1. Introductory Provisions
1.1. These rules (hereinafter the “Rules”) regulate the process of efforts to reach an agreement between disputing parties with the participation of a third, impartial party - a mediator, within the meaning of Article 12 of Regulation by European Parliament and Council No. 2019/1150, on support of justice and transparency for commercial users of on-line mediation services (hereinafter the “Regulation”). The parties to the dispute, which is to be resolved within the meaning of these Rules, may only be:
1.1.1. the operator of the Heureka.cz or Heureka.sk price comparison website (hereinafter the “Portal” or “Website”), the Heureka Group a.s. Company, ID No. 07822774, with registered office at Karolinská 706/3, 186 00 Prague 8 (hereinafter the “Operator”),
1.1.2. a business entity (natural or legal person), which utilises the Portal to offer its merchandise or services (hereinafter the “Retailer”)
1.2. The Advocatius, s.r.o. Company, ID No. 25839578, with registered office in Ostrava - Mariánské Hory, Sokola Tůmy 743/16, postcode 709 00, assures the service of mediation for the purpose of resolving disputes between the Operator and the Retailer, during which time it accepts requests by the Parties to execute mediation and all correspondence related to mediation of a specific dispute, determines a specific mediator for the specific dispute and provides mediators with technical and organisational services. Unless specified otherwise by the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company, mediation within the meaning of these Rules is carried out by the following mediators:
1.2.1. Mgr. Lukáš Mokrý
1.2.2. Mgr. et Mgr. Petr Mališ
1.3. The subject of mediation within the meaning of these Rules may be any dispute between the Operator and the Retailer, which concerns use of the Portal, particularly disputes regarding the functionality of the website, the XML FEED and the potential inability to use any function, disputes regarding the Operator’s claim to monetary performance, disputes regarding the content located on the Website (particularly user reviews or individual offers of merchandise) or disputes arising from use of specific user products offered within the terms of the Website. The dispute may, but does not have to be preceded by an attempt to resolve the Retailer’s complaint by means of the Operator’s internal complaints management system.
1.4. The Advocatius, s.r.o. Company is liable for the fact that the appointed mediator meets the following conditions:
1.4.1. impartiality and independence in regard to either party to the dispute;
1.4.2. affordability for all commercial users of the Portal;
1.4.3. the ability to provide services in the language in which the terms regulating the relationship between the Operator and the Retailer are executed;
1.4.4. ease of access by means of remote communication;
1.4.5. the ability to provide services immediately;
1.4.6. sufficient expertise and experience in the field of relations within the terms of e-commerce;
2. Initiation of Mediation
2.1. Either the Operator or the Retailer may contact the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company with a request for mediation during any phase of the dispute, which meets conditions according to Article 1.3., by means of an e-mail sent to [email protected]. The e-mail containing the request must include a description of the circumstances of the dispute, its origin and a brief description of the proposed solution; the Operator’s request must also contain the Retailer’s identification and contact data.
2.2. The Advocatius, s.r.o. Company confirms acceptance of the request to the specific party; in the event that this does not contain complete and sufficient information for the purpose of the subsequent procedure, it requests additional information within a time limit that must not be less than 3 business days. On the basis of the received information the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company assesses fulfilment of the following conditions:
2.2.1. the described dispute meets conditions according to Article 1.3, particularly that it concerns the rights and duties of the Operator or the Retailer arising from use of the Portal;
2.2.2. the circumstances do not indicate that a crime has been committed within the terms of the described actions;
2.2.3. no circumstances are known indicating the bias or insufficient impartiality on the part of the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company or any of its mediators.
2.3. Following positive assessment that all the conditions of the preceding paragraph have been met, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company informs the other party to the dispute, as indicated in the request for mediation, of the accepted request, the basis of the dispute and the other party’s proposal for resolution within the terms of mediation, and asks it to issue a statement whether it agrees to resolution of the dispute by mediation, and, if it does agree, to issue a statement regarding the essence of the dispute. If a Retailer is the other party, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company also sends a link to these Rules. The time limit for issuing a statement in response to the request according to this Article must not be less than 15 days. If the other party does not respond within the specified time limit, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company sends a repeat request with an additional time limit of 5 business days.
