Consumer safeguard is national

IPSWICH consumers will be protected by a new national regime from today, replacing 20 separate Commonwealth, state and territory laws.

The Australian Consumer Law includes a new national unfair contract terms law covering standard-form contracts.

It also guarantees consumer rights when buying goods and services, which replaces existing laws on conditions and warranties.

National rules also apply for all lay-by agreements.

State and territory laws governing door-to-door sales and direct marketing have been replaced by a national law for unsolicited consumer agreements.

Introduction of the laws ends a lengthy process that began in 2008 when governments across the country agreed to harmonise consumer laws.

“For the first time, all consumers will have the same rights, no matter where they live in Australia,” Federal parliamentary secretary David Bradbury said.

The Productivity Commission had estimated that a harmonised consumer protection regime would provide up to $4.5 billion in benefits to the Australian economy, he said.



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