Implementing a business compliance program

  • Businesses should put a compliance program in place to help them comply with the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.
  • The court may require a business to implement a compliance program if they breach the Act.
  • The ACCC’s templates show what a good compliance program can look like.

What the ACCC does

  • We provide resources to help businesses implement good, legally acceptable compliance programs.
  • We review a business’s compliance program when it offers us a court-enforceable undertaking as a way of resolving a matter.

What the ACCC can't do

  • We don’t provide legal advice on compliance programs.
  • We don’t review individual compliance programs unless they are part of a court-enforceable undertaking offered to us as a way of resolving a matter.

Benefits of a compliance program

A compliance program is a business’s internal system or process designed to:

  • identify and reduce the risk of breaching the Competition and Consumer Act 2010
  • fix any breach that occurs
  • create a culture of compliance within the business.

The ACCC recommends that every business implement a compliance program as part of good governance. What the compliance program should contain depends on the size, operations, and risk profile of the business.

Getting help to develop a compliance program

If your business doesn’t have the resources to develop a tailored compliance program, you can use one of the ACCC’s templates. The templates outline what we believe a good, legally acceptable compliance program should contain. You may need to change them to suit your business.

There are 4 templates available. Templates have been scaled to suit different sized businesses ranging from micro-businesses to large businesses. However, you should also consider the specific circumstances of your business. For example, elements from the templates designed for larger businesses may be needed for businesses that are small but high risk.

For more help with a compliance program, seek legal advice.

Compliance programs as part of an undertaking or enforcement

If a business has breached the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, it can sign a legal document, called an undertaking, in which it commits to take steps to resolve the issue.

The undertaking may include implementing a compliance program to prevent future breaches.

There can be legal penalties if a business doesn’t comply with the terms of an undertaking that the ACCC has accepted from the business, as a way of resolving the matter. The legal consequences come under section 87B of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.

All undertakings made under section 87B are published in a undertakings register on the ACCC website.

Where we take court proceedings against a business for a breach of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, the court may order the business to implement a compliance program.

See also

Section 87B undertakings register