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COMPETITION AND CONSUMER AMENDMENT REGULATIONS 2011 (NO. 2) (SLI NO 225 OF 2011)
Select Legislative Instrument No. 225
Subject Competition and Consumer Act 2010
Competition and Consumer Amendment Regulations 2011 (No. 2)
The Australian Consumer Law (ACL) is contained in Schedule 2 to the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (the Act). The Act and the Competition and Consumer Regulations 2010 (the Principal Regulations) provide for the regulation of competition, fair trading and consumer protection. The ACL commenced on 1 January 2011.
Section 139G of the Act provides that the Governor-General may make regulations prescribing matters required or permitted by the ACL to be prescribed, or necessary or convenient to be prescribed for carrying out or giving effect to that ACL.
Division 2 of Part 3-2 of the ACL (the unsolicited consumer agreement provisions) regulates the making of unsolicited offers to supply goods and services to a consumer and the agreements arising from such offers.
Section 94 of the ACL provides that regulations may provide for particular unsolicited consumer agreement provisions to not apply to or in relation to circumstances, agreements or the conduct of businesses of a kind specified in the regulations.
The Regulations amend the Principal Regulations to relax the prohibition in section 86 of the ACL on supply of goods priced $500 or less during the 10 day cooling off period, to allow consumers to immediately take receipt of goods they have consented to buy.
Details of the Regulations are set out in the Attachment.
The Regulations are a legislative instrument for the purposes of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003.
The Regulations commence on 1 January 2012. The delayed commencement of the Regulations takes into account the transitional arrangements that currently exist for section 86 of the ACL.
Authority: Section 139G of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010
Details of the Competition and Consumer Amendment Regulations 2011 (No. 2)
Regulation 1 - Name of Regulations
This regulation provides that the title of the Regulations is the Competition and Consumer Amendment Regulations 2011 (No. 2).
Regulation 2 - Commencement
This regulation provides that the regulations commence on 1 January 2012.
Regulation 3 - Amendment of Competition and Consumer Regulations 2010
This regulation provides that Schedule 1 amends the Competition and Consumer Regulations 2010 (the Principal Regulations).
The commencement date of 1 January 2012 for the following amendments aligns with the expiration of the transitional arrangements for section 86 of the ACL on 31 December 2011.
Section 86 of the ACL provides that after an unsolicited consumer agreement has been made, a supplier must not supply goods or services to the consumer, or require or accept payment (or other consideration) during a 10 business day cooling off period.
Section 86 of the ACL is currently subject to transitional arrangements that are located in regulation 94 of the Principal Regulations. Regulation 94 saves state and territory unsolicited selling laws that are analogous to section 86 of the ACL that existed before the commencement of the ACL. Regulation 94 provides that dealers or suppliers that complied with the relevant state or territory law are not required to comply with sections 86 and 179 and paragraphs 76(a)(iii) and 173(1)(a)(iii) of the ACL between 1 January 2011 to 31 December 2011. These transitional arrangements expire on 31 December 2011.
Item 1 inserts a new regulation 95 that would allow a supplier under an unsolicited consumer agreement to supply to the consumer under the agreement the goods to be supplied under the agreement (but not any services) during the 10 business day cooling off period only if the total price payable for the goods under the agreement is $500 or less.