to nationally approved ADR entities that comply with minimum standards, will not fulfil the potential of an extra-judicial consumer redress system. This paper proposes key functions that the ODR platform should incorporate if it is to provide effective redress. This paper also argues that a successful ODR platform should include built-in incentives that encourage parties to: (i) participate in approved ADR processes; (ii) settle complaints with little or no intervention from neutral third parties; and (iii) ensure voluntary compliance with final outcomes.

Corresponding author
Pablo Cortés, Senior Lecturer, School of Law, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester LE1 7RH, UK. Email:
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I wish to acknowledge the support given by the University of Leicester in granting me a semester of study leave to conduct this research. I would also like to thank DG SANCO, Fernando Esteban de la Rosa, Julia Hörnle, Christopher Hodges, Colin Rule, Joseph Savirimuthu, Patricia Ypma and Hannah Bill for reading earlier drafts and discussing many of the ideas contained in this paper. Thanks are also due to the two anonymous reviewers for their informed and constructive comments. The usual disclaimers apply.

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Legal Studies
  • ISSN: 0261-3875
  • EISSN: 1748-121X
  • URL: /core/journals/legal-studies
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