Obligation to specify the energy efficiency class of LED monitors in advertising which includes prices
In accordance with a recent decision of the Cologne Higher Regional Court of 26.02.2014 (6 U 189/13), LED monitors which are capable of and intended for displaying standardised video signals and being used as computer displays fall under the scope of the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No. 1062/2010 with regard to the energy labelling of television sets.
- According to Article 2(1) of the Regulation specified above, “televisions” are both television sets and television monitors. The latter are defined more precisely in Article 2(3) of the Regulation. According to the opinion of the Cologne Higher Regional Court, computer monitors in the form of LED monitors with a HDMI port also fall under this definition. The court stated that only (computer) monitors which use non-standardised video signal paths such as DVI and SDI are specifically exempted from this and that the exemptions are to be interpreted narrowly. The court also held that a strict differentiation between television monitors and computer monitors contradicted the objective aim of the Regulation and the Directive 2010/30/EU on which it is based.
- This interpretation ultimately has the (far-reaching) consequence that corresponding LED monitors also have to meet the specific labelling requirements of Regulation (EU) No. 1062/2010. It must in particular be observed that in accordance with Article 4 c) of Regulation (EU) No. 1062/2010 and Sec. 6a of the German Energy Consumption Labelling Act (Energieverbrauchskennzeichnungsverordnung – EnVKV) (online) traders also have to ensure that any advertising which includes prices must specify the energy efficiency of the device. The term “advertising” is in this respect interpreted broadly, so that an online overview page with a list of new television sets and their corresponding prices is also categorised as advertising in the meaning of the above specified regulations (cf. in this respect, judgement of the OLG Cologne (Higher Regional Court) of 20.12.2013 – 6 U 56/13; LG Mainz (Regional Court), judgement of 30.04.2014 – 12 HK O 41/13).
Not meeting this obligation to specify energy efficiency can lead to regulatory sanctions and/or warnings provided for by competition law.