Consumer Affairs Victoria took action against The Good Guys Discount Warehouses Pty Ltd (ACN: 004 880 657) and Parke Muir's Pty Ltd (ACN: 092 974 797) in the Federal Court of Australia, alleging that the companies engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct and made false or misleading representations to consumers about their rights under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) when marketing extended warranties sold by the companies.
Consumers Affairs Victoria alleged that:
- salespeople at five The Good Guys stores made inaccurate statements about the position consumers would be in if a product failed or was faulty after the expiry of the manufacturer's warranty, and
- the companies did not refer to the consumer guarantees in the ACL.
Our inspectors gathered evidence by 'mystery shopping' at the five stores, and by making covert audio recordings of their interactions with salespeople. The companies alleged that this evidence was obtained improperly or illegally and therefore was not admissable in court. The judge ruled that the evidence was not obtained improperly or illegally, and was therefore admissable.
However, the court found that the salespeople did not engage in the ACL contraventions we alleged, and dismissed the case.