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Italy’s Antitrust Authority Imposes Heavy Fines on Car Rental Giants

 |  May 9, 2024

Italy’s Antitrust Authority dealt a significant blow to major car rental companies on Thursday, imposing fines totaling over 18 million euros for contractual clauses that encroach upon consumer rights. Avis Budget Italia, Hertz Italiana, Centauro Rent a Car Italy, Green Motion Italia, Noleggiare, and Drivalia Leasys Rent are the six companies facing penalties for their practices.

The authority’s investigation revealed that these companies were enforcing clauses in their contracts that subjected customers to “unjustified” fees. These fees were related to handling fines and the non-payment of tolls or parking fees. Such practices were deemed to unfairly burden consumers and infringe upon their rights.

In response to these findings, Italy’s Antitrust Authority has mandated the removal of these clauses from the car rental companies’ contract forms. The decision was made on the grounds that these clauses create a significant imbalance in the rights and obligations between the rental companies and consumers.

This move highlights the commitment of Italy’s regulatory bodies to safeguard consumer rights and ensure fair business practices within the car rental industry. The fines levied serve as a stern warning to companies engaging in practices that exploit consumers and violate established regulations.

The affected companies are expected to comply with the authority’s orders promptly. Failure to do so may result in further legal action or increased penalties.

Source: Ansa Latina