Office address:

Hellenic DSA Office

280 Kifisias Av.
15232 Chalandri

T. +30 210 6967000

Adopted in 1995,
Amended in June 1999, November 2000 and May 2004
National direct selling associations (DSAs) may use and publish the European direct selling code of conduct towards consumers and the European direct selling code of conduct towards direct sellers, between direct sellers and between companies separately and in a different manner of distribution if required. DSAs may also combine the two codes and use and publish them as a single entity.
1.1 Scope
The European Direct Selling Code of Conduct towards Consumers (here in after referred to as the “Code”) is published by the Federation of European Direct Selling Associations (Seldia) for its member DSAs . The Code concerns the relations between direct selling companies and direct sellers on the one hand and consumers on the other hand. The Code is aimed at achieving the satisfaction and protection of consumers, the promotion of fair competition in the framework of free enterprise, and the enhancement of the public image of direct selling, which is to sell quality products on fair terms and conditions to consumers.

1.2 Glossary of Terms
For the purposes of this Code:
1 ‘direct selling' means any selling method which is based on the explanation or demonstration of products to a consumer by a salesperson, hereinafter called ‘direct seller', away from business premises, typically in the consumer's home, in that of another consumer or at the consumer's place of work;
2 ‘consumer' means any natural person who buys products for purposes which can be regarded as outside his trade, business or profession;
3 ‘‘direct selling association (DSA)' means any national association of direct selling companies which represents the direct selling industry in a European country and which is a member of Seldia;
4 ‘direct selling company' or ‘company' means any business entity which markets products associated with its trademark or service mark or identifying symbol through a distribution system based on direct selling and which is a member of a DSA;
5 ‘distribution system' means any organization and methods designed for the marketing of products;
6 ‘direct seller' means any natural or legal person who is member of the distribution system of a direct selling company and who sells, facilitates or assists in the sale of products of that company away from business premises, typically in the consumer's home, in that of another consumer or at the consumer's place of work;
7 ‘product' means any good, tangible or intangible, or service;
8 ‘party selling' means direct selling to a group of consumers invited by a host to that end;
9 ‘order form' means any document used to order products;
10 ‘‘recruiting' means any activity conducted for the purpose of offering a person the opportunity to become a direct seller;
11 ‘code administrator' means an independent person or body appointed by a DSA to monitor member companies' observance of the DSA's code and to resolve complaints under the code.

1.3 Associations
Every DSA pledges to adopt a code of conduct that incorporates the substance of the provisions of the Code, as a condition of its admission and continuing membership in Seldia.

1.4 Companies
Every DSA member company pledges to abide by the Code as a condition of admission and continuing membership in the DSA. Every DSA Member Company shall be required to promote to the public its DSA affiliation and the national Codes.

1.5 Direct Sellers
Direct sellers are not bound directly by the Code, but shall be required by their companies to adhere to it or to rules of conduct meeting its standard as a condition of membership in the companies' distribution systems.

1.6 Self-Regulation
The Code is a measure of self-regulation by the direct selling industry. It is not a law, and its obligations may require a level of ethical behavior which exceeds existing legal requirements. Non-observance does not create any civil law responsibility. With termination of its membership in a DSA, a company is no longer bound by the Code, the provisions of which remain applicable to events or transactions occurring during the time a company was a member of the DSA.

1.7 Law
Companies and direct sellers are presumed to comply with the requirements of law and therefore the Code does not restate all legal obligations.

1.8 Standards
The Code contains standards of ethical behavior for direct selling companies and direct sellers. DSAs may vary these standards provided that the substance of the Code is preserved or as is required by national law.
It is recommended that the Code be used as evidence of industry standards.

1.9 Extraterritorial Effect
Every DSA pledges that it will require each member as a condition to admission and continuing membership in the DSA to comply with the WFDSA World Codes of Conduct for Direct Selling with regard to direct selling activities outside of its home country, unless those activities are under the jurisprudence of codes of conduct of another country's DSA to which the member also belongs.

2.1 Prohibited Practices
Direct sellers shall not use misleading, deceptive or unfair sales practices.

2.2 Identification and Demonstration
From the beginning of the contact with a consumer, direct sellers shall identify themselves and their company and explain the purpose of their solicitation. In party selling, direct sellers shall make clear the purpose of the occasion to the host and the participants.
Prior to the conclusion of the sale, direct sellers shall provide an explanation and/or a demonstration of the product, as well as the following information:
a) the identity of the company and its address;
b) the main characteristics of the products being offered;
c) the price of the products including all taxes;
d) delivery costs, where appropriate;
e) the terms of payment, credit arrangements, delivery or performance;
f) the existence of a right of withdrawal or cancellation;
g) the terms of any guarantee;
h) details and limitation of after-sales service.
The information given to the consumer shall be provided in a clear and comprehensible manner with due regard to the principles of good faith in commercial transactions and the principles governing the protection of those who are unable, pursuant to national legislation, to give their consent, such as minors.

