Key facts of the case:
Reference for a preliminary ruling — Consumer protection — Unfair terms in consumer contracts — Consumer credit agreement — Procedure for the issue of an order for payment based on a promissory note which secures claims under a consumer credit agreement — Inability of the court to determine whether the contractual terms are unfair if the consumer does not take any legal action
Outcome of the case:
In the light of the foregoing considerations, I propose that the Court answer the request for a preliminary ruling from the Sąd Rejonowy w Siemianowicach Śląskich (District Court, Siemianowice Śląskie, Poland) as follows:
The provisions of the Unfair Contract Terms Directive must be interpreted as precluding national legislation, such as that in question in the main proceedings, in so far as the latter provides that an order for payment based on a formally valid promissory note which secures claims of a seller or supplier against a consumer under a loan agreement is issued without any assessment of whether the terms of that loan agreement are unfair and it makes it excessively difficult for the consumer to lodge an objection to an order for payment by permitting the courts to assess the unfairness only when a corresponding complaint has been made by the consumer, by requiring the consumer to adduce the facts and evidence which enable the court to make this assessment within two weeks of service of the order for payment, and by prejudicing the consumer as far as his bearing of court costs is concerned.