Lithuania - The State Consumer Rights Protection Authority of the Republic of Lithuania takes action against financial services providers.
In 2009 the State Consumer Rights Protection Authority conducted an investigation regarding activities of one of the biggest Lithuanian bank potentially breaching the Law on Prohibition of Unfair Business-to-Consumer Commercial Practices. It was established that the bank had incresed the interest rate of credit cards (from 14,95% to 19,95%), and they have informed consumers of the planned increase of the borrowing rate only on their website. There was no indication of the terms and conditions of the modification of annual percentage rate (APR) established in the Credit Card Agreement, therefore under the National Law the bank had not a right to change APR (including the interest rate) unilaterally, and such activity was qualified as unfair business practice. Besides, consumers were not duly informed of the planned increase of the borrowing rate, and they did not have a possibility to express their agreement/disagreement regarding modification and to terminate the Credit agreement without any additional restrictions. Considering this aspect the bank activity was also qualified as matching criteria of aggressive commercial practice.
Taking into account the fact that the bank has breached the Law on Prohibition of Unfair Business-to-Consumer Commercial Practices for the first time and was willing to cooperate with the Authority and settled the dispute with consumers amicably, the bank was imposed a fine of LTL 20,000 (EUR 5792,00).