Ministry Aiming to Eliminate Invoice Surcharges ({{commentsTotal}})

Urve Palo
Urve Palo Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

The Ministry of Economic Affairs has drawn up a draft bill which would ban companies for charging for bills.

According to the bill, which has been sent to experts and other ministries for comments, clients will not have to pay to receive a bill for a service, including by snail mail.

Minister Urve Palo said some people are currently not able to receive a bill free for some services, as with some services clients do not have to pay for a bill only when they find it in an electronic environment.

Mobile phone service provider Elisa broke the norm of costless e-bills at the beginning of the year, saying it will charge 60 cents for each bill sent via email and customers not wanting to pay that would have to log on to Elisa's website.

“On one side it is understandable that businesses want to cut costs by not sending bills on paper via the post, but that should not increase costs to those clients who do not have access of experience of using computers,” Palo said, adding that 20 percent of the nation does not use Internet at all.

The bill also seeks to adopt a EU directive on consumer protections, which would make it easier to settle disputes over merchandise out of court.