New technologies make it possible to trade online at all levels of consumption of goods and services. What about credit? I need a reserve of money, do I have to go to the lender’s offices or can I take out my credit remotely? Let us take stock of this very trendy contractual transaction.
Distance credit agreement = traditional credit agreement
The law shows a certain flexibility and assimilates the distance contract relating to a financial service (in this case the granting of credit) to a traditional credit contract. The answer is therefore yes, you can easily choose to conclude a credit agreement by telephone, internet or text. However, in such a case, the lender will have to drastically respect its duties of investigation, information and advice to consumers.
Consumer information and advice to conclude a credit agreement
First of all, the lender will be required to inform you in good time, that is to say before the conclusion of the credit agreement, on four fundamental elements: the identity of the service provider, the characteristics of the credit offered, the content of the distance contract, the possibilities of appeal in the event of a dispute.
This communication must be done by any means adapted to the remote communication technique used (for example an e-mail). However, if for technical reasons, it is impossible to communicate this information before the conclusion of the contract, the law authorizes its transmission to the consumer immediately after the conclusion of the credit contract.
There is also a simplified information regime when you conclude a credit agreement by means of a voice communication system (for example, the telephone). This regime will apply subject to a formal agreement on your part.
This information document is intended to allow you to more easily compare different credit offers and thus compete, but also to make an informed decision.
You can also demand to obtain the draft of your credit contract before signing the contract, which will be done electronically if necessary.
Right to retract
You have a period of at least 14 calendar days to withdraw from the distance contract relating to a financial service. This right is exercised without penalties and without giving any reason.
For the exercise of this right the deadline runs:
- either from the day the distance contract is concluded;
- either from the day on which the consumer receives the contractual conditions and the information mentioned above, if this last date is later than that of the conclusion of the contract.
The deadline is deemed to be respected if the notification, provided that it has been made in writing or on a durable medium that is at your disposal and to which you have access, has been sent before the expiration of the deadline of the 14-day deadline.
During the withdrawal period, the execution of the contract can only start after your express agreement.
Burden of proof
It is the responsibility of the lender to provide proof that it has satisfied the obligations relating to consumer information, compliance with deadlines, consumer consent to the conclusion of the contract and, where applicable, to its execution during the withdrawal period.