Shanghai Consumer Council instituted a public welfare lawsuit that was accepted by Shanghai First Intermediate People’s Court. In view of this case, the spokesperson of CCA said in an interview on July 2 that CCA supports Shanghai Consumer Council to perform its statutory duties and lodge public interest lawsuits against infringements upon consumers’ legitimate rights and interests according to the law and gives its thumbs up to all actions safeguarding consumers’ rights and interests.
On July 1, Shanghai Consumer Council lodged a lawsuit to Shanghai First Intermediate People’s Court against Tianjin Samsung Telecom Technology Co., Ltd. and Guangdong Oppo Mobile Communications Co., Ltd. respectively for their infringements upon consumers’ rights and interests by pre-installing without notifications app software that cannot be uninstalled in their phones. At this point, the court has accepted these two public welfare lawsuit cases. This comes as the first-ever public interest actions handled domestically for safeguarding consumers’ rights.
The spokesperson of CCA noted that CCA gives its thumps up to all actions safeguarding consumers’ rights and interests according to the law and supports the action of Shanghai Consumer Council. The public welfare lawsuit system for the protection of consumers’ rights can more effectively safeguard consumers’ overall interests and have a great significance to reinforcing social governance according to the law. The new Consumer Protection Law clearly stipulates that filing public welfare lawsuits against infringements upon consumers’ rights and interests is the statutory duty of CCA and provincial consumer associations.
Since the enforcement of the new Consumer Protection Law, CCA and provincial consumer associations have been actively collecting related cases of complaints and conducted in-depth theoretical studies and practical explorations under the support of all circles. This time, Shanghai Consumer Council filed a public welfare lawsuit respectively against Samsung and OPPO for their pre-installation of mobile phone software that cannot be uninstalled. Previously, Zhejiang Consumer Council lodged a public welfare lawsuit for the fact that consumers must pay the full fare for buying another train ticket after losing one ticket bought through the real-name system for ticket purchase (the case has not yet be accepted). Both these cases are part of the fulfillment of duties by consumer associations nationwide to institute public welfare lawsuit. These cases have also become helpful explorations of consumer associations in conducting public welfare lawsuits. Public welfare lawsuit for protection of consumers’ rights targets at behaviors infringing most consumers’ legitimate rights and interests, involving social public interest protection. Most targets of public welfare lawsuit for protection of consumers’ rights involve monopolized industries and powerful enterprises, so various kinds of pressures and puzzles lie ahead. Going forward, CCA and consumer associations nationwide will keep strengthening their fulfillment of duties bestowed by the Consumer Protection Law, promote the implementation of the public welfare lawsuit system for protection of consumers’ rights, firmly safeguard consumers’ legitimate rights and interests, overcome difficulties, and unswervingly facilitate the progress in safeguarding consumers’ rights and interests.
The spokesperson of CCA also said that protecting consumers’ legitimate rights and interests is the common responsibility of the entire society. The advancement of public welfare lawsuit for protection of consumers’ rights requires a strong support of all sectors of society. It is believed that the determination of the new Consumer Protection Law and a series of new systems protecting consumers’ rights and interests including public welfare lawsuit for protection of consumers’ rights are bound to play a role under the framework of “the rule by law” and under the common concern and effort of the entire society. Consequently, consumer’s rights and interests are certain to be better protected.
Links: Public Welfare Lawsuit Reform Experimentation of the Highest Procuratorate Organs
On July 2, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate convened a press conference on releasing the Plan on Procuratorate Organs’ Public Welfare Lawsuit Reform Experimentation (hereinafter referred to as “reform experimentation plan”) and reported related works.
The Supreme People’s Procuratorate will choose 13 provinces, autonomous regions and municipality directly under the central government, namely, Beijing, Inner Mongolia, Jilin, Jiangsu, Anhui, Fujian, Shandong, Hubei, Guangdong, Guizhou, Yunnan, Shaanxi and Gansu as the places for implementing the reform experimentation plan. The term of the pilot program will be two years. In accordance with the Civil Procedure Law and the spirit of the decision of the Fourth Plenary Session of the CPC Central Committee, the reform experimentation plan includes stipulations on procuratorate organs’ civil public welfare lawsuit and administrative public welfare lawsuit. During the experimenting stage, the reform experimentation plan identifies the scope of civil public welfare lawsuit as the cases harming social public interests, including consumers’ legitimate rights and interests discovered by procuratorate organs in performing duties. These may include environmental pollution and violation of food and drug safety. According to the decision of the Fourth Plenary Session of the CPC Central Committee, the scope of administrative public welfare lawsuit is determined as the cases in which administrative organs with supervision and management responsibilities in ecological environmental and resources protection, state assets protection and state-owned land-use right transfer violate the law to exercise their powers or commit negative acts that may harm national and social public interests. During the experimenting stage, the focus is to lodge public welfare lawsuit for eco-environmental and resources protection.
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