Explainer: How to file complaint in consumer forum

By Sumit Jha  Published on  28 Aug 2020 5:16 AM GMT
Explainer: How to file complaint in consumer forum

Here is how you can file a complaint in the district and state consumer forums/commission:

How to approach a district consumer forum/commission?

A complainant can write down his/her complaint in a plain paper and file it in person or through an authorised agent after it has been notarised through registered post or regular post. It is important that the complainant serve a personal or legal notice to the opposite party before filing the complaint.

The complainant will have to file four copies of the complaint, plus additional copies for each opposite party. The complaint must be filed within two years from the date the cause of action has arisen. The court fee for cases involving up to Rs. 5 lakh is nil for those holding Antyodaya Anna Yojana cards and Rs. 100 for others. For cases involving above Rs. 5 lakh and up to Rs. 10 lakh, the court fee is Rs. 200; For cases above Rs. 10 lakh and up to Rs. 20 lakh, the court fee is Rs. 400 and for cases above Rs. 20 lakh and up to Rs. 1 crore, the case fee very between Rs 400 to Rs. 2,000. The demand draft should be made out to the president, consumer disputes redressal commission, (name of) district.

How to approach the state consumer forum/commission?

Cases where the value of goods or services exceeds Rs. 1 crore can be filed and orders of the district forum challenged here within 45 days of the order being passed and also deposit 50% of the amount awarded by District consumer commission. The court fee for cases above Rs. 1 crore is Rs. 4,000. The demand draft should be made in favour of the registrar, (name of) state commission, and be payable in that state only. To file an appeal you need the following:

(a) Documents of record with the correct name of all parties and their addresses;

(b) Certified copy of the district forum order;

(c) More than four additional copies for each respondent for filing an appeal;

(d) Any conditional delay, interim orders and other petitions to be submitted along with an affidavit; and

(e) A statutory deposit of Rs. 25,000 or 50 per cent of the award/compensation amount, whichever is less, is to be made by the appellant /opposite parties.

How to approach the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission?

A dissatisfied consumer can file a complaint directly with the national commission or appeal against the decisions of the state commission within a month from the date of the order. The court fee is Rs. 5,000 and the demand draft should be in the name of the registrar, National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission. There is no fee for filing an appeal before the state or national commission. You can appeal against the orders of the national commission in the Supreme Court within a period of 30 days.

Telangana has consumer courts and consumer commission in Adilabad, Hyderabad, Karimnagar, Khammam, Mahabubnagar, Medak at Sangareddy, Nalgonda, Nizamabad, Rangareddy, and Warangal. Hyderabad has three district commission.

According to The Consumer Protection Act, 2019, the district consumer forums will be called district consumer commission and state consumer forum will be called state consumer forum

(Inputs from Gopi Kishore, Vice President, Bar Association of Telangana State Commission)

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