Competition and Consumer law is put in place to protect you, your organisation and end consumers from a number of untoward practices in the world of business. Whether you are a consumer or a business, the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (“The Act”) is in place to protect you and your rights. There are a number of different ways in which the law can protect you from unscrupulous businesses, the following are two of the major points from the Act.
Anti Competitive Practises
A business practise which prevents competition from occurring in the market is not allowed under the Act, this includes anti competition agreements, exclusive dealing and collective bargaining & boycotts.
An example of these would be:
If all home builders from a certain area come together and agree that they will all bid the same amount on a development project, this would constitute an anti competition agreement.
If a supplier will only supply seeds to a florist, based on them purchasing soil from their sister company, this would constitute a specific type of exclusive dealing called third line forcing.
If a group of cleaning companies come together and refuse to service a client unless they commit to a pre-arranged price, this would be classed as a collective boycott.
Advertising and Promotion
It is required by law that any statements made by a business must be true and can be substantiated if required. These statements can include comparing a businesses product or service with a competitor; statements about the country of origin of a product and quality claims like fat-free, free range and non-toxic. It is also against the law to create bait advertising statements – these are statements which offer items on sale from a full price that has never existed.
Claims which are made through social media will also fall under the advertising and promotion regulations. If a business were to tweet or post about a celebrity endorsement or make claims about the quality of originally of their product which are false – they will be in breach of the law.
Do You Think Someone Is In Breach Of The Law?
If you feel that a competitor or supplier is in breach of consumer and competition law, you should start to gather evidence to support your case. Competition and Consumer Law is taken very seriously as it could have serious effects on not only your business but numerous end consumers.
If you feel that someone is in breach of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 contact the Competition & Consumer Law team at Antunes Lawyers Sydney today on 02 9964 0499.