Looks like you won’t find customer phone support for Amazon in Europe anymore. Europe’s top court has announced in a ruling that the e-commerce giant isn’t obligated to provide a helpline phone number in the region.
The German Federal Union of Consumer Organizations and Associations said that the company’s German website reportedly breached the country’s consumer protection laws by not having customers know about its telephone and fax numbers. The European Court however, has ruled against, saying that Amazon isn’t obliged to make a telephone number available.
Nonetheless, the court did ask for effective substitutes. The tech juggernaut must sort to communicate with its customers “quickly” and “efficiently.” Automated and online chat is what the company currently offers, which is not sufficient enough to live up to its legal obligation.
“An e-commerce platform such as Amazon is not obliged in all cases to make a telephone number available to consumers before the conclusion of a contract,” judges said.
However, Amazon is quite happy about the decision.
“We were always confident that our call back service is fast, efficient and customer-focused. The ECJ has now confirmed that the possibilities we offer for establishing contact are in line with the spirit and purpose as well as the requirements of the Consumer Rights Directive.” said the company.
This might not be the most reassuring thing for someone who prefers to talk to a human being when in need. But then, with Amazon’s well oiled automated call-back machinery and various chat methods, it rarely is the need. The announcement surely has smaller businesses in benefit. They wouldn’t have to spend the time and resources on the phone support that one merely uses.