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Revista Juridica Portucalense ; 32:86-109, 2022.
Article in Portuguese | Scopus | ID: covidwho-2206213


On 30 June 2021, the European Commission proposed a new Directive on consumer credit (COM (2021) 347 final) which aims to modernise and strengthen, at European level, the protection of consumers who take out credits and which, if approved, will repeal the current Directive 2008/48/EC. Digitalisation has made it possible to disseminate new ways of acquiring credit, through online platforms, and has changed the way in which banks assess a consumer's creditworthiness, using automated decision-making systems and obtaining non-traditional data, both for obtaining credit and for purchasing goods or using services. The revision of the Directive is also the result of new developments brought about by the COVID-19 crisis. This article has the main objective of analysing the proposed Directive in relation to consumer behaviour in the digitalisation of retail financial services for the purpose of obtaining credit to purchase goods and services on the market. It also aims to assess whether, and to what extent, the solutions contemplated in the Proposal solve the issues of financial information (generally not easily understandable and of high technical complexity that the consumer clearly does not decipher) and consumer over-indebtedness. The problem is all the more pertinent since it is certain that both can compromise the objectives outlined for the development and consolidation of the internal market, above all in cross-border transactions. We conclude that this proposal will strengthen the legal protection of consumers in particularly difficult times, but that their vulnerability remains. Consumers sometimes adopt irresponsible online behaviour and are increasingly dependent on detailed and explained information from lenders. Some measures already result from the law in force and are enshrined in the proposal, but as they are insufficient and ineffective, it is recommended that they be strengthened in the new directive. © 2022 Seventh Sense Research Group®.