The ACCC has accepted a court-enforceable undertaking from jewellery business Pandora to review its consumer rights policies and staff training after Pandora acknowledged it is likely to have contravened the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) by making misleading representations to consumers about their consumer guarantee rights.
The ACCC received complaints that Pandora staff told customers seeking redress for faulty products that it did not provide refunds and that Pandora’s warranty policy overrode the consumer guarantees protections under the ACL.
Following an investigation, the ACCC identified that Pandora’s website contained confusing or inaccurate information on consumer guarantee rights under the ACL. It also noted that information on Pandora’s website about its product warranty failed to include mandatory text that states that consumers are entitled to a replacement or repair, and in some cases a refund, if their goods are faulty.
“Pandora has acknowledged that it may have misled customers about their consumer guarantee rights to refunds when there was a major fault with their product. They also have admitted that by doing so they likely breached the Australian Consumer Law,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.
“Consumer rights to a repair, replacement or refund cannot be excluded, restricted or modified by a business’ warranty policy.”
“If consumers have purchased a product that has a major fault, they can request a full refund from their place of purchase,” Ms Court said.
Pandora has undertaken to arrange for an external review of its policies and procedures relating to exchanges, repairs and refunds, to ensure customer claims for refunds and other remedies are dealt with appropriately and in accordance with the ACL.
Pandora will also conduct a review of its ACL compliance program and improve its staff training and complaints handling systems.
Pandora’s undertaking can be found here.
In Australia, Pandora is made up of a network of 143 outlets, most of which are franchisees.
More information on a consumer’s right to a repair, replacement or a refund can be found on the ACCC’s website: Repair, replace, refund.
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