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Withdrawal from the service contract by the consumer

Caution

These rules and regulations also apply to all traders from EU Member States operating in Austria.

Consumers from Austria can withdraw from a contract concluded at a distance – i.e. including those concluded with online shops – within a certain period. The right of withdrawal applies even if it is not mentioned in the contract!

In general, there is no right of withdrawal in the case of

  • services for which the price is dependent on fluctuations in the financial market which cannot be controlled by the trader and which may occur within the withdrawal period, and
  • services relating to
    • the provision of accommodation (other than for residential purposes),
    • the transport of goods,
    • car rental,
    • catering, and
    • leisure activities,

if the contract provides for a specific date or period of performance.

Provision of services in full – provision of services in part

If the consumer withdraws from a service contract (other than those already mentioned above) within the withdrawal period, it is necessary to distinguish whether the service has already been provided by the trader in full or only in part.

The consumer may withdraw from a service contract within the 14-day withdrawal period in any event if the online shop operator has not yet provided a service.

Provision of services in full

The consumer does not have a right of withdrawal if the online shop operator started to perform the service before the expiry of the withdrawal period and that service has been provided in full before the expiry of the withdrawal period.

The conditions for the absence of a right of withdrawal are that the

  • consumer has expressly requested that performance of the contract is to begin before the expiry of the withdrawal period and
  • the consumer has confirmed that he/she is aware that there is no longer a right of withdrawal if the contract is performed in full.

If one of the aforementioned conditions is not met, the consumer is entitled to withdraw from the contract even if the online shop operator has already provided the service in full.

If the consumer has never expressly requested (first condition) that the contract be performed before the expiry of the withdrawal period, he/she may withdraw from the contract. In this case, there is also no obligation to pay for the service already provided.

Provision of services in part

The consumer can withdraw from the service contract even after the online shop operator has already started to provide the service.

However, withdrawal from the contract is possible only within the applicable withdrawal period. In addition, a proportionate amount must be paid for the service already provided. The proportionate amount to be paid by the consumer is calculated on the basis of the total price agreed. This means that the consumer has to pay a proportionate amount for the service which the online shop operator has already provided up until the point of the declaration of the consumer’s withdrawal.

Please note

However, the consumer only has to pay a proportionate amount for the provision of a service if he/she has expressly requested that performance of the contract is to begin before the expiry of the withdrawal period, and he/she has been informed of his/her right of withdrawal and the obligation to make a proportionate payment in the event of withdrawal.

In the event that the online shop operator has not informed the consumer of the existence of a right of withdrawal and the obligation to make a proportionate payment in the event of withdrawal, the consumer does not have to pay a proportionate fee even for services already provided in the event of withdrawal. The same applies if the consumer has not expressly requested that performance of the contract is to begin before the expiry of the withdrawal period.

Legal basis

Fern- und Auswärtsgeschäfte-Gesetz (FAGG)

Translated by the European Commission
last update: 27 July 2020

responsible for content: Federal Ministry of Justice

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