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Inside track: Competition & Consumer

28 September 2020

#Competition & Consumer Law

Inside track: Competition & Consumer

In the media

Text two million Aussies have received
Australia's largest vehicle recall is well on its way to becoming the country's biggest class action with more than two million Aussies called on to take part. The class action alleges the seven carmakers failed to comply with the merchantable quality guarantee in the Trade Practices Act 1974 or acceptable quality guarantee in the Australian Consumer Law; engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct; and engaged in unconscionable conduct." (26 September 2020).  More...

Now or never – Time to fix fundraising
The Charities Crisis Cabinet have come up with a better fix. Charities are registered and regulated by the ACNC, and fundraising is also regulated by Australian Consumer Law which prohibits misleading and deceptive conduct. There are also privacy laws, the Telecommunications Code and local by-laws about collections. In practice, no other authority is needed (21 September 2020).  More...

Save money by checking and comparing prices when grocery shopping
Queensland’s Office of Fair Trading is reminding consumers they can check and compare unit prices when shopping for groceries to save money as part of a national awareness campaign launched. For more information on unit pricing and how it can help you save money, visit the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s website (21 September 2020).  More... 

APRA and ACCC sign closer collaboration
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) have signed an updated Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) designed to foster closer collaboration between the two regulators (21 September 2020).  More...

Oscar Wylee fined $3.5 million for breaches of Australian Consumer Law
Eyewear retailer admits its core brand claims of donating a pair of glasses for every pair sold found to be false and misleading. The company was found to have donated just 3181 pairs of frames to charity without lenses between 2014 and 2018, against sales of 328,010 pairs of glasses (18 September 2020).  More...

Airline competition critical for consumers and economy
The ACCC’s Airline Competition in Australia report released explores the significant impact of COVID-19 on the sector and outlines the approach the ACCC will take to protecting competition.  The report outlines the types of activities including airlines entering into agreements with suppliers to prevent competitors from offering services, or altering schedules to prevent a competitor entering the market (17 September 2020).  More...

Lottoland cleared over $238m claim levelled by man who thought he had won Powerball
A man has lost a $238 million gambling dispute against Lottoland — the second time in recent months the international betting giant has come up trumps after being accused of deceptive conduct involving jackpot competitions mistaken as Powerball draws (16 September 2020).  More...

Practice and regulation

ACCC Grocery unit prices
Checking and comparing unit prices on supermarket shelf labels or online can help you save money when grocery shopping. Large grocery stores and some online grocery retailers must display the unit price and the unit of measurement of a grocery item alongside its selling price on the shelf label for the item (unless the item is exempt).  More...

ACCC Note: Screen scraping warnings not anti-competitive
The ACCC, responding to questions on notice as part of a parliamentary inquiry by the Senate Select Committee on Financial Technology and Regulatory Technology, said that “statements or warnings regarding potential security or safety risks associated with screen scraping and sharing passwords … does not appear to have the purpose or effect of substantially lessening competition.” On 24 April 2020, the reporting date was extended from the first sitting day in October 2020 to 16 April 2021.


Primary Securities Limited v Aurora Funds Management Limited [2020] NSWCA 230
1. Refuse the appellant leave to file a further amended notice of appeal.
CORPORATIONS — Meeting of members of listed scheme called by members —– Requirement of s 252D Corporations Act that a meeting be called “in the same way - so far as is possible - in which meetings of the scheme's members may be called by the responsible entity” – whether notice of meeting required to identify members calling the meeting
CORPORATIONS — Meeting of members — Notice — whether proper notice given to directors and auditor of incumbent responsible entity – where some unitholders not given proper notice – whether defects substantive or procedural irregularities
CORPORATIONS — Meeting of members — Effect of defect or irregularity ––– whether procedural irregularity causing substantial injustice – requirements for the making of orders under ss 1322(2) and 1322(4) Corporations Act
CORPORATIONS — Misleading or deceptive conduct — whether explanatory memorandum accompanying notice of meeting misleading by omission – whether reasonable expectation to disclose matters of suspicion
Australian Consumer Law, s 18

Mistrina Pty Ltd v Australian Consulting Engineers Pty Ltd [2020] NSWCA 223
CONTRACTS — Misleading conduct under statute — Misleading or deceptive conduct — Representations — Loss — Causation and remoteness
CONTRACTS — Misleading conduct under statute — Remedies — Measure of damages — Where loss of opportunity

Schieb v Burnheim [2020] NSWSC 1254
CONSUMER LAW — Misleading or deceptive conduct — Representations as to future matters — Damage not suffered at time of entry into original agreement but when future matter fails to come to pass CONTRACTS — Breach of contract — Consequences of breach — Right to damages — Construction of obligation to “do all things necessary and sign all appropriate documentation to” bring about specified result — Promise to achieve that result and not limited to best or reasonable endeavours 

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