The Trade Practices Amendment (Clarity in Pricing) Act
2008 commences on 25 May 2009. If you supply goods and services to
personal consumers (rather than to other businesses) you will need
to comply with the new law when you make price representations to
The new law requires that from 25 May 2009, you must give the
price for your goods or services as a single all-inclusive
figure (including GST).
Included in that single price must be all amounts that are
quantifiable at the time the price representation is made,
any charges payable by the customer to your business (other
than charges payable at the customer's option);
Example: if customers can only pay by credit card, and your
business imposes a compulsory credit card fee, this must be
incorporated into a single price (saying 'fees and charges
apply' will not be sufficient to comply)
any taxes, duties, fees, levies or charges imposed on your
business in relation to the supply (e.g. GST but not stamp
Example: if you previously advertised your product as $99 +
GST, you must now advertise it as "$108.90"
fees, levies or charges if that amount is payable under an
" agreement or arrangement under legislation and would have
otherwise been payable by the customer.
If you previously used component pricing in your advertising to
comply with disclosing the full cash price, you can continue to do
so as long as you also display the single price in a manner at
least as prominent as the components of the price.
If your business delivers goods, and the minimum delivery charge
is known (but this may vary depending on delivery requirements),
you must also specify the minimum delivery charge (however the
delivery charge does not need to be included in the single
To ensure your business is compliant from 25 May 2009, you
review your current pricing representations in standard form
contracts, websites, emails etc to ensure they will comply;
review all current advertising including TV, print, online,
mail and radio that will be in circulation on/from 25 May 2009 (the
new law applies to prices stated orally, so rethink the wording,
volume and timing of your price points);
review your business practices to ensure your business units
know what amounts are quantifiable and required to be included in
the "single price";
ensure your marketing and administrative teams have the
necessary information on changes in taxes, duties, and other fees
which will be required in the "single price" to comply
with the new law when preparing brochures, ads and other
ensure you withdraw non-compliant collateral from circulation
prior to 25 May 2009 and replace it with collateral reflecting the
new pricing requirements;
and don't forget your other obligations under the Trade
Practices Act 1974 still continue to apply (e.g. misleading
and deceptive conduct is prohibited under s 52 of the Act).
If your business does not adhere to the "single price"
requirements, then from 25 May 2009 your corporation will have
committed a strict liability offence and may face fines up to $1.1
Swaab was recently named a 2009 Winner in the
ALB Employer of Choice awards, and was winner 'Best Law Firm in
Australia (Revenue < $20m)' and 'Attribute Award for
Exceptional Service (Australia Wide)'
in the 2008 BRW- Client Choice Awards.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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In some cases these fees or surcharges are higher than what a bank charges to these merchants for use of the system.
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