One year after the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) came into effect, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) chairman Rod Sims has urged businesses to increase their efforts in meeting their obligations under the new laws.
Addressing the in-house counsel of the top 200 ASX-listed companies in Sydney, Sims praised the majority of Australian businesses which have recognised their obligations under the ACL.
“For the vast majority of Australian businesses, full legal compliance is an everyday occurrence,” he said.
Despite this, Sims said the ACCC still sees too many cases of businesses engaging in misleading or deceptive conduct, including false or misleading claims in advertising or marketing.
“Too many businesses still have a long way to go before they meet legal and public expectations regarding accuracy and honesty in dealing with consumers,” he said. “The ACCC remains vigilant over misleading and deceptive conduct.”
According to the ACCC, it has issued 69 infringement notices to businesses since they were provided for in the ACL, to a total value of more than $450,000. Many of these notices were for false or misleading representations. The Federal Court has awarded more than $11.2 million in penalties, with the high-profile cases being for false or misleading representations in advertising or marketing.