Apple Forced to Change Refund Policy Under Australian Consumer Law

by

applecare_boxApple is being forced to change its refund policy to fit under Australian consumer law after it was found to be lying to consumers about what they were entitled to by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

Apple and its suppliers told Australian consumers they were only entitled to what Apple wanted to offer them when products failed, rather than what they should have been entitled to under Australia's new consumer laws.

Under Australian consumer protection law, Apple is required to provide either a full refund or replacement for products with "major failure" and to offer free repairs, refunds or replacements for products with "minor faults". Apple is also responsible for non-Apple products sold in Australian Apple Stores. Apple's warranty practices and AppleCare packages must offer services in addition to Australian consumer law, rather than replacing them.

Instead, the ACCC found that Apple was telling Australian consumers they were only entitled to a full refund if the product was returned within two weeks rather than the two years under Australian law. Apple was also apparently telling consumers they could only get a full refund or replacement on products within a year of purchase, rather than two years. Finally, Apple was saying it was not responsible for non-Apple products it sold and only offered store credit rather than full refunds or replacements.

In response, Apple will start reassessing all claims about faulty products purchased over the past two years starting on January 6, and will provide customers with new warranty benefits once reviewed. The older claims will take 90 days to review, with the ACCC potentially taking further action if Apple does not follow through. In addition, Apple will publish a note on its website detailing Australian consumer rights, stock ACCC consumer rights brochures in its retail stores, and retrain staff and resellers.

Apple has run into trouble with its warranty practices in the past. In March, Apple adjusted its warranty policies to fit under Australian consumer law as well. Apple has also faced fines over AppleCare practices in Italy and lawsuits from other countries in the European Union.

Top Rated Comments

MrSmith Avatar
91 months ago

This is just another ridiculous example of people wanting something for free. Sad to see so many people agree with this.


I presume you're being ironic. Or just trolling.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
diazj3 Avatar
91 months ago

This is just another ridiculous example of people wanting something for free. Sad to see so many people agree with this.

Seriously? for free?

As a screwed 2008 MacbookPro NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT debacle customer, with my computer failing just one month after they unilaterally closed the repair program in 2012, bricking a 42 month old computer - for which I paid very good money for - because of their incompetence and greed... I agree. I wish more governments would have the balls to truly represent their citizens interests, instead of boosting consumption.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
leman Avatar
91 months ago

IMO any new computer or tablet should last at least 5 years without fault so warranties should reflect this. Its good to see Apple is being 'forced' to change its policy but when I get my iMac just under a year ago I opted for the extended warranty even though under Australian law it's most likely covered for 3 years anyway.


If you don't mind computer prices rising 10-15% to account for the longer warranty, sure ;)
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Lancer Avatar
91 months ago
IMO any new computer or tablet should last at least 5 years without fault so warranties should reflect this. Its good to see Apple is being 'forced' to change its policy but when I get my iMac just under a year ago I opted for the extended warranty even though under Australian law it's most likely covered for 3 years anyway.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MattInOz Avatar
91 months ago

This is just another ridiculous example of people wanting something for free. Sad to see so many people agree with this.


For free no?
I paid good money a product that should last for a reasonably expected life span. For computers and electronics it's been established that should be a minimum two years. ie. most reasonable people expect a computer to last that long before battery, hard drive, screen backlight might be an issue. This is what Australian Law covers and gives consumers confidence buying a product. Apple want to sell here that is our law.

Not to mention they mark up to cover local compliance. So it's not free at all.

If I purchase overseas then it would be for free or I'd be unreasonable to expect coverage beyond standard warranty.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NATO Avatar
91 months ago
If you want to sell products in a given country then you need to abide by the laws there, or choose not to sell your products there. Simple.