2.3 Answers to Questions
Direct sellers shall give accurate and understandable answers to all questions from consumers concerning the product and the offer.

2.4 Order Form
An order form shall be delivered to the consumer at the time of sale, which shall identify the company and the direct seller and provide the following information: the company and direct seller identities, the full contact details of the company (and of the direct seller, where applicable), and all material terms of sale (corresponding to 2.2). All terms shall be clearly legible.

2.5 Verbal Promises
Direct sellers shall only make verbal promises concerning the product which are authorized by the company.

2.6 Cooling-off and Return of Goods
Companies and direct sellers shall make sure that any order form contains, whether it is a legal requirement or not, a cooling-off clause permitting the customer to withdraw from the order within at least seven calendar days, and to obtain reimbursement of any payment or goods traded in. Companies and direct sellers offering an unconditional right of return shall provide it in writing.

2.7 Guarantee and After-Sales Service
Terms of a guarantee or a warranty, details and limitation of after-sales service, the name and address of the guarantor, the duration of the guarantee and the remedial action open to the purchaser shall be clearly set out in the order form or other accompanying literature or provided with the product.

2.8 Literature
Promotional literature or mailings shall not contain any product description, claims or illustrations which are deceptive or misleading, and shall contain the name and address or telephone number of the company.

2.9 Testimonials
Companies and direct sellers shall not refer to any testimonial or endorsement which is not authorized, not true, obsolete or otherwise no longer applicable, not related to their offer or used in any way likely to mislead the consumer.

2.10 Comparison and Denigration
Companies and direct sellers shall refrain from using comparisons which are likely to mislead or which are incompatible with principles of fair competition. Points of comparison shall not be unfairly selected and shall be based on facts which can be substantiated. Companies and direct sellers shall not unfairly denigrate any firm or product directly or by implication. Companies and direct sellers shall not take unfair advantage of the goodwill attached to the trade name and symbol of another firm or product.

2.11 Respect of Privacy
Personal, telephone or electronic contact shall be made in a reasonable manner and during reasonable hours to avoid intrusiveness. A direct seller shall discontinue a demonstration or sales presentation upon the request of the consumer.

2.12 Fairness
Direct sellers shall not abuse the trust of individual consumers, shall respect the lack of commercial experience of consumers and shall not exploit a consumer's age, illness, lack of understanding or lack of language knowledge.

2.13 Referral Selling
Companies and direct sellers shall not induce a consumer to purchase products based upon the representation that a consumer can reduce or recover the purchase price by referring other consumers to the sellers for similar purchases, if such reductions or recovery are contingent upon some unsure future event.

2.14 Performance
Any order shall be executed as quickly as possible and in any case within 30 days from the day following that on which the consumer signs the order, unless the parties have agreed otherwise.
Consumers shall be informed if companies or direct sellers are unable to perform their side of the contract on the grounds that the products ordered are unavailable. In that case, the consumer may either:
  • obtain a refund of any sums they have paid as soon as possible and in any case within 30 days, or
  • receive from the company or direct seller products of equivalent quality and price, where this possibility was provided for prior to the conclusion of the contract or in the contract.

3.1 Companies’ Responsibility
The primary responsibility for the observance of the Code shall rest with each company. In case of any breach of the Code, companies shall make every reasonable effort o satisfy the complainant.

3.2 DSA’s Responsibility
DSAs shall provide a person responsible for complaint handling. DSAs shall make every reasonable effort to ensure that complaints are settled.

3.3 Code Administrator
Each DSA shall appoint an independent person or body as Code Administrator. The Code Administrator shall monitor companies' observance of the Code by appropriate actions. The Code Administrator shall settle any unresolved complaint of consumers based on breaches of the Code and shall furnish an annual report on the operation of the Code.

3.4 Actions
Actions to be decided on by companies, DSAs or Code Administrators may include cancellation of orders, return of goods purchased, refund of payment or other appropriate actions, including warnings to direct sellers, cancellation or termination of direct sellers' contracts or other relationships with the company, warnings to companies, exclusion of companies from DSA membership, and the publication of such actions and sanctions.

3.5 Complaint Handling
Companies, DSAs and Code Administrators shall establish complaint-handling procedures and ensure that receipt of any complaint is confirmed within a short time and decisions are made within a reasonable time. Handling of consumer complaints shall be free of charge to the consumer.

3.6 Publication
DSAs shall publish the Code and make it known as widely as possible. Printed copies shall be made available free of charge to the public.