Legal aid for students

(Potzdam) – Free advice for students in Eberswalde, Frankfurt (Oder) and Potsdam / insurance, mobile phone, internet and energy contracts, exchange of goods, license fee.
The current price increases for energy, housing and food particularly affect students. Their financial resources are often limited. At the same time, for the first time, they have to take care of themselves and make their own decisions – be it in connection with choosing the necessary insurance, concluding contracts or buying (online) goods. Sylvia Schönke, consultant at the Brandenburg Consumer Center (VZB), provides important tips. Students can get free and individual counseling from VZB.

What kind of insurance do students really need?

Sylvia Schönke: “Only a few types of insurance are really important for students. In addition to health insurance, private liability insurance is necessary. Students should first clarify whether they are also insured with their parents and whether the insurance amount is sufficiently high. Students should also take out disability insurance checks. the premiums are cheaper the earlier you get the insurance.

It can usually only pay off to take out contents insurance if your contents are expensive. In addition, students should find out in advance whether the contents of the dormitory or the student room are insured under the parents’ contract in a specific case. “

What should students consider when it comes to cell phone, internet and energy contracts?

Schönke: “When they move into their own apartment or shared apartment, many students have to sign a contract for internet or electricity for the first time. In particular, ISPs advertise with special offers for students. We recommend that you think carefully about what services you need. before signing a contract Telecommunications providers should also provide their customers with a product information sheet.This makes it easier to compare different contracts.Because the information sheet provides information on the term and extension of the contract, the notice period, data transfer rates and any restrictions on the monthly quantity before concluding the contract, to check the term of the Internet or mobile phone contract.

In addition, the Fair Contracts Act has been in force since March 1, 2022. After the first contract period has expired, consumers can use it to terminate their contract on a monthly basis, for example for regular deliveries of goods and services such as streaming services, fitness center or magazine subscriptions. But be careful! This only applies to new contracts. Contracts entered into before 1 March 2022 often have longer notice periods. The new rules for telecommunications contracts, such as mobile phone or Internet agreements, are more favorable: Since 1 December 2021, consumers have been able to terminate monthly after the minimum contract period has expired, regardless of when the contract was entered into.

Students are also hard hit by the current energy price increases, especially if they live in an apartment part and have to take care of the electricity or gas supplier themselves. In addition to trying to save electricity and heat energy yourself or to identify power guzzlers in the apartment, it may be advisable to change provider to save money. “

What rights do young people have when shopping in stores and online?

Schönke: “In general, the following applies to everyone: Anyone who buys goods on the Internet can usually cancel the contract within 14 days and send the item back. You do not have that when you buy in a store. But many retailers are accommodating and still give Exchange or return policy. It is best to clarify before you buy in the store whether and how exchange or return is possible. “

How does the free, multilingual advice from the Brandenburg Consumer Advice Center work?

Schönke: “Students receive individual advice from VZB on issues of general consumer law, ie on contracts, invoices and complaints as well as insurance and financial services to make an agreement in German, Polish and English.

The advice at VZB is in German. Activation of an interpreting service is possible by prior arrangement. Students make an appointment online or by phone on 0331/98 22 999 5 (Monday to Friday from 9.00 to 18.00). For students from the University and the University of Applied Sciences in Potsdam, Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder) and the University for Sustainable Development in Eberswalde, the consultation is free due to a collaboration with AStA. To take advantage of the free tutoring, students need to add information about their enrollment online. “

Source and contact address:
Consumer Center Brandenburg eV Lisa Högden, spokeswoman Babelsberger Str. 12, 14473 Potsdam Phone: 0331 29871-0, Fax: 0331 2987177

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