We review and update our publications for legislative and other changes. Publications under review are kept on the website for research and general information purposes.
On 28 December 2012 the value of a penalty unit increased from $110 to $170. Publications that refer to penalty units will be reviewed and updated to reflect the increase.
Several of the penalties administered by the ACCC are calculated using penalty units rather than dollar figures. The implications of this legislative change are that, in relation to penalties calculated using penalty units:
- administrative penalties (in the case of the ACCC, infringement penalty notices) will be increased
- maximum available penalties for some court-imposed fines will also rise.
The new penalty unit value will only apply to contraventions that occur on or after 28 December 2012. This means that the changes will not impact on contraventions that occur before 28 December 2012, or current proceedings for contraventions that took place before that date.
The penalty unit value has not been adjusted since 1997. Under the new legislation, the value of the penalty unit will be reviewed every three years.
The Australian Consumer Law (ACL) was introduced on 1 January 2011 and replaced previous Commonwealth, state and territory consumer protection legislation in fair trading acts. It is contained in a schedule to the Trade Practices Act 1974, which has been renamed the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (CCA).
Key changes introduced by the ACL included new consumer protections, a range of new enforcement powers for the ACCC and other regulators, and the introduction of a national product safety system.
All ACCC publications that refer to the Trade Practices Act are under review.