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“Don’t pay without receipt” triggers confusion among consumers as ESEE threatens with “theft” charges

The usual confusion as … usual! While the Finance Ministry allows consumers to go without paying if the merchant does not issue a receipt, the Trade Association threatens to raise charges on ‘theft’ for those consumers who follow the ministry’s orders.

Greek finance ministry put into effect on 12. January 2013 a provision that allows consumers to go without paying in a restaurant, for example, if the manager does not issue a receipt. Furthermore the ministry obliges shop owners to display in visible positions in their signs both in Greek and English that indicate “The consumer has no obligation to pay, if no receipt is being issued”. 

The measure affects primarily restaurants, cafeterias, shops but also electricians, plumbers and vehicle repair facilities and aims to combat tax evasion.

At the same time the Greek Trade Association urges shop owners to display sign warning consumers that if they go without paying they may face theft charges.

Nevertheless, according to media reports, quite some shop, restaurant and cafeterias owners declared they knew nothing about their obligation to display the signs that consumers may leave without paying.

Control units during the last two days fined some owners with 1,000 euro each.

PS What I love in this country is that measures go into force and affect some but not all. Why shouldn’t I live a doctor’s practice without payment if the good man refuses to give me a receipt?

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6 comments

  1. Actually this law applies to ALL businesses, including freelance businesses. So if a doctor does not issue a receipt you can leave without paying. I suggest you ask for the receipt first and then pay.

    • LOL! That could bring a nice stand-off! As the receipt is proof you paid for the product or service you could leave the store without paying and the owner would not be able to accuse you of theft. When on the other hand you hand over your money and the store owner refuses to give you a receipt you do not have proof you paid the bill and YOU can land in jail for theft…
      This whole thing is one of the last nails in the coffin for Greece as a society and country. The lasts shreds of trust are being eroded and killed off by these crazy schemes those state guys/girls are coming up with…

  2. What receipt is legal as some are just receipts anyone can buy at bookstore

    • keeptalkinggreece

      legal are the receipts ‘authorized’ by the tax office, that is with a perforated number on them (for receipt blocks) or issued by a cash register machine.

  3. Why do I have the feeling this will go the same route as the smoking ban?