As the conciliation body, we can help you when facing issues related to phone, internet or radio and television service providers (e.g. cable network operators and pay-TV subscription providers). Examples of such issues include unclear items in a phone bill or when phone or internet services do not function properly. You can then request us to initiate a conciliation procedure to clarify the matter.
In the conciliation procedure, we attempt to identify a solution that is acceptable to both you and your provider or operator. If the attempt is not successful, we review the case and provide you with a written statement of our legal opinion. That may include a proposal for resolving the issue. We will also advise if, in our opinion, your complaint is not justified. In the following you will find a general overview of the conciliation procedure.
Procedure in German
We can only carry out the steps in the procedure (correspondence and phone conversations) in German. You should therefore obtain appropriate support if required. Our recommendation: ask someone you trust, who speaks German well, to help and represent you (a family member, for example).
Important conditions for a conciliation procedure
- Submit a written complaint to your provider or operator. If you have a complaint concerning a bill, we recommend that you file an objection within three months of receiving the bill. Important data could already be deleted if you file your objection later.
- Wait for your provider or operator to respond. If you do not agree with the response, you may request us to initiate a conciliation procedure. To do so, please use our procedure request form. We ask you to fully complete the form and provide a helpful solution to your issue.
- You have one year to apply for a conciliation procedure. This period begins when you send the complaint to the provider or operator.
- You can view the procedure guidelines (in German) at www.rtr.at/schlichtungsstelle. The procedure guidelines specify everything you need to consider. Please read through the guidelines carefully.
- Procedures are usually not an option in cases of disputes involving less than 20 euros.
- The conciliation procedure is free of charge. You are responsible only for your own expenses (e.g. photocopies, postage, phone calls or attorney fees).
How we carry out the procedure on your behalf
- The first step is to try and find a solution that is agreeable to both you and the provider.
- If no agreement is reached, we review all of the documents received. Technical issues are verified by our technical staff. We advise you of the outcome of the review. There are two possible outcomes to the procedure:
- Solution proposal:
We propose a solution if your complaint is justified. A legally binding settlement is reached if you and your provider or operator agree to the proposal. The conciliation procedure is closed without a settlement if either you or your provider or operator do not accept the proposal. We can then unfortunately not help you any further.
We close the procedure if we do not consider your complaint to be justified. We provide you with the reasons in writing. A shortened form of the procedure is an option where the amount in dispute is between 20 and 150 euros.
- Solution proposal:
Payment deferral: the amount in dispute need not be paid
Payment deferral means you are not obliged to pay the disputed portion of the bill for the time being. The payment deferral only takes effect after we have sent you our written confirmation.
The following conditions have to be met in this case:
- You have already sent a written complaint to your provider or operator or have already received their response and have applied for conciliation.
- You must send us the fully completed form.
- You must send the complaint to the provider or operator within three months. The period begins from the date when you receive the bill.
- Filing a complaint about a bill with only your provider or operator does not entitle you to defer payment. The remaining undisputed portion of the bill must always be paid. You will also find additional information on payment deferral in the conciliation procedure guidelines.
Please note that payment deferrals confirmed by the conciliation body after 1 December 2018 expire – or cannot be confirmed – if you do not apply for a conciliation procudure within three months after receiving the operator's written reply to your complaint.
RTR is authorised to conduct conciliation procedures by Article 122 of the Austrian Telecommunications Act 2003 and the "Alternative-Streitbeilegung-Gesetz" (Alternative Dispute Resolution Act).
RTR is the state-recognised body for conciliation procedures between consumers and telecommunications providers.