Unconscionable Conduct under the ACL
Under the ACL people who are the victims of unconscionable conduct, by a business, are able to take legal action in accordance with Section 21.
There are a large number of factors which can help the courts decide if an agreement to purchase goods, or services, is unconscionable.
These factors are set out in Section 22 of the ACL, they include but are not limited to:
- The bargaining positions of both of the parties;
- Whether the terms of the agreement were reasonably necessary in the circumstances;
- Whether the customer could understand any documents involved in the transaction;
- Whether unfair tactics were used against the customer;
- Whether unfair pressure was used against the customer;
- The cost of getting equivalent goods and services from someone other than the supplier;
- Whether the supplier’s conduct was similar in other deals of the same nature;
- Any relevant industry code;
- Whether the supplier failed to disclose conduct that was detrimental to the customer’s interests;
- If there was a contract which underpinned the agreement the extent to which its terms were the subject of negotiation.
If you believe you have been the victim of an unconscionable agreement you should seek legal advice.
Unconscionable conduct can also be reported to the ACCC.