Consumer laws and protections explained: Part 5

THE consumer laws (“ACL”) require that consumers be provided with certain guarantees for most consumer goods and services they purchase. These are separate to any store bought or issued warranty.

The guarantees are like a set of rules that come with the purchase of services or products and are designed to protect the consumer.

They cannot be restricted, excluded, limited or modified and any business that attempts to do so could face significant financial penalty.

With regards to the sale of goods, the ACL guarantees include (among other things) that the goods:

  • will be of an acceptable quality;
  • will be reasonably fit for the purpose the business told you they would be fit for or you otherwise made known to the business prior to purchasing;
  • if sold by description, will comply with that description.

Generally, if the goods do not comply with the guarantees the consumer will have rights available, such as repair, replacement, refund, and/or compensation for further financial loss.

Of course, each case will be fact specific and there will be circumstances that are not covered by the guarantees, for example, you simply change your mind, you caused the problem (e.g. you broke it), you purchased the goods from a private seller and not a business in trade or commerce.

Next week I will tell you about the changes to the ACL regarding gift cards and vouchers that will soon come into effect (in time for Christmas!)

Until next week – keep it legal!

Katie Caldow

*The legal information in this article is of a general nature only and not intended to be legal advice to rely upon.

Walker PenderConsumer laws and protections explained: Part 5