As of 17 September 2020, the government has cancelled all pre-scheduled inspections of legal entities for consumers rights violations.
Surprise inspections could increase
However, unscheduled inspections will continue to be conducted and their number is expected to increase, with special rules applying for 2020.
According to the statistics of the Federal Service for the Oversight of Consumer Protection and Welfare (Rospotrebnadzor), more than 85,000 unscheduled inspections were conducted in 2019, each of them uncovering at least two violations of consumers rights. In the majority of cases, the unscheduled inspections were prompted by consumers whose requests had been rejected or left unanswered, who had made test purchases and subsequently filed complaints with the supervisory authority about violations.
We expect that the number of surprise inspections could increase, due to heightened activity among consumers and an increase in test purchases. Therefore, we recommend checking your internal systems for handling consumer complaints and meeting the deadlines for responding to them, in order to minimize the risk of creating grounds for a surprise inspection.