Consumer law: your rights and obligations as a seller

Published by:
Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK
Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK
Netherlands Enterprise Agency RVO
Netherlands Enterprise Agency RVO
Checked 18 Jan 2024
3 min read
Nederlandse versie

If you sell a product or service to a non-business customer, it falls under consumer law. Consumer law is about the rights and obligations of your customer. Such as the right to warranty, the cooling-off period for online sales, and sales outside the sales area (door-to-door and street sales). Read here which rules you must adhere to as a seller.

What is consumer law?

When a customer buys something from you, the transaction is an oral or written agreement between you and the buyer. This agreement describes rights and obligations. Your customer must pay the agreed price. You as a seller must deliver a reliable product. For example, the product must meet certain requirements. Consumer law is a collection of laws to protect consumers. Consumers also have obligations.


The product you sell must be reliable and of good quality. This is the legal guarantee to which your customer is entitled. For example, if the product is broken, you must replace or repair it. Besides the legal guarantee, you can also give or sell an extra guarantee. For example, a seller's guarantee or an extended warranty. With a digital product or service, you must also guarantee (security) updates.

Read more about giving a guarantee.

Providing a cooling-off period

Your customer is often entitled to a reflection or cooling-off period. This means the purchase can be reversed. This is called the right of withdrawal or dissolution. Your customer is not always entitled to the statutory cooling-off period. Exceptions are, for example, products that are custom-made or that can spoil.

Read when you must give a reflection period and which rules you must follow.

Determine payment term

You may determine within which period consumers must pay. You put this payment term in the contract or your general terms and conditions.

If your customer does not pay, you can send a payment reminder. You are not allowed to charge extra costs in the first payment reminder. After that, you can charge collection costs. These are the costs that you have to incur yourself to ensure that you still receive your money.

Read which costs you can charge on (in Dutch).

Selling outside of a store

Selling door-to-door (off-premises sales)

Do you sell outside an official retail space, for example on the street or door-to-door? Then you must follow the rules for doorstep selling (colportage). The buyer is entitled to a 14-day cooling-off period with a purchase over €50, and you and the buyer must both sign a deed of sale.

Read what rules apply to door-to-door and street selling.

Buying remotely

Do you sell online via a web shop or by telephone? Then you must follow the rules for long-distance sales. For example, in most cases, your customer is entitled to the statutory cooling-off period. You must provide clear information about that right, the price, and how you deliver the product, among other things.

Read more about the rules for online sales.

Selling subscriptions

You are not allowed to automatically renew a subscription, such as an energy or telephone subscription. Automatic or silent renewal means that the subscription continues without the subscriber's knowledge.

Read what rules apply to the sale of subscriptions.

Selling trips, vacations, or timeshares

You need to give your customers clear information about the product you are selling and what they are paying for. For example, give information about the number of people, what your customers will and will not get for the price they pay, and whether there are any additional costs.

Read which rules you have to take into account when you sell (package) trips.

Protecting personal data

Do you receive personal data from your customers, for example via your online shop? And do you store, use or share the data? You must protect this data. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) privacy law tells you what you can and cannot do.

Do you comply with the GDPR?

Read what falls under the General Data Protection Regulation. And how you comply with the rules.

Protecting personal data

Read what personal data is and what you can do with it.

Drafting a privacy statement

Read whether you need a privacy statement to comply with privacy legislation.

This webpage is part of an EU quality network

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Questions relating to this article?

Please contact the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK