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Competition and Consumer Act 2010

Authoritative Version
Act No. 51 of 1974 as amended, taking into account amendments up to Treasury Laws Amendment (News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code) Act 2021
An Act relating to competition, fair trading and consumer protection, and for other purposes
Administered by: Attorney-General's; Treasury; Industry, Science, Energy and Resources; Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications
Registered 23 Mar 2021
Start Date 03 Mar 2021
Table of contents.

Commonwealth Coat of Arms of Australia

Competition and Consumer Act 2010

No. 51, 1974

Compilation No. 134

Compilation date:                              3 March 2021

Includes amendments up to:            Act No. 21, 2021

Registered:                                         23 March 2021

This compilation is in 3 volumes

Volume 1:       sections 1–110

Volume 2:       sections 10.01–186

Volume 3:       Schedules

                        Endnotes

Each volume has its own contents

About this compilation

This compilation

This is a compilation of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 that shows the text of the law as amended and in force on 3 March 2021 (the compilation date).

The notes at the end of this compilation (the endnotes) include information about amending laws and the amendment history of provisions of the compiled law.

Uncommenced amendments

The effect of uncommenced amendments is not shown in the text of the compiled law. Any uncommenced amendments affecting the law are accessible on the Legislation Register (www.legislation.gov.au). The details of amendments made up to, but not commenced at, the compilation date are underlined in the endnotes. For more information on any uncommenced amendments, see the series page on the Legislation Register for the compiled law.

Application, saving and transitional provisions for provisions and amendments

If the operation of a provision or amendment of the compiled law is affected by an application, saving or transitional provision that is not included in this compilation, details are included in the endnotes.

Editorial changes

For more information about any editorial changes made in this compilation, see the endnotes.

Modifications

If the compiled law is modified by another law, the compiled law operates as modified but the modification does not amend the text of the law. Accordingly, this compilation does not show the text of the compiled law as modified. For more information on any modifications, see the series page on the Legislation Register for the compiled law.

Self‑repealing provisions

If a provision of the compiled law has been repealed in accordance with a provision of the law, details are included in the endnotes.

  

  

  


Contents

Schedule 1—The Schedule version of Part IV                                 1

Part 1—Schedule version of Part IV                                                                          1

Division 1—Cartel conduct                                                                                       1

Subdivision A—Introduction                                                                                   1

45AA.... Simplified outline................................................................................ 1

45AB.... Definitions.......................................................................................... 1

45AC.... Extended meaning of party................................................................. 3

45AD.... Cartel provisions................................................................................. 3

45AE..... Meaning of expressions in other provisions of this Act...................... 9

Subdivision B—Offences etc.                                                                                10

45AF..... Making a contract etc. containing a cartel provision.......................... 10

45AG.... Giving effect to a cartel provision..................................................... 11

45AH.... Determining guilt.............................................................................. 12

45AI...... Court may make related civil orders.................................................. 12

Subdivision C—Civil penalty provisions                                                           13

45AJ..... Making a contract etc. containing a cartel provision.......................... 13

45AK.... Giving effect to a cartel provision..................................................... 13

Subdivision D—Exceptions                                                                                    13

45AL..... Conduct notified................................................................................ 13

45AM... Cartel provision subject to grant of authorisation.............................. 14

45AN.... Contracts, arrangements or understandings between related bodies corporate          14

45AO.... Joint ventures—prosecution.............................................................. 15

45AP..... Joint ventures—civil penalty proceedings......................................... 16

45AQ.... Resale price maintenance................................................................... 17

45AR.... Exclusive dealing.............................................................................. 17

45AS..... Dual listed company arrangement..................................................... 18

45AT..... Acquisition of shares or assets.......................................................... 18

45AU.... Collective acquisition of goods or services by the parties to a contract, arrangement or understanding    19

Division 2—Other provisions                                                                                 20

45.......... Contracts, arrangements or understandings that restrict dealings or affect competition            20

