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consumer law

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has begun proceedings in the Federal Court against Sony Interactive Entertainment Network Europe Limited (Sony Europe).

 

The complaint relates to limitations on warranty for Sony's online sales of PlayStation products that appear on its website and have been notified to Australian consumers in dealings with them.

It's far, far more complicated than the ACCC suggests and for global retailers it's a major threat.

It might not look much but Australia has just thrown a huge spanner in the works of international internet retailers who want to operate in their market. Whether it sets a precedent remains to be seen but, if so, cheap goods sent from overseas might have to be a lot less cheap. At the heart of this is unproven conduct by Wiggle Limited, a UK company, which the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) found to be in breach of Australian law. This is a significant extra-territorial application of domestic law - and it also interferes with the right to include a choice of law and choice of jurisdiction clauses in international contracts. And as if that's not enough, the ripples reach into call-centre operations worldwide.

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