Just when the year is about to end, Nintendo may not be having all of the goodness of the festive season just yet as the company is been charged for an unlawful refund policy
According to top a reliable source, the company has been found guilty of inappropriate and illegal pre-order processing under the European law. Apparently, Germany agrees with Norway’s claim- Nintendo’s no-refund pre-order policy isn’t only harsh, it’s also illegal under European law. From what we heard from a source, the gaming company is been charged to court by the German Consumer Protection Authority, over a policy that doesn’t allow pre-order cancellations, even if the game hasn’t been released yet and even if you still haven’t downloaded it. While majority might not be aware that law is against such action, the company seem to have been caught so unaware.
The Norwegian Consumer Council was the first to highlight the policy as early as 2the beginning of the 2018 calendar year. The complaint further reached Germany because that’s where Nintendo of Europe is based. The Council wrote an open letter to Nintendo, part of which reads:
“According to the right of withdrawal laid down in the Consumer Rights Directive, such terms are illegal. Until the game can be downloaded and launched, the seller cannot prohibit the consumer from cancelling their pre-order.”
As at then, the NCC examined seven digital gaming platforms, but only two of them have good enough refund rules and processes to earn the council’s approval. It’s going after Nintendo, though, because its rules are apparently the worst. Sony allows you to get a refund for pre-orders even after their release date, so long as you haven’t downloaded or streamed them yet. Microsoft will also refund you for pre-purchases before they’re released.
Out of the seven, only EA’s Origin and Steam’s Valve passed muster. Steam, after all, will give you a full refund even if you’ve already played the game for an hour or so. Meanwhile, Nintendo’s e-shop doesn’t even allow you to pre-order a title unless you waive your right to get your money back. You’d have to check a box that reads: “I consent that Nintendo begins with the performance of its obligations before the cancellation period ends. I acknowledge that I thereby lose my right to cancel.”
Nintendo defended its policy in an article, which lists all the exceptions from the right of withdrawal. The first entry in the list says consumers can’t withdraw from a deal “if the performance has begun with the consumer’s prior express consent, and with the acknowledgement that he will lose his right of withdrawal once the contract has been fully performed by the trader.” a Norwegian publication says, adding that the proceedings will begin within the next three to four weeks. How genuine this can be is yet to be determined, but it is certain that Nintendo will be battling this issue for a while.