Competition and Consumer Act 2010

RFG to pay certain franchisees as ACCC settles legal action

The ACCC has accepted a court-enforceable undertaking from Retail Food Group Ltd (ASX: RFG) in which RFG, the operator of many well-known franchising brands, has agreed to make payments to and waive historical debts of a number of affected current and former franchisees, in relation to the purchase of certain corporate stores by these franchisees.

RFG will also pay $5 million to franchisees of Michel Patisserie stores who paid levies into that franchise’s marketing fund between 1 July 2012 and 30 June 2017.

Dominique Grubisa and DG Institute in court for alleged misleading representations

The ACCC has commenced proceedings in the Federal Court against Master Wealth Control Pty Limited, trading as DG Institute, for allegedly making false or misleading representations about the Real Estate Rescue program and the Master Wealth Control program DG Institute offered to consumers, in breach of the Australian Consumer Law.

Court dismisses ACCC case against Google

The Federal Court has dismissed the ACCC’s case, finding that Google LLC (Google) did not mislead Australian consumers when it published an on-screen notification to Australian users, and changed its privacy policy to expand the scope of its use and collection of personal data.

The ACCC had alleged that the notification was misleading because it did not adequately inform consumers about these changes

Uber to pay $21m for misleading representations about Uber Taxi fares and cancellation fees

The Federal Court has ordered ridesharing platform Uber to pay a penalty of $21 million after Uber admitted it had engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct and made false or misleading representations to consumers in its app and on its website, in proceedings brought by the ACCC.

Uber admitted it breached the Australian Consumer Law by engaging in misleading conduct and making false or misleading representations in relation to cancellation messages and the price of Uber Taxi rides.

Telstra in court for alleged misleading representations about Belong broadband speed

The ACCC has instituted Federal Court proceedings against Telstra for allegedly making false or misleading representations about upload speed to residential broadband customers of its cheaper brand, Belong.

In October and November 2020, Telstra migrated nearly 9000 customers who were on a Belong NBN plan with a maximum download speed of 100 megabits per second (Mbps) and a maximum upload speed of 40Mbps, to a service with a maximum upload speed of 20Mbps.

Turf breeder to address concerted practices concerns

Turf breeder Lawn Solutions Australia Group Pty Ltd (LSA) has provided a court-enforceable undertaking to address ACCC concerns that LSA may have engaged in a concerted practice by communicating with turf growers and resellers about the prices for turf.

On various occasions between November 2017 and May 2021, LSA circulated price surveys with requests that growers and resellers set their prices in line with its recommended retail prices (RRP). The communications also put pressure on individual growers or resellers to increase prices if they sold turf at a price below the RRP.

SmileDirectClub to pay $3.5m for misleading claims about health insurance reimbursement for teeth aligners

The Federal Court has ordered SmileDirectClub Aus Pty Ltd and its US parent company, SmileDirectClub LLC (together SmileDirectClub), to pay penalties totalling $3.5 million and to compensate customers, after court action by the ACCC.

SmileDirectClub admitted that between May 2019 and October 2020, it made false or misleading statements to consumers on its website and in emails, SMS text messages and information cards provided in store, in contravention of Australian Consumer Law.

Dell Australia in court for allegedly misleading consumers about the cost of add-on monitors

The ACCC has instituted Federal Court proceedings against Dell Australia Pty Limited (Dell Australia) for allegedly making false or misleading representations regarding the price of monitors that consumers could add on to purchases of Dell computers.

It is alleged that from at least August 2019 to 16 December 2021, Dell Australia made false or misleading representations on its website about the prices of monitors and the potential savings when a monitor was purchased with a computer.