45D....... Secondary boycotts for the purpose of causing substantial loss or damage              24

45DA.... Secondary boycotts for the purpose of causing substantial lessening of competition               24

45DC.... Involvement and liability of employee organisations......................... 25

45DD.... Situations in which boycotts permitted.............................................. 27

45E........ Prohibition of contracts, arrangements or understandings affecting the supply or acquisition of goods or services 30

45EA..... Provisions contravening section 45E not to be given effect.............. 34

45EB..... Sections 45D to 45EA do not affect operation of other provisions of Part               34

46.......... Misuse of market power................................................................... 34

47.......... Exclusive dealing.............................................................................. 36

48.......... Resale price maintenance................................................................... 43

49.......... Dual listed company arrangements that affect competition................ 43

50.......... Prohibition of acquisitions that would result in a substantial lessening of competition             45

51.......... Exceptions......................................................................................... 46

Schedule 2—The Australian Consumer Law                                 51

Chapter 1—Introduction                                                                                                 66

1............ Application of this Schedule............................................................. 66

2............ Definitions........................................................................................ 66

3............ Meaning of consumer....................................................................... 82

4............ Misleading representations with respect to future matters................. 85

5............ When donations are treated as supplies or acquisitions..................... 86

6............ Related bodies corporate................................................................... 87

7............ Meaning of manufacturer................................................................. 87

8............ Goods affixed to land or premises.................................................... 88

9............ Meaning of safety defect in relation to goods.................................... 88

10.......... Asserting a right to payment............................................................. 89

11.......... References to acquisition, supply and re‑supply............................... 90

12.......... Application of Schedule in relation to leases and licences of land and buildings      91

13.......... Loss or damage to include injury...................................................... 91

14.......... Meaning of continuing credit contract.............................................. 91

15.......... Contraventions of this Schedule........................................................ 93

16.......... Severability....................................................................................... 93

17.......... References to provisions in this Schedule......................................... 93

Chapter 2—General protections                                                                                 94

Part 2‑1—Misleading or deceptive conduct                                                   94

18.......... Misleading or deceptive conduct....................................................... 94

19.......... Application of this Part to information providers.............................. 94

Part 2‑2—Unconscionable conduct                                                                     97

20.......... Unconscionable conduct within the meaning of the unwritten law.... 97

21.......... Unconscionable conduct in connection with goods or services......... 97

22.......... Matters the court may have regard to for the purposes of section 21 98

22A....... Presumptions relating to whether representations are misleading.... 101

Part 2‑3—Unfair contract terms                                                                        102

23.......... Unfair terms of consumer contracts and small business contracts... 102

24.......... Meaning of unfair........................................................................... 103

25.......... Examples of unfair terms................................................................ 103

26.......... Terms that define main subject matter of consumer contracts or small business contracts etc. are unaffected          105

27.......... Standard form contracts.................................................................. 105

28.......... Contracts to which this Part does not apply.................................... 106

Chapter 3—Specific protections                                                                               107

Part 3‑1—Unfair practices                                                                                    107

Division 1—False or misleading representations etc.                                   107

29.......... False or misleading representations about goods or services.......... 107

30.......... False or misleading representations about sale etc. of land.............. 109

31.......... Misleading conduct relating to employment.................................... 109

32.......... Offering rebates, gifts, prizes etc..................................................... 110

33.......... Misleading conduct as to the nature etc. of goods........................... 111

34.......... Misleading conduct as to the nature etc. of services........................ 111

35.......... Bait advertising............................................................................... 111

36.......... Wrongly accepting payment............................................................ 112

37.......... Misleading representations about certain business activities........... 114

38.......... Application of provisions of this Division to information providers 115

Division 2—Unsolicited supplies                                                                        117

39.......... Unsolicited cards etc....................................................................... 117

40.......... Assertion of right to payment for unsolicited goods or services..... 118

41.......... Liability etc. of recipient for unsolicited goods................................ 119

42.......... Liability of recipient for unsolicited services................................... 120

43.......... Assertion of right to payment for unauthorised entries or advertisements                120

Division 3—Pyramid schemes                                                                            123

44.......... Participation in pyramid schemes.................................................... 123

45.......... Meaning of pyramid scheme........................................................... 123

46.......... Marketing schemes as pyramid schemes......................................... 124

Division 4—Pricing                                                                                               126

47.......... Multiple pricing............................................................................... 126

48.......... Single price to be specified in certain circumstances....................... 127

Division 5—Other unfair practices                                                                   131

49.......... Referral selling................................................................................ 131

50.......... Harassment and coercion................................................................ 131

Part 3‑2—Consumer transactions                                                                     132

Division 1—Consumer guarantees                                                                    132

Subdivision A—Guarantees relating to the supply of goods                       132

51.......... Guarantee as to title......................................................................... 132

52.......... Guarantee as to undisturbed possession.......................................... 132

53.......... Guarantee as to undisclosed securities etc....................................... 133

54.......... Guarantee as to acceptable quality................................................... 134

55.......... Guarantee as to fitness for any disclosed purpose etc..................... 136

56.......... Guarantee relating to the supply of goods by description................ 136

57.......... Guarantees relating to the supply of goods by sample or demonstration model       137

58.......... Guarantee as to repairs and spare parts........................................... 137

59.......... Guarantee as to express warranties................................................. 138

Subdivision B—Guarantees relating to the supply of services                   139

60.......... Guarantee as to due care and skill................................................... 139

61.......... Guarantees as to fitness for a particular purpose etc........................ 139

62.......... Guarantee as to reasonable time for supply..................................... 140

63.......... Services to which this Subdivision does not apply......................... 140

Subdivision C—Guarantees not to be excluded etc. by contract                141

64.......... Guarantees not to be excluded etc. by contract................................ 141

64A....... Limitation of liability for failures to comply with guarantees.......... 141

Subdivision D—Miscellaneous                                                                            143

65.......... Application of this Division to supplies of gas, electricity and telecommunications 143

66.......... Display notices................................................................................ 143

67.......... Conflict of laws............................................................................... 144

68.......... Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods......... 144

Division 2—Unsolicited consumer agreements                                              145

Subdivision A—Introduction                                                                               145

69.......... Meaning of unsolicited consumer agreement................................. 145

70.......... Presumption that agreements are unsolicited consumer agreements 146

71.......... Meaning of dealer........................................................................... 147

72.......... Meaning of negotiation................................................................... 147

Subdivision B—Negotiating unsolicited consumer agreements                 147

73.......... Permitted hours for negotiating an unsolicited consumer agreement 147

74.......... Disclosing purpose and identity...................................................... 148

75.......... Ceasing to negotiate on request....................................................... 148

76.......... Informing person of termination period etc..................................... 149

77.......... Liability of suppliers for contraventions by dealers......................... 150

Subdivision C—Requirements for unsolicited consumer agreements etc. 150

78.......... Requirement to give document to the consumer.............................. 150

79.......... Requirements for all unsolicited consumer agreements etc.............. 151

80.......... Additional requirements for unsolicited consumer agreements not negotiated by telephone     152

81.......... Requirements for amendments of unsolicited consumer agreements 153

Subdivision D—Terminating unsolicited consumer agreements               153

82.......... Terminating an unsolicited consumer agreement during the termination period        153

83.......... Effect of termination........................................................................ 155

84.......... Obligations of suppliers on termination.......................................... 156

85.......... Obligations and rights of consumers on termination....................... 156

86.......... Prohibition on supplies etc.............................................................. 158

87.......... Repayment of payments received after termination......................... 159

88.......... Prohibition on recovering amounts after termination....................... 159

Subdivision E—Miscellaneous                                                                            160

89.......... Certain provisions of unsolicited consumer agreements void.......... 160

90.......... Waiver of rights.............................................................................. 161

91.......... Application of this Division to persons to whom rights of consumers and suppliers are assigned etc.    161