2.4. If the other party rails to issue a statement in response to the request according to the preceding paragraph or fails to inform that it is not interested in mediation, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company informs the requesting party of this and halts any further procedure.
2.5. If the other party issues a statement in response to the request according to Article 2.3.and explicitly or implicitly informs or indicates that it agrees to mediation, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company initiates the mediation procedure, consisting of individual phases according to the article below.
3. Individual steps within the terms of mediation
3.1. Selection of a mediator
3.1.1. On the basis of the above-mentioned procedure, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company appoints a specific mediator and informs the parties to the dispute of this choice, with the request that they submit any comments regarding the person of the mediator within a time limit of 3 business days. Comments regarding the person of the mediator may solely be in regard to his bias, during which time the parties to the dispute must give specific reasons for the mediator’s bias within the specified time limit. If the parties to the dispute give reasons for bias sufficiently specifically and the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company judges these legitimate, it appoints a different mediator and repeats the request according to this paragraph.
3.2. Conclusion of a Mediation Agreement
3.2.1. On the basis of appointment of a mediator according to the preceding paragraph, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company sends the parties a tri-party Mediation Agreement, in which the at least following conditions are arranged:
- subject of mediation
- value of the remuneration for the mediator (as a unit price in the form of an hourly rate as standard) and its payment deadline
- arrangements regarding the mediator’s right to decide on the individual parties’ share in the payment of the mediator’s remuneration during the mediation procedure
- potential deposit for the costs of mediation
- the maximum duration of the mediation
- agreement with these Rules
(hereinafter the “Agreement”).
3.2.2. The Agreement is sent to the parties in the form of a separate document for each party, by signature of which the party expresses its agreement with the wording of the proposed Agreement.
3.2.3. The Agreement is concluded at the moment the physical copies of the agreements with the wording of the Agreement, signed by the authorised representatives of the Retailer and the Operator, possibly the electronic version signed using an acknowledged electronic signature, are delivered to the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company.
3.3.1. Mediation takes place as standard without a personal meeting, in the form of a meeting using remote communication means. Depending on the circumstances of the case and the standpoints of the parties, the mediator is entitled to choose the method of written communication, or the method of a teleconference using teleconference means available to all the parties (applications such as Skype, Teams, FaceTime, etc.).
3.3.2. Within the terms of mediation, the mediator first of all summarises the facts that have been established on the basis of information from the parties, requests a response from the parties and subsequently informs them of his opinion of the matter and indicates the possibilities for an amicable resolution. The subsequent procedure, including the number and frequency of meetings, is determined by the mediator in relation to the standpoints of both parties to the dispute, always within the terms of the maximum duration of the mediation as arranged in the Agreement.
3.3.3. Either of the parties may terminate mediation at any time during the procedure by sending notification of termination to the mediator and the other party to the dispute. The mediator’s entitlement to remuneration for the mediation procedure as of this date is not affected by this termination.
3.3.4. The mediator is entitled to terminate mediation at any time, by sending notification to both parties to the dispute, particularly in the following cases:
- the mediator doubts the will of the parties to conclude an agreement on amicable settlement or submit to a potential agreement on amicable settlement on the basis of the parties’ procedure (doubt regarding the sufficient good faith of the parties to the dispute);
- the mediator has legitimate concerns that the parties to the dispute will pay the costs for mediation and submit to a decision by the mediator regarding their share in the costs of the mediation;
- the mediator finds that either of the parties to the dispute has also initiated a judicial proceeding on the same matter;
- circumstances establishing the mediator’s bias have occurred.