Apple were caught out trying to flout the rules and have been reprimanded by the authorities and rightly so.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

2020 apple shopping event

Apple Offering Up to $150 Gift Card With Select Products on Black Friday Through Cyber Monday

Monday November 23, 2020 2:53 am PST by
Apple has announced its annual four-day shopping event, offering customers up to a $150 Apple Store gift card with the purchase of select products between Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the United States. The gift card values in the United States are as follows: $150 for 16-inch MacBook Pro $150 for 21.5-inch iMac $50 for 13-inch MacBook Pro $50 for MacBook Air $50 for iPhone SE,...
0 Deals Hero

Black Friday 2020: Best Apple Deals to Plan For

Saturday November 21, 2020 10:00 am PST by
In the lead-up to Black Friday next week, we've been putting a spotlight on the best deals coming from various retailers like Best Buy and Walmart. In an effort to further prepare our readers for the best Black Friday deals, we're breaking down what we think should be on your radar for Black Friday in 2020. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a...
app store christmas icon

Apple Shutting Down App Store Connect From December 23 to December 27

Monday November 23, 2020 10:14 am PST by
Apple shuts down App Store Connect for a week around the holidays each year in an effort to give App Store staff time off from work. This year, App Store Connect will be unavailable from December 23 to December 27. With App Store Connect unavailable, Apple will not accept new apps or app updates, so all pricing changes and new app submissions need to be locked in before those dates for...
Target November Deals 1

Black Friday Spotlight: Target Begins Week-Long Sale With Deals on iPhone 12, Powerbeats Pro, and More

Monday November 23, 2020 8:07 am PST by
We've been tracking early Black Friday deals in our dedicated Black Friday Roundup, and in an effort to prepare our readers for the big shopping event we're highlighting sales store-by-store in the lead-up to November 27. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Target. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running....
ipad pro 2020 display

Black Friday Week Kicks Off With Up to $150 Savings on 2020 iPad Pro

Sunday November 22, 2020 2:37 pm PST by
As we head into Black Friday week, we're seeing some of the best deals of the season so far, with Amazon and Best Buy today discounting the latest iPad Pro models by up to $150 at the lowest prices we've ever tracked on these models. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep ...
mac mini macbook pro macbook air

Apple M1 Hands-On Comparison: MacBook Air vs. MacBook Pro vs. Mac Mini

Monday November 23, 2020 3:40 pm PST by
Apple's M1 Macs are out in the wild now, but ahead of the holidays, you might still be trying to figure out which one to pick up, either for yourself or as a gift for someone else. We've got all three of the new Macs available, so we thought we'd give MacRumors readers a hands-on overview of each machine in our latest YouTube video. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. ...
macos big sur m1 macs restore issue

Apple Provides Instructions to Fix macOS Reinstallation Errors on M1 Macs

Sunday November 22, 2020 3:30 pm PST by
Shortly after the launch of Apple's new M1 Macs, we saw reports that attempts to restore and reinstall macOS on those machines right away could result in an installation error that would leave your Mac non-functional. Specifically, the error message would read: "An error occurred preparing the update. Failed to personalize the software update. Please try again." Over the weekend, Apple p...
max tech xcode benchmark m1 macbook

Video Demos Performance Differences Between 8GB and 16GB Apple M1 MacBook Pro

Monday November 23, 2020 2:54 pm PST by
All of the M1 Mac models use the same M1 chip, so the upgrade options are limited to SSD storage space and RAM. We haven't seen many comparisons that demonstrate the difference between a machine with 8GB RAM and the upgraded 16GB RAM option, but Max Tech today shared a video highlighting the performance between an 8GB MacBook Pro and a 16GB MacBook Pro. The video includes a series of...
iPhone 6s main

Rumor Claims iOS 15 to Drop Support for iPhone 6s and Original iPhone SE

Sunday November 22, 2020 9:25 am PST by
Apple will drop support for the iPhone SE, iPhone 6s, and iPhone 6s Plus in next year's release of iOS 15, according to a rumor shared today by Israeli site The Verifier. If the rumor is accurate, that would mean iOS 15 will be compatible with the following Apple devices: 2021 iPhone series iPhone 12 Pro Max iPhone 12 Pro iPhone 12 mini iPhone 12 iPhone 11 iPhone 11 Pro iPhone 11 Pro ...
new mac mini logicpro screen

M1 Macs Able to Run Up to Six External Displays Using DisplayLink

Tuesday November 24, 2020 6:53 am PST by
It is possible to run up to six external displays from the M1 Mac mini, and five external displays from the M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, with the aid of DisplayPort adapters, according to YouTuber Ruslan Tulupov. This far exceeds Apple's specified limits on external displays with the M1 Macs. Apple's host of new M1 Macs are not capable of supporting as many external displays as their...