92.......... Application of this Division to supplies to third parties.................. 161

93.......... Effect of contravening this Division................................................ 162

94.......... Regulations may limit the application of this Division.................... 162

95.......... Application of this Division to certain conduct covered by the Corporations Act    162

Division 3—Lay‑by agreements                                                                         163

96.......... Lay‑by agreements must be in writing etc....................................... 163

97.......... Termination of lay‑by agreements by consumers............................ 163

98.......... Termination of lay‑by agreements by suppliers............................... 164

99.......... Effect of termination........................................................................ 164

Division 3A—Gift cards                                                                                       166

Subdivision A—Introduction                                                                               166

99A....... Meaning of gift card....................................................................... 166

Subdivision B—Requirements relating to gift cards                                     166

99B....... Gift cards to be redeemable for at least 3 years............................... 166

99C....... When gift card ceases to be redeemable to appear prominently on gift card             167

99D....... Terms and conditions not to allow post‑supply fees....................... 167

99E........ Post‑supply fees not to be demanded or received............................ 167

99F........ Certain terms and conditions of gift card void................................. 168

Subdivision C—Miscellaneous                                                                            168

99G....... Regulations may limit application of this Division.......................... 168

Division 4—Miscellaneous                                                                                   170

100........ Supplier must provide proof of transaction etc................................ 170

101........ Consumer may request an itemised bill........................................... 171

102........ Prescribed requirements for warranties against defects................... 172

103........ Repairers must comply with prescribed requirements..................... 172

Part 3‑3—Safety of consumer goods and product related services 174

Division 1—Safety standards                                                                              174

104........ Making safety standards for consumer goods and product related services             174

105........ Declaring safety standards for consumer goods and product related services          175

106........ Supplying etc. consumer goods that do not comply with safety standards               175

107........ Supplying etc. product related services that do not comply with safety standards    177

108........ Requirement to nominate a safety standard..................................... 178

Division 2—Bans on consumer goods and product related services         179

Subdivision A—Interim bans                                                                              179

109........ Interim bans on consumer goods or product related services that will or may cause injury to any person etc.         179

110........ Places in which interim bans apply................................................. 180

111........ Ban period for interim bans............................................................. 180

112........ Interaction of multiple interim bans................................................. 181

113........ Revocation of interim bans.............................................................. 182

Subdivision B—Permanent bans                                                                        182

114........ Permanent bans on consumer goods or product related services..... 182

115........ Places in which permanent bans apply............................................ 183

116........ When permanent bans come into force............................................ 183

117........ Revocation of permanent bans........................................................ 183

Subdivision C—Compliance with interim bans and permanent bans       184

118........ Supplying etc. consumer goods covered by a ban........................... 184

119........ Supplying etc. product related services covered by a ban................ 185

Subdivision D—Temporary exemption from mutual recognition principles 186

120........ Temporary exemption under the Trans‑Tasman Mutual Recognition Act 1997       186

121........ Temporary exemption under the Mutual Recognition Act 1992....... 186

Division 3—Recall of consumer goods                                                             188

Subdivision A—Compulsory recall of consumer goods                               188

122........ Compulsory recall of consumer goods............................................ 188

123........ Contents of a recall notice............................................................... 188

124........ Obligations of a supplier in relation to a recall notice...................... 190

125........ Notification by persons who supply consumer goods outside Australia if there is compulsory recall     191

126........ Interaction of multiple recall notices................................................ 191

127........ Compliance with recall notices........................................................ 192

Subdivision B—Voluntary recall of consumer goods                                   193

128........ Notification requirements for a voluntary recall of consumer goods 193

Division 4—Safety warning notices                                                                   195

129........ Safety warning notices about consumer goods and product related services            195

130........ Announcement of the results of an investigation etc....................... 195

Division 5—Consumer goods, or product related services, associated with death or serious injury or illness      197

131........ Suppliers to report consumer goods associated with the death or serious injury or illness of any person                197

