To run a business in Australia you need to operate fairly and ethically and that means working within the confines of the Trade Practices Act as well as the Fair Trading laws in your respective State and Territory.
The Trade Practices Act is a federal law that deals with almost all parts of the marketplace including unfair market practices, product safety, price monitoring and industry codes of practice. Its aim is to inhibit unethical practices by competitors and to give customers confidence that they are dealing with businesses that adhere to high standards.
The Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) which is responsible for administering the TPA encourages small business to view the Act as an important management tool and that compliance with it should be part of good business practice.
It is suggested that every business have a TPA compliance program. This might include a strategic vision that states your goals and how you plan to implement them, identifying compliance risks and assessing these at regular intervals.
In addition to the TPA, each state and territory has fair trading laws to which you must adhere. The two sets of laws complement each other.
These state it is unlawful to: • take unfair advantage of vulnerable customers – unconscionable conduct. • If you break the Act in your state then you can be prosecuted, face financial penalties and have your bank accounts frozen.
Making sure business behaves in an acceptable manner, whether with your customers or your competitors is vital to a business’ success.
REFERENCE: Info Choice, 2013, viewed 17 October 2013 http://www.infochoice.com.au/small-business/banking-loan/guides/trade-practices-act-and-fair-trading-laws/32846/1/16