What the ACCC does

  • We check businesses are complying with prescribed industry codes.

  • We request information and documents from businesses as part of our compliance checks.
  • We can take action when businesses have not complied with a prescribed industry code.

What the ACCC can't do

  • We don’t provide advice to business on whether their documents or practices comply with a code.

  • We don’t check compliance with industry‑led voluntary industry codes.

On this page

The ACCC enforces codes by checking compliance

Prescribed industry codes are codes of conduct that are based in legislation and enforced by the ACCC.

Each code has different rules on the information and documents that a business must keep, generate or publish.

If a code requires a business to keep, generate or publish information or documents, businesses must supply these to us when we request them.

We follow a process for compliance checks

The ACCC follows this process when carrying out an industry code compliance check.

1. We select the businesses for a compliance check

We can select any business covered by a prescribed industry code for a compliance check.

2. We serve a notice

If we select your business for a compliance check, you will receive a section 51ADD notice that sets out the information or documents you must provide.

Businesses have 21 days to provide the information or documents.

If you think you may have a problem complying with the notice within the 21 days, contact us as soon as possible to discuss your situation. We may decide to extend the notice period to give you more time to comply or we may decide to vary the scope of the notice.

3. Business produces the information or documents

The section 51ADD notice will tell you how you can provide the information or documents to the ACCC, for example via file share or email.

You can contact us if you have any questions about the section 51ADD notice. You can also get your own legal advice about complying with the notice.

Giving false or misleading information or documents to the ACCC in response to a section 51ADD notice is a serious offence.

4. We review and take any necessary action

We review the information or documents and let you know the outcome of the compliance check.

We don’t approve documents or provide advice on how to make your documents compliant with a code.

If the compliance check reveals that a business may have breached the laws we administer, we’ll engage further with the business about the issues. We may take administrative or enforcement action in line with our Compliance and enforcement policy.

For some breaches of these laws, we can seek financial penalties through court action.

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