MSE News

Competition watchdog to take further legal action against Viagogo

The competition watchdog has told secondary ticket site Viagogo that it will be asking a court to find it in contempt of court.

Update 5 Sept: The CMA has suspended preparations for court action as it said Viagogo has now addressed outstanding concerns about how it presents information to its customers.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) says that the secondary ticketing site still hasn't done enough to overhaul the way it presents information on its website to ensure it complies with UK consumer protection law, despite several warnings.

In March 2019, the CMA announced it was preparing to take legal action for contempt of court and Viagogo responded by committing to make further improvements to its website.

The CMA says that positive changes have been made since then, leading to important improvements to the information customers receive when considering whether to buy a ticket, and Viagogo has paid over £400,000 in refunds to people whose claims it had wrongly rejected. But the CMA believes these changes are not enough to fully comply with the court order.

In particular, it says the warning Viagogo gives to people – that tickets with resale restrictions may not get them in to an event – does not meet the requirements of the order.

The CMA also says Viagogo is still using some misleading ticket availability messages, some seat numbers are not being displayed on the website as required, and in some cases, incomplete addresses of businesses selling tickets are being displayed to consumers.

A Viagogo spokesperson said: "We were surprised at the announcement from the CMA today, which we learnt of through their press release, and we deny the allegations that we are in breach of compliance with their regulations.

"We have recently completed a third party review which has given us approval that we are reaching compliance with the requirements. It is important to note that no contempt of court has actually been filed against us at this time, and per the protocol of the order we have until 18 July to respond to the CMA's concerns.

"We will continue to work closely with the CMA, as we have been for the past year, to ensure we are offering the best possible consumer experience and protections in the UK."

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