Consumers

The National Energy Market

An overview of the decisions that have led to the current problems and proposed solutions to address them.

Full Court finds LG made misleading representations

The Full Federal Court has partially upheld an appeal by the ACCC against an earlier judgment dismissing the ACCC’s case against LG Electronics Australia Pty Ltd (LG).

The Full Court found that LG made two representations to consumers that were false, overturning the initial court decision, but dismissed the ACCC’s appeal in respect of other LG statements made to consumers.

Country of origin food labelling surveillance to commence

After 1 July, Australian consumers will have much greater certainty about the origins of the food they buy, due to the introduction of mandatory Country of Origin food labelling. The ACCC will conduct market surveillance checks on 10,000 food products to ensure businesses are correctly displaying the new labels.

All businesses–including manufacturers, processors and importers that offer food for retail sale in Australia–will need to comply with the Country of Origin Food Labelling Information Standard, which specifies how claims can be made about the origin of food products.

ACCC seeks Special Leave to appeal Full Federal Court’s Pfizer judgment

The ACCC has sought Special Leave from the High Court to appeal the Full Federal Court‘s judgment of 25 May 2018 which upheld the dismissal of allegations against Pfizer Australia Pty Ltd (Pfizer) by the trial judge.

The ACCC alleges that Pfizer misused its substantial market power and engaged in exclusive dealing conduct for an anti-competitive purpose in breach of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (CCA).

ACCC targets misleading organic claims

Dreamz Pty Ltd, trading as GAIA Skin Naturals (GAIA), has paid $37,800 in penalties for alleged false or misleading representations after the ACCC issued three infringement notices.

GAIA described its Natural Baby Bath & Body Wash, Baby Shampoo and Baby Moisturiser as “Pure ★ Natural ★ Organic”. However, these products contain two synthetic chemical preservatives: sodium hydroxyl methyl glycinate and phenoxyethanol.

Alinta Energy misled consumers on discounts

Alinta Energy (Alinta) has undertaken to compensate thousands of Victorians for making misleading electricity price comparisons which the ACCC considered were likely in breach of the Australian Consumer Law.

Between 9 December 2017 and 28 February 2018, Alinta’s advertisements compared increases in its competitors’ standing or undiscounted tariff rates to decreases in Alinta’s discounted tariff rates.

iPhone and iPad misrepresentations cost Apple Inc $9 million in penalties

The Federal Court ordered Apple Inc (Apple US) to pay $9 million in penalties for making false or misleading representations to customers with faulty iPhones and iPads about their rights under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL).

The ACCC took action against Apple US and Apple Pty Ltd (Apple Australia) following an investigation of complaints relating to ‘error 53’. This error disabled some iPhones and iPads after owners downloaded an update to Apple’s ‘iOS’ operating system.