Under the Australian Consumer Law, certain consumer guarantees automatically apply.
If a product does not match the description, sample or demonstration model, the consumer is entitled to have the issue fixed.
The type of outcome depends on whether the problem is major or minor. If the consumer is shown a sample or demonstration model and given a description of the product, the product must match both.
A supplier or manufacturer cannot argue that the consumer inspected the product before purchase and should have picked up any errors in the description. This guarantee does not apply to products bought at auction where the auctioneer acts on the seller’s behalf.
Products sold relying on a sample or demonstration model must not have any hidden defects.
A hidden defect is a problem that would:
- make the product unacceptable in quality, and
- not be noticeable to someone looking at the product.
The guarantee that products will match any sample or demonstration model applies even if the differences are unavoidable. This is provided the differences are major.
Time to compare
The consumer must be given reasonable time to compare the product with the sample. This does not apply to demonstration models.
This page has been produced and published by the Consumer Building and Occupational Services Division of the Department of Justice. Although every care has been taken in production, no responsibility is accepted for the accuracy, completeness, or relevance to the user's purpose of the information. Those using it for whatever purpose are advised to verify it with the relevant government department, local government body or other source and to obtain any appropriate professional advice. The Crown, its officers, employees and agents do not accept liability however arising, including liability for negligence, for any loss resulting from the use of or reliance upon the information and/or reliance on its availability at any time.