The defendant is one of the main Polish banks, offering a number of financial services and products to consumers. The President of the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection initiated the proceedings as a result of a national monitoring action in relation to financial services and products. The proceedings related, among others, to the unfair advertisement procedures used by banks.
The object of the proceedings was, among other things, the advertising campaign "Huge loan, little installment" ("Max pożyczka, mini ratka") of the defendant, which appeared on multiple media platforms, including television, radio, press, billboards leaflets and Internet.
The campaign contained such statements as "PLN 24,50 monthly installment for each PLN 1000 of a loan" and "PLN 26 monthly installment for each PLN 1000 of a loan".
This created an impression that the conditions mentioned in the slogans applied to all consumers who wanted to apply for the loan.
In reality, the loan was not available to a wider group of consumers on the abovementioned conditions, but only to persons who were already customers of the defendant, having held an account with the defendant for at least 6 months at the time of the campaign, had regular deposits to their bank account and had not exceeded the allowed overdraft limit during that period. Consumers who did not fulfill those conditions could still obtain the loan in question, but the applicable rates were much less favorable.
Information regarding this specific conditions which enabled consumers to apply for the loan as indicated in the main text of the advertisement was presented in the advertisements, but was not clearly visible due to the small font size, short time of exposure, side position and short length.