The Act on Distance Contracts and Off-Premises Contracts

Lagen om distansavtal och avtal utanför affärslokaler - English

When your company sells goods or services remotely, for example via the internet or in a location outside your business premises, the Act on Distance Contracts and Off-Premises Contracts applies. Among other things, this law requires the company to provide the consumer with certain information before selling anything. It also gives the consumer the right to withdraw her/his purchase for no particular reason.

The law applies

  • When your company enter into distance contracts, i.e. contracts via mail order, TV shops, the internet, or as a result of telemarketing.
  • When you are outside your business premises. Business premises are fixed or mobile premises that you use permanently or seasonally in your business. For example, home sales, home parties and street sales are off-premises.
  • When your company contact the consumer outside your business premises and then immediately enter into a contract on the premises.

When the right of withdrawal does not apply

There are exceptions to which the right of withdrawal does not apply. In such instances, you will need to inform the consumer of this. 

Examples of goods and services where the right of withdrawal does not apply:

  • Travel and accommodation, such as airline tickets and hotel stays.
  • Goods that can deteriorate rapidly, such as food.
  • Leisure activities carried out on a given day or for a limited period of time, such as cultural events and football matches.
  • Single copies of a newspaper or magazine.
  • Goods that are custom-made according to the consumer’s wishes or that are of a clearly personal nature, such as family photos.
  • Goods that have been sealed for reasons of health or hygiene, and the seal has been broken by the consumer, e.g. underwear.
  • Digital content delivered in some way other than on a physical medium (USB stick, CD, DVD, etc.), e.g. apps, music, and computer programmes that the consumer streams or downloads. If she/he chooses to have the content delivered digitally, the consumer must have expressly agreed that there is no right of withdrawal.
  • Off-premises contracts, if the total amount the consumer must pay is less than SEK 400.

You must always provide information about the right of withdrawal

Under the law, the consumer has 14 days to withdraw her/his purchase, and it is your duty to inform her/him of this. The withdrawal period takes effect on the day after the consumer has received the item. If the purchase is a service, the withdrawal period begins the day after the contract has been concluded. If the last day of the withdrawal period falls during a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday, the withdrawal period is extended so that it also applies to the next weekday.

If you fail to give the consumer correct information about the right to withdraw a purchase, the consumer then has up to one year to withdraw, above the original withdrawal period.

More about what applies when the customer withdraws her/his distance purchase (information in English)

Template for information about the right of withdrawal

PDF 139 KB. Öppnas i nytt fönster.

Information and template available in Swedish.

How should you inform the consumer?

In the case of distance contracts, you should provide the information before a contract is concluded, in a way that is adapted to the sales method. This means that when selling over the telephone, you can provide the information orally, whereas in a web shop you can provide the information in the general terms and conditions. In the case of telemarketing, information about the withdrawal form may be provided via a reference to the company’s website, while in online sales the form is provided on the website.

If you enter into contracts outside your business premises, you must provide the information in paper form, including the withdrawal form. If the consumer agrees, you can provide the information in a different legible and durable form, such as an e-mail.

Both in the case of distance contracts and contracts concluded outside the company’s business premises, you must also give the consumer a confirmation of the purchase. The confirmation must be provided in a legible and durable form and must include, inter alia, the withdrawal form and information on the right of withdrawal (if the form and information have not already been provided in the correct form).

Examples of information you must provide:

  • Name, address and company registration number
  • The primary characteristics of the item or service
  • Price and conditions of payment, including taxes and fees
  • Terms of delivery
  • The conditions for the right of withdrawal
  • The right to file a complaint
  • The withdrawal form

Special rules for telemarketing

There are special rules that apply when you contact a consumer by telephone in order to enter into a distance contract. The rules mean, among other things, that the consumer must accept your offer in writing in order for the contract to be valid. It is also important that you clearly and intelligibly inform the consumer about what the offer entails and what terms apply.

Learn more about the rules for telemarketing here (information in Swedish)

Proofread 26 February 2024

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