3.4. Agreement on Amicable Settlement
3.4.1. In the event that, within the terms of the aforementioned procedure, the parties to the dispute reach an agreement on amicable settlement, the mediator recaps the terms of such amicable resolution and subsequently, after the parties explicitly agree to these terms, the mediator proposes the wording of the Agreement on Amicable Settlement, which he sends to both parties. If the parties submit any comments regarding the proposed agreement, the mediator amends the agreement according to these comments, if the other party expresses its consent to this. The mediator is not party to the Agreement on Amicable Settlement and is not responsible for whether the parties conclude the proposed agreement or not.
3.4.2. If the parties conclude an Agreement on Amicable Settlement, they send the mediator an electronic copy of the agreement.
3.4.3. If the parties do not submit any comments to the proposed agreement or send a copy of the concluded agreement to the mediator within 15 days after the last version is sent to them by the mediator, the mediator terminates mediation regardless of whether an agreement was concluded or not.
3.4.4. On the basis of fulfilment of terms according to Article 3.4.2. or3.4.3., the mediator will send the parties to the dispute information regarding termination of mediation, along with information about the parties’ share in the costs for mediation and a bill for the costs for mediation according to the following article.
3.5. Accounts for the costs for mediation
3.5.1. The mediator will send both the parties accounts for the costs for mediation on the basis of termination of mediation by any method according to Article 3.3.3. or3.4. The costs for mediation consist of the mediator’s remuneration and compensation of the mediator’s cash expenses. The mediator’s remuneration is arranged within the terms of the Agreement. If either party to the dispute has any objections regarding the accounts, it is required to inform the mediator within 3 business days after their receipt.
3.5.2. In compliance with Article 12(4) of the Regulation, the mediator is entitled to decide what share the parties to the dispute bear in relation to the total costs for mediation, taking into consideration all relevant aspects of the specific case, particularly the degree of justification for the claims by the parties to the dispute, the behaviour of the parties and the mutual proportion of the size and financial power of the parties. The greatest share in the costs for mediation that a party to the dispute may be allocated is 85% of the total costs, the lowest share is 15%. The mediator informs the parties of his decision regarding the share in the costs for mediation together with submission of the accounts of the costs for mediation.
3.5.3. If neither party submits any objections against the accounts of the costs for mediation, or if the mediator considers these objections groundless, the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company issues a tax document to each party for each party\s share in the costs for mediation and sends these to the parties to the dispute. The tax document shall be due payable within 15 days at the earliest.
4. General Provisions
4.1. Mediation according to these Rules is not mediation within the meaning of Act No. 202/2012 Sb., on mediation and on amendments to some acts, and the concluded agreement is not enforceable on legal grounds, unless it is concluded in the form of a notarial deed. The terms of mediation and the requirements placed on the mediator are governed by Article 12 of the Regulation, these Rules and the Agreement.
4.2. Initiation of mediation according to this Rules does not affect the right of the parties to independently initiate a judicial proceeding regarding the same subject of the dispute or a proceeding before a mediator within the meaning of Act No. 202/2012 Sb., on mediation and on amendments to some acts. Termination of mediation by any method does not establish an obstacle to adjudicated cases; the rights of the parties to the dispute to relinquish rights arising from the specific dispute within the terms of the Agreement on Amicable Settlement is hereby unaffected.
4.3. All communication between the parties and the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company or the mediator takes place in electronic form, by means of the e-mail address of the Advocatius, s.r.o. Company, or potentially by means of the communication platform chosen by the parties for teleconference proceedings. The Advocatius, s.r.o. Company accepts all documentation in physical form to the address of its registered office.
4.4. These Rules are binding for the parties to the dispute from the moment they conclude the Agreement. The procedure before conclusion of the Agreement is described in these Rules for the purpose of assuring the parties’ legal certainty. In the event of amendment of these Rules, no such amendment applies to mediation proceeding according to Agreements concluded before these amendments come into force - the version of the Rules in effect at the time the Agreement was concluded, applies to this mediation.
4.5. This version of the Rules comes into force on 20. 9. 2021