Feeds

HP prosecuted by Australian consumer regulator

Tough warranty conditions alleged to mislead and deceive punters

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), the nation's guardian of consumer rights and regulator of competition and consumer law, has commenced legal action against HP over its warranty and repair practices.

The ACCC is upset with HP for five reasons, namely:

  • The remedies available for a faulty HP product were limited to remedies available from HP at its sole discretion;
  • Consumers must have had a faulty HP product repaired multiple times by HP before they were entitled to receive a replacement;
  • The warranty period for HP products was limited to a specified express warranty period;
  • Following the expiration of an express warranty period, HP would repair faulty HP products on the condition that consumers pay for such repairs
  • Consumers could not return or exchange HP products purchased from the HP Online Store, unless otherwise agreed by HP at its sole discretion.

Those actions, the ACCC believes, are in contravention of the Australian Consumer Law's provisions that insist businesses tell the truth about their warranty obligations and consumers' rights to receive replacement products. The ACCC has wide powers and is wielding several against HP, with its statement about the case saying it will seek several remedies, including:

  • Declarations;
  • Injunctions;
  • Civil pecuniary penalties;
  • Disclosure orders;
  • Adverse publicity orders;
  • Non-party redress for consumers affected by HP’s conduct;
  • The implementation of a compliance program; and
  • Costs.

If the ACCC wins the case, which will kick off on December 7th, HP will therefore have to pay damages, take out ads apologising for its conduct and get its house in order regarding warranties and how they are communicated to punters.

The case will be heard in Australia's Federal Court, the lowest court that hears matters pertaining to laws made by the Parliament of Australia. Appeal is possible to the Full Bench of the Court and then, under limited circumstances, to the High Court.

HP told The Reg, in a canned statement sent by a spokesperson, that “HP takes seriously the matters raised by the ACCC and will fully investigate and respond appropriately.” ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more
Oh yeah ... and a 30% cut for Amazon to seal the deal
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off
Cellphone baseband device biz shuttered
Feel free to BONK on the TUBE, says Transport for London
Plus: Almost NOBODY uses pay-by-bonk on buses - Visa
Nintend-OH NO! Sorry, Mario – your profits are in another castle
Red-hatted mascot, red-colored logo, red-stained finance books
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.