How to protect the rights of companies subject to Rospotrebnadzor inspection?

By Oksana Oleksyuk, Head of Business Development

Rospotrebnadzor is a federal service set up to protect consumer rights. The imposition of fines or court appeal to order suspension of activities are the main sanctions available to this service when it identifies any violation of consumer rights.

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Oksana Oleksyuk
Head of Business Development
Although almost any companies regardless of their legal form may be subject to Rospotrebnadzor inspections, companies providing direct services to the general public (trade, consumer services, etc.) tend to be inspected more often. Inspections may be scheduled or unscheduled when initiated by customer complaints.

Rospotrebnadzor can inspect premises, verify whether employee medical records are available, documentation is duly drawn up (for example, employment record books, employment contracts, and reports from public health services) and much more.

It is necessary to review and sign the report issued by Rospotrebnadzor after each inspection, and if there is any complaint about how the inspection was conducted or its findings, it should be noted in the report. 

How to contest inspection findings?

It is possible to contest inspection findings either through administrative or court proceedings. This right is provided for inspected individuals and legal entities in paragraph 8(4) of the Administrative Rules for   Rospotrebnadzor inspections. 

Administrative proceedings

Inspection findings may be contested through administrative proceedings by submitting a written complaint to Rospotrebnadzor in the name of the company head or his/her deputy. Rospotrebnadzor must then consider such complaint within 7 working days of the date of receipt. After examination of the complaint, a reason decision is adopted and issued in writing.

The decision may:

  • Acknowledge the violation of the applicant’s rights;
  • Overturn the inspection results;
  • Reject the complaint. 

The procedure and time period for appealing against the decision must be specified in the text of the decision.

Applicants may appeal against Rospotrebnadzor decisions by sending a complaint to the Ministry of Health and Social Development of the Russian Federation. Such appeal may be filed within 1 month of the date of receipt of rejection notice or within a month of complaint filing if no written reply is received.

Court proceedings

If a complaint cannot be settled through administrative proceedings, then it should be referred to court.

Article 40(5.1) of Federal Law N 2300-1 On Protection of Consumer Rights dated February 07, 1992 sets a time limit to file an appeal application to a state commercial court. This indeed should be done within 3 months of issuance of Rospotrebnadzor decisions, and if the state commercial court agrees to hear the appeal, the execution of Rospotrebnadzor decisions and the deadlines set in such decisions to rectify violations are suspended until the state commercial court ruling enters into force.

Recommendation

  1. Reviewing the provisions of Federal Law N 294-FZ On Protection of Rights of Legal Entities and Individual Entrepreneurs Subject to State Control (Inspection) and Municipal Control;
  2. Observing the obligations of legal entities subject to inspections;

  3. Rectifying the violations identified during inspections;

  4. Indicating complaints (if any) in Rospotrebnadzor inspection reports.

How can we help?

  1. We provide support and advice on inspections and on how to contest inspection findings;
  2. We appeal against inspection findings through administrative and court proceedings;

  3. We draft complaints to Rospotrebnadzor;

  4. We draft appeal applications against Rospotrebnadzor decisions and file them with the relevant state commercial court.