A number of changes have been made to the Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) (TPA) as Australian Consumer Law (ACL) reforms have been progressively implemented, with the final portion commencing on 1 January 2011. In addition to these changes the TPA has been renamed the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) (CCA).This is the thirdin a series of blogs summarising the changes and the implications for businesses operating in Australia.
In relation to goods and services provided before 1 January 2011, the TPA still implies certain protection terms into consumer contracts for the supply of goods and services. The new ACL replaces the implied warranties and conditions regime in the TPA with a comprehensive set of statutory consumer guarantees and trader obligations for consumer goods and services. In effect, this aims to provide a higher degree of certainty as to consumer’s rights. The guarantees are as follows:
The key difference between the ACL and the TPA is now goods must be of ‘acceptable’, as opposed to ‘merchantable,’ quality. Acceptable qualityis defined in s54(2) of the ACL such that goods are of acceptable quality if they are:
This is subject to a ‘reasonable consumer’ test, such that goods are considered to meet those standards if a reasonable consumer, who is fully acquainted with the state and condition of the goods, would regard them as acceptable.
with Max Ezerins