ChatGPT – Product warrantees & consumer law
23rd February 2023
I quite often see posts on social media that suggest the poster is blissfully unaware of their rights under Australian consumer law. Don’t get fobbed off by a retailer who may well be ignorant of the law and your rights, and will frequently try to wriggle out from under if you do come back with a faulty product.
Q: Under Australian consumer law, what is the best way to handle a vendor who will not honour the warranty on a 3 year old washing machine? Cite references.
A: Under Australian Consumer Law, a consumer has the right to a repair, replacement or refund if a product fails to meet the consumer guarantees, including that the product is of acceptable quality, fit for purpose and matches any description or demonstration provided.
If a vendor will not honor the warranty on a 3 year old washing machine, the consumer can take the following steps:
Contact the vendor: The consumer should first contact the vendor and explain the issue, providing evidence of the problem and the warranty. The vendor may be willing to resolve the issue without the need for further action.
Seek mediation: If the vendor is unwilling to resolve the issue, the consumer can seek mediation through the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO). The ASBFEO provides a free dispute resolution service to help resolve disputes between small businesses and consumers.
Lodge a complaint with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC): If the issue cannot be resolved through mediation, the consumer can lodge a complaint with the ACCC. The ACCC can investigate the complaint and take action against the vendor if they are found to be in breach of Australian Consumer Law.
Australian Consumer Law: https://www.accc.gov.au/consumers/consumer-rights-guarantees/consumer-guarantees
Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman: https://www.asbfeo.gov.au/dispute-resolution
ACCC Complaints and Reports: https://www.accc.gov.au/consumers/complaints-problems/complaints-and-reports