Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


New Consumer Law clarifies – and confuses

Media Release 11 December 2013

New Consumer Law clarifies – and confuses

Parliament’s passing of the Consumer Law Reform Bill yesterday finally brings consistency and transparency to consumer rights – though some big issues remain, Motor Trade Association (MTA) says.

The ‘gestation period’ for this Bill has been long and protracted – it has passed through the hands of two governments and many Ministers. The motor industry has had opportunity to comment on the content of the Bill and it now looks forward to implementing it.

“The general thrust of the Bill is positive overall, with big improvements for consumers, in particular. Most provisions are well defined and clear. Industry will need to establish some new processes and controls to ensure compliance with the new provisions,” MTA spokesperson Tony Everett says.

However, a few provisions will be more difficult to interpret, and both consumers and industry will be looking for clarification on how these work. A good example of this is the requirement for disclosure when selling extended warranties (a product common in the used vehicle industry). Under the new Bill, dealers must define any extra protections over and above those provided under the Consumer Guarantees Act (CGA).

“The difficulty with this is that the CGA terms of coverage are not defined in absolute terms anywhere. It will be interesting to see how this new requirement ‘beds-in’,” Everett says.

Another difficult-to-understand issue is the requirement for traders to only identify themselves as a trader when selling online via an auction process (where the consumer can effectively push a button and buy the good), but not if they are selling via other means, such as a list advertisement requiring further engagement between customer and seller.

“Consumer rights turn on whether or not the seller is a trader. It would seem logical that traders should declare their position irrespective of the selling mechanism,” he says.

Nevertheless, MTA is pleased to see increased enforcement powers for the Commerce Commission – “a move that should enable more efficient and cost effective control of errant behaviour, when and where it occurs,” Everett says.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Power Outages, Roads Close: Easter Storm Moving Down Country

The NZ Transport Agency says storm conditions at the start of the Easter break are making driving hazardous in Auckland and Northland and it advises people extreme care is needed on the regions’ state highways and roads... More>>


Houses (& Tobacco) Lead Inflation: CPI Up 0.3% In March Quarter

The consumers price index (CPI) rose 0.3 percent in the March 2014 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. Higher tobacco and housing prices were partly countered by seasonally cheaper international air fares, vegetables, and package holidays. More>>


Notoriously Reliable Predictions: Budget To Show Rise In Full-Time Income To 2018: English

This year’s Budget will forecast wage increases through to 2018 amounting to a $10,500 a year increase in average full time earnings over six years to $62,200 a year, says Finance Minister Bill English in a speech urging voters not to “put all of this at risk” by changing the government. More>>


Prices Up, Volume Down: March NZ House Sales Drop 10% As Loan Curbs Bite

New Zealand house sales dropped 10 percent in March from a year earlier as the Reserve Bank’s restrictions on low-equity mortgages continue to weigh on sales of cheaper property. More>>


Scoop Business: Chorus To Appeal Copper Pricing Judgment

Chorus will appeal a High Court ruling upholding the Commerce Commission’s determination setting the regulated prices on the telecommunications network operator’s copper lines. More>>



Cars: Precautionary Recalls Announced For Toyota Vehicles

Toyota advises that a number of its New Zealand vehicles are affected by a series of precautionary global recalls. Toyota New Zealand General Manager Customer Services Spencer Morris stressed that the recalls are precautionary. More>>


'Gardening Club': Air Freight Cartel Nets Almost $12 Million In Penalties

The High Court in Auckland has today ordered Swiss company Kuehne + Nagel International AG to pay a penalty of $3.1 million plus costs for breaches of the Commerce Act. Kuehne + Nagel’s penalty brings the total penalties ordered in this case to $11.95 million ... More>>


Crown Accounts: Revenue Below Projections

Core Crown tax revenue has increased by $1.9 billion (or 5.0%) compared to the same time last year. However this was $1.1 billion less than expected and is reflected across most tax types, continuing the pattern of recent months. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Computer Power Plus
Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news