Under Article 36 of the Polish Constitution, Polish citizens have the right to protection by the Polish State during a stay abroad. This covers both diplomatic and consular protection.
At the beginning of the article, the author provides some general remarks concerning the basic terms of tourism law. The article goes on to describe the legal situation of a consumer in the event of the insolvency of a tourism organizer in the light of Directive 90/314/EEC. The author points out that one of the instruments providing consumer protection is the obligation of the organizer to establish an appropriate financial security to cover potential insolvency (Article 7 of Directive 90/314/EEC). The jurisprudence of the
Court of Justice of the European Union is also analyzed in the context of the interpretation of Article 7.
The author also points out some problems related to the implementation of Article 7 of Directive 90/314/EEC into Polish law. The possibility is highlighted that Polish regulations may not be fully in compliance with the standards provided by EU law.
The main part of the article describes the financial assistance provided by a consul, which is an instrument for protecting consumer right. The Act of 3 February 1984 on Consuls’ Functions points out that a consul can provide financial aid to Polish citizens who are temporarily abroad to cover the costs of repatriation.
The author emphasizes that the consul's financial assistance can be provided only if there is a vital need. Conditions justifying this assistance are stipulated in the Regulation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs on providing financial assistance by a consul and the procedure for doing so. Basically, assistance cannot be provided if there are other possible solutions to provide finance to the Polish citizen (i.e. a credit card, a money transfer directly from Poland). The provided aid has to be returned.