Target and Big W breach consumer law

In relation to faulty products.

The ACCC is entering enforceable undertakings with Target and Big W after the two department stores did not accept returns of faulty Sony PlayStations and Dyson appliances, respectively, and admitted that they “may have breached the Australian Consumer Law (ACL)” in doing so.

For Target, this is believed to have occurred between January and August 2017, with customers who complained about faulty Sony PlayStations being told that they had to contact Sony directly for a remedy because the fault had occurred after 30 days from the date of purchase.

Target is now required to publish a notice on its website, asking consumers to contact them if they believe their complaints or concerns were not addressed properly.

Target store in Bourke Street, Melbourne.

Over at Big W, it is believed that between 30 December 2016 and 30 April 2018, customers with faulty Dyson appliances were told that they would need to deal directly with Dyson to obtain a remedy if the complaint was made more than 14 days from the date of purchase.

Big W will also need to publish a notice on its website, inviting consumers to contact them if they have purchased a faulty Dyson appliance.

ACCC commissioner Sarah Court said, “Consumers have a right to ask the business they have purchased a faulty product from for a repair, replacement or even a refund, depending on the seriousness of the fault. Retailers cannot shift their responsibility to manufacturers or set an arbitrary time limit on their obligations under the consumer guarantees.”

Target and Big W have agreed to review and improve their ACL compliance program.

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