The Brazilian government has said that promoters are ‘not obliged’ to give refunds if they are able to reschedule events or offer vouchers for use as credit on future shows.

The Brazilian association of event promoters (Associação Brasileira de promotores de eventos or Abrape) has welcomed these new measures which allow members to offer credit for events that are cancelled or postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic rather than refunds.

Other countries, including Germany, Austria and Poland have also introduced voucher schemes for events.

The conduct adjustment agreement was reached between the federal district attorney’s office, the national consumer secretariat of the Ministry of Justice (Senacon), the national association of consumer prosecutors (Mpcon) and Abrape. It states that promoters will not be obliged to refund the customer, as long as they offer credit or discount for other services, or guarantee a rescheduled date for the event.

A refund must be given to the customer within six months of the event being cancelled, if it is cancelled outright and the promoter is unable to offer credit. However, up to 20 per cent of the ticket price can be retained by the promoter to ‘reduce any unrecoverable expenses’.

In the case of postponed events, ticketholders may use the ticket for the rescheduled event, transfer the ticket to a third party, exchange it for another event using the same promoter (paying a price difference if the price of the new ticket is over 10 per cent higher than the original ticket price), or request credit to be used on another event offered by the same promoter within 12 months.

According to the agreement, all postponed events must happen within a year of the pandemic ending, and promoters must have a date for rescheduled events within six months of the pandemic’s end. All rescheduled events must have “the same main attraction” as the original event and, if this is not possible, their replacement must be “of the same musical style and status”.

Ticketholders can only request a refund for postponed shows in the event that they cannot attend the new date, which they must prove.

Abrape President, Doreni Caramori, said: “The initiative aims to guarantee consumers’ rights, without disregarding the effects caused by cancellations of events and shows in the country.”