Category Archives: Trade Practices

News Limited v Australian Rugby Football League Ltd [1996] FCA 870 | 4 October 1996

ON 4 OCTOBER 1996, the Federal Court of Australia delivered News Limited & ors v Australian Rugby Football League Ltd & ors; Brisbane Broncos Rugby League Football Club Ltd & ors v Australian Rugby Football League Ltd & ors; Cowboys Rugby League Ltd v the Australian Rugby Football Club Ltd & ors [1996] FCA 870 (4 October 1996).

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/cth/FCA/1996/870.html

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Trade Practices Act turns 40

The ACCC has released a commemorative magazine and video to celebrate 40 years of the Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth), which commenced on 1 October 1974.

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Yorke v Lucas [1985] HCA 65 | 3 October 1985

Yorke v Lucas [1985] HCA 65; (1985) 158 CLR 661 (3 October 1985).

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/cth/high_ct/158clr661.html

The High Court said that although an intention to mislead or deceive is not a requisite element for a contravention of s52 of the Trade Practices Act 1974, the passing on of false information by a corporation is not misleading or deceptive conduct if it is apparent that the corporation is not the source of the information and it disclaims any belief in its truth or falsity.

To be liable for misleading or deceptive conduct, the individual passing on the information must either be an intentional participant, or if not, a participant with knowledge of the essential facts constituting the contravention of s52 (even if he or she does not know that those matters amount to a contravention).

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Coles to publish notice that it broke the law

The Federal Court of Australia today delivered Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Coles Supermarkets Australia Pty Limited (No 2) [2014] FCA 1022 (29 September 2014).

Chief Justice Alsopp declared that Coles Supermarkets Australia Pty Limited had from 1 July 2012 been breached the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) by displaying the words “Baked Today, Sold Today” in circumstances where only some baking of certain products had taken place on the day on which they were offered for sale.

His Honour declared that the representations were false, misleading and deceptive.

It was ordered that Coles display corrective notices on their website and at their premises. Orders were also made to restrain Coles from engaging in similar conduct over the next three years.

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/cth/HCA/2014/11.html

“Free range eggs” $800,000 fine

In Australian Competition and Consumer Commission v Pirovic Enterprises Pty Ltd (No 2) [2014] FCA 1028 (23 September 2014), the Federal Court of Australia declared, by consent, that representations and conduct of Pirovic Enterprises Pty Ltd (Pirovic) promoting their eggs as “free range” was misleading. The company was fined $800,000.

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McIlhenny Co v Blue Yonder Holdings Pty Ltd formerly trading as Tabasco Design & Anor [1997] FCA 962 | 18 September 1997

ON 18 SEPTEMBER 1997, the Federal Court of Australia delivered McIlhenny Co v Blue Yonder Holdings Pty Ltd formerly trading as Tabasco Design & Anor [1997] FCA 962 (18 September 1997).

It is possible for a trademark to refer to another well known trademark, as long as the goods or services are not likely to appear to be connected and there is no likelihood of deception or confusion.

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Trade Practices Commission v Service Station Association Limited [1993] FCA 405 | 26 August 1993

ON 26 AUGUST 1993, the Federal Court of Australia delivered Trade Practices Commission v Service Station Association Limited [1993] FCA 405; (1993) Atpr 41-260 (1993) 116 ALR 643 (1993) 44 FCR 206 (26 August 1993).

Section 45 of the Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) prohibits a corporation from making or giving effect to contracts, arrangements or understandings in restraint of trade. The court held that an arrangement or understanding does not necessarily require an element of mutual commitment but, in practice, reciprocity of obligation would ordinarily be assumed by the other party.

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Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) | Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) | 24 August 1974

ON 24 AUGUST 1974, the Commonwealth Trade Practices Act 1974 was enacted. In 2010 it became the Competition and Consumer Law 2010.

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/caca2010265/

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Australian Knitting Mills Ltd v Grant [1933] HCA 35 | 18 August 1933

ON 18 AUGUST 1933, the High Court of Australia delivered Australian Knitting Mills Ltd v Grant [1933] HCA 35; (1933) 50 CLR 387 (18 August 1933).

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/cth/HCA/1933/35.html

Per Dixon J at 418:

“The condition that goods are of merchantable quality requires that they should be in such an actual state that a buyer fully acquainted with the facts and, therefore, knowing what hidden defects exist and not being limited to their apparent condition would buy them without abatement of the price obtainable for such goods if in reasonably sound order and condition and without special terms.”

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Seven Network Limited v News Limited [2007] FCA 1062 | 27 July 2007

ON 27 JULY 2007, the Federal Court of Australia delivered Seven Network Limited v News Limited [2007] FCA 1062 (27 July 2007).

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/cth/FCA/2007/1062.html

The Seven Network Limited sued News Limited and others, including Foxtel Cable Television Pty Limited and PBL, alleging anti-competitive conduct including breaches of the Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) and the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (Cth).

Seven claimed that the respondents had used anti-competitive conduct to secure the rights to broadcast certain sporting events.

Justice Sackville dismissed the claims.

The judgment is notable for Sackville J’s comments about the case being one of “mega-litigation” heard over 120 sitting days involving: over 85,000 documents comprising over 500,000 pages; submissions of over 1,500 pages; pleadings of over 100,000 pages; and a transcript of over 9,500 pages.

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