132........ Suppliers to report product related services associated with the death or serious injury or illness of any person     199

132A..... Confidentiality of notices given under this Division....................... 201

Division 6—Miscellaneous                                                                                   203

133........ Liability under a contract of insurance............................................. 203

Part 3‑4—Information standards                                                                      204

134........ Making information standards for goods and services.................... 204

135........ Declaring information standards for goods and services................. 204

136........ Supplying etc. goods that do not comply with information standards 205

137........ Supplying etc. services that do not comply with information standards 206

137A..... Safe harbour for complying with information standards about free range eggs        207

Part 3‑5—Liability of manufacturers for goods with safety defects 209

Division 1—Actions against manufacturers for goods with safety defects 209

138........ Liability for loss or damage suffered by an injured individual........ 209

139........ Liability for loss or damage suffered by a person other than an injured individual   209

140........ Liability for loss or damage suffered by a person if other goods are destroyed or damaged    210

141........ Liability for loss or damage suffered by a person if land, buildings or fixtures are destroyed or damaged              210

142........ Defences to defective goods actions................................................ 211

Division 2—Defective goods actions                                                                 212

143........ Time for commencing defective goods actions................................ 212

144........ Liability joint and several................................................................ 212

145........ Survival of actions.......................................................................... 212

146........ No defective goods action where workers’ compensation law etc. applies               212

147........ Unidentified manufacturer............................................................... 213

148........ Commonwealth liability for goods that are defective only because of compliance with Commonwealth mandatory standard........................................................................................... 213

149........ Representative actions by the regulator........................................... 214

Division 3—Miscellaneous                                                                                   215

150........ Application of all or any provisions of this Part etc. not to be excluded or modified                215

Chapter 4—Offences                                                                                                       216

Part 4‑1—Offences relating to unfair practices                                         216

Division 1—False or misleading representations etc.                                   216

151........ False or misleading representations about goods or services.......... 216

152........ False or misleading representations about sale etc. of land.............. 218

153........ Misleading conduct relating to employment.................................... 219

154........ Offering rebates, gifts, prizes etc..................................................... 220

155........ Misleading conduct as to the nature etc. of goods........................... 222

156........ Misleading conduct as to the nature etc. of services........................ 223

157........ Bait advertising............................................................................... 224

158........ Wrongly accepting payment............................................................ 226

159........ Misleading representations about certain business activities........... 228

160........ Application of provisions of this Division to information providers 229

Division 2—Unsolicited supplies                                                                        231

161........ Unsolicited cards etc....................................................................... 231

162........ Assertion of right to payment for unsolicited goods or services..... 232

163........ Assertion of right to payment for unauthorised entries or advertisements                233

Division 3—Pyramid schemes                                                                            236

164........ Participation in pyramid schemes.................................................... 236

Division 4—Pricing                                                                                               237

165........ Multiple pricing............................................................................... 237

166........ Single price to be specified in certain circumstances....................... 237

Division 5—Other unfair practices                                                                   240

167........ Referral selling................................................................................ 240

168........ Harassment and coercion................................................................ 241

Part 4‑2—Offences relating to consumer transactions                          243

Division 1—Consumer guarantees                                                                    243

169........ Display notices................................................................................ 243

Division 2—Unsolicited consumer agreements                                              244

Subdivision A—Negotiating unsolicited consumer agreements                 244

170........ Permitted hours for negotiating an unsolicited consumer agreement 244

171........ Disclosing purpose and identity...................................................... 244

172........ Ceasing to negotiate on request....................................................... 245

173........ Informing person of termination period etc..................................... 246

Subdivision B—Requirements for unsolicited consumer agreements etc. 247

174........ Requirement to give document to the consumer.............................. 247

175........ Requirements for all unsolicited consumer agreements etc.............. 248

176........ Additional requirements for unsolicited consumer agreements not negotiated by telephone     249

