ECJ Advocate General: distance contract not preconditional for consumer forum

With regard to a reference for preliminary ruling filed by the Austrian Civil Supreme Court, ECJ Advocate General Cruz Villalón in his opinion delivered on May 24, 2012 suggested that Article 15 of the Brussels I Regulation should not be interpreted as requiring a distance contract between the consumer and the entrepreneur. The reference had been filde because in its decision in cases C‑585/08 and C‑144/09, the ECJ had held that with regard to a hotel reservation the fact that the key had been handed over to the consumer in the memberstate where the trade was domiciled and the payment had been effected there would not exclude the the forum at the consumer’s residence pursuant to Article 15 of the Brussels I Regulation “if the booking and its confirmation had been done by the means of a distance contract”. It was therefore unclear whether the said consumer forum also applied to contracts not concluded on distance.Opinion of the Advocate General in case C-190/11 – Mühlleitner/Yusufi available here>>.

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