Category: Competition and Consumer Law

Lit up! E-retailers of e-cigarettes fined for misleading conduct

The Federal Court found that three online retailers and their directors had engaged in “serious” contraventions of the Australian Consumer Law for misleading Australian consumers as to the health benefits of e-cigarettes in three separate decisions that emphasise the importance of cooperation as a mitigating factor.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v The Joystick Company Pty Ltd, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Social-Lites Pty Ltd, and Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Burden [2017] FCA 397, [2017] FCA 398, and [2017] FCA 399

Unconscionable Purchasing?

The ACCC recently won a resounding victory against Coles in an action for statutory unconscionability. Coles is one of the two large supermarket retailers in Australia. Now the ACCC’s sights are set on the other large retailer: Woolworths.

More Effective Anti-Monopolization?

The Commonwealth government’s ‘root and branch’ review of Australia’s competition laws has reached the half-way mark. Proposed reform of section 46 of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 is especially controversial.

Informed Cooperation Fuels Consumer Harm?

ACCC v Informed Sources (Australia) Pty Ltd & Ors VID450/2014 – In August this year the ACCC launched Federal Court proceedings against retail petrol suppliers. The case is an important test of the application of Australia’s competition laws to ‘tacit collusion’. The ACCC has to date had minimal success in this area.

Attempting To Collude Won’t Fly

In 2012 the ACCC successfully took Flight Centre to court for attempting to collude with three international airlines. This case is a very rare example of the ACCC making use of the law of attempted collusion (rather than actual collusion).