177........ Requirements for amendments of unsolicited consumer agreements 250

Subdivision C—Terminating unsolicited consumer agreements               251

178........ Obligations of suppliers on termination.......................................... 251

179........ Prohibition on supplies etc.............................................................. 251

180........ Repayment of payments received after termination......................... 252

181........ Prohibition on recovering amounts after termination....................... 252

Subdivision D—Miscellaneous                                                                            253

182........ Certain provisions of unsolicited consumer agreements void.......... 253

183........ Waiver of rights.............................................................................. 254

184........ Application of this Division to persons to whom rights of consumers and suppliers are assigned etc.    254

185........ Application of this Division to supplies to third parties.................. 255

186........ Regulations may limit the application of this Division.................... 255

187........ Application of this Division to certain conduct covered by the Corporations Act    255

Division 3—Lay‑by agreements                                                                         256

188........ Lay‑by agreements must be in writing etc....................................... 256

189........ Termination charges........................................................................ 256

190........ Termination of lay‑by agreements by suppliers............................... 257

191........ Refund of amounts.......................................................................... 257

Division 3A—Gift cards                                                                                       258

191A..... Gift cards to be redeemable for at least 3 years............................... 258

191B..... When gift card ceases to be redeemable to appear prominently on gift card             258

191C..... Terms and conditions not to allow post‑supply fees....................... 259

191D..... Post‑supply fees not to be demanded or received............................ 259

191E...... Regulations may limit the application of this Division.................... 259

Division 4—Miscellaneous                                                                                   261

192........ Prescribed requirements for warranties against defects................... 261

193........ Repairers must comply with prescribed requirements..................... 261

Part 4‑3—Offences relating to safety of consumer goods and product related services             262

Division 1—Safety standards                                                                              262

194........ Supplying etc. consumer goods that do not comply with safety standards               262

195........ Supplying etc. product related services that do not comply with safety standards    263

196........ Requirement to nominate a safety standard..................................... 264

Division 2—Bans on consumer goods and product related services         266

197........ Supplying etc. consumer goods covered by a ban........................... 266

198........ Supplying etc. product related services covered by a ban................ 267

Division 3—Recall of consumer goods                                                             269

199........ Compliance with recall orders......................................................... 269

200........ Notification by persons who supply consumer goods outside Australia if there is compulsory recall     270

201........ Notification requirements for a voluntary recall of consumer goods 270

Division 4—Consumer goods, or product related services, associated with death or serious injury or illness      272

202........ Suppliers to report consumer goods etc. associated with the death or serious injury or illness of any person          272

Part 4‑4—Offences relating to information standards                           273

203........ Supplying etc. goods that do not comply with information standards 273

204........ Supplying etc. services that do not comply with information standards 275

Part 4‑5—Offences relating to substantiation notices                            277

205........ Compliance with substantiation notices........................................... 277

206........ False or misleading information etc................................................. 277

Part 4‑6—Defences                                                                                                    279

207........ Reasonable mistake of fact.............................................................. 279

208........ Act or default of another person etc................................................ 279

209........ Publication of advertisements in the ordinary course of business... 280

210........ Supplying goods acquired for the purpose of re‑supply................. 280

211........ Supplying services acquired for the purpose of re‑supply.............. 282

Part 4‑7—Miscellaneous                                                                                         283

212........ Prosecutions to be commenced within 3 years................................ 283

213........ Preference must be given to compensation for victims.................... 283

214........ Penalties for contraventions of the same nature etc......................... 284

215........ Penalties for previous contraventions of the same nature etc........... 284

216........ Granting of injunctions etc.............................................................. 285

217........ Criminal proceedings not to be brought for contraventions of Chapter 2 or 3          285

Chapter 5—Enforcement and remedies                                                              287

Part 5‑1—Enforcement                                                                                           287

Division 1—Undertakings                                                                                    287

218........ Regulator may accept undertakings................................................. 287

Division 2—Substantiation notices                                                                    288

219........ Regulator may require claims to be substantiated etc....................... 288