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Department of the Attorney-General and Justice - NT Consumer Affairs > News and Events
 

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 Posts ‭[2]‬

 
February 20
Extension of Ban on Decorative Alcohol Fuelled Burners in the NT

The sale of these burners were banned by the NT Government on 23 December 2016 for a 60 day period to ensure Territorians were protected from these potentially dangerous goods.
This previous interim ban has now been extended for a further 30 days to allow the Commonwealth to further assess whether these items should be permanently banned nationally.
 
Retailers and online traders based in the Northern Territory must ensure these products remain off shelves and online catalogues and ensure they are not offered for sale. There are tough penalties for selling banned products with individuals facing a maximum fine of $220,000 and corporations facing a maximum fine of $1.1 Million.
 
NT consumers who have an ethanol-fuelled burner in their home should stop using it immediately.
 
In most cases, if these products are determined to be unsafe and are permanently banned, they will be able to be returned to the retailer for a full refund.
 
Reports of ongoing sales of these items or general enquiries should be reported to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission through their Product Safety website at productsafety.gov.au or by phoning 1300 302 502.
 
A copy of the signed ban notice can be found here
 
January 31
Romance Scams

​NT Consumer Affairs is warning consumers to be vigilant when engaging with strangers online around Valentine’s Day.

Data from the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission’s Scamwatch service shows that Australians lost almost $10 million to romance scams in February last year, the highest of any month.

Dating and romance scams are generally quite under-reported, but it is the category with the highest amount of financial loss: more than $24.3 million was lost to romance scammers in 2016.

Most romance scams are carried out via the internet, social networking sites as well as email.

Scammers will groom vulnerable people into trusting them, and will eventually ask for money due to a personal problem, some as a misfortune for which they need financial support.

Follow these tips to help you stay safe from online romance scams:

• Be open to the idea that scammers are prevalent online.

• Be wary of anyone who asks you for money. This could happen within days or years of meeting someone online. Never transfer money via direct deposit, money order or international transfer.

• Do a reverse image search of the person’s profile picture. You can do this through Google images by clicking on the camera icon on the desktop version of the site’s search bar. This can help you identify if the image has been taken from someone else, or belongs to a few people with different names.

• Be careful about the amount of personal information you share. Avoid sharing compromising material, which scammers can use to blackmail you.

• If you agree to meet someone in person, make sure you let your family and friends know where you will be going.


For more information, go to our Romance Scams Fact Sheet.

December 23
Decorative Alchohol Fuelled Burners Banned in the NT

 An interim 60-day product safety ban on alcohol fuelled burners has immediately been put in place in the Northern Territory. This action is the result of more than 100 reported injuries and 115 fire incidents since 2010. The ban only affects portable (or table top) devices that use ethanol liquid or gel fuel and are commonly used for decorative purposes.

To read more on this ban please refer to the media release here

And also to the signed Ban Notice here

December 21
Don't let it get this hot in the Territory this Christmas

Michael McCormack, the Minister for Small Business has issued a draft notice for the imposition of an interim ban on decorative alcohol fuelled burners. These burners typically use ethanol as the fuel source and are used for decorative purposes.

Please be aware that these are very dangerous items which could result in serious injury.

The video clearly shows how volatile they can be:
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-z039Zt7R0

For more information go to the Product Safety Website:
https://www.productsafety.gov.au/

Media Release: http://mfm.ministers.treasury.gov.au/media-release/028-2016/

Proposed Ban Notice: https://www.productsafety.gov.au/system/files/21-12-16%20-Signed%20instrument.pdf

December 15
Watch out for Christmas Con Men

​This Christmas, do business with Santa Clause, not Santa Claws' selling cheap electrical equipment from the back of a van.

More information here

December 09
Indigenous consumers to put out the “not welcome” mat

​On 8 December 2016, Minister Natasha Fyles with the NT Consumer Affairs Commissioner launched the "It's Ok to Walk Away" national Indigenous consumer awareness campaign.

The campaign aims to empower Indigenous consumers to say "no" to nuisance salespeople that knock on their doors or approach them in car parks or shopping centers. A copy of the media release can be viewed on this link http://newsroom.nt.gov.au/mediaRelease/22636

A series of videos have been developed in both English and Yolngu Matha, with a "Do Not Knock" video specifically created for this campaign.  These can be viewed on NT Consumer Affairs YouTube channel through this link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCADr3Kyruhhd52ftuGoi2Kw

 
December 07
Consumers Win Through Cooperation


Collectively Australia's consumer protection agencies saw more than $20 million in compensation and penalties paid in 2015-16.

The Australian Consumer Law (ACL) Interim Progress Report released today by Consumer Affairs Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ) outlines the important work carried out by the national agencies in providing education and enforcement of the ACL. Simon Cohen, the Chair of CAANZ said “the report highlights the great results that can be achieved by cooperation of the agencies across the country”.


To view the report, please click on the link.
http://consumerlaw.gov.au/the-australian-consumer-law/implementation-2/

December 02
Consumers with Disability Education Campaign
To mark the International Day of People with Disability on 3 December, consumer protection agencies have today launched a campaign to educate and empower consumers with disability when they buy goods and services under the new National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
 
Australian Consumer Law (ACL) regulators have produced a series of guides, fact sheets and videos to inform consumers with disability about their rights under the ACL.
More Information here
October 24
TOP TIPS FOR MUSIC FESTIVAL TICKET BUYERS

With the summer music festival season fast approaching, consumer protections agencies are promoting some helpful advice for consumers to avoid joining those left out of pocket by the cancellation of over 45 music festivals across Australia since 2010.

Regulators cannot prevent music festival cancellations or line-up changes, and a certain amount of risk applies when you buy a ticket.  However, you may be able to reduce the risk to you by doing a bit of research and planning ahead.
 
Our top tips

1. Do your research – know your rights.Do your research – know your rights.

2. Buy from a reputable ticket seller – read reviews online and talk to your friends and family.

3. Read the terms and conditions before you purchase tickets to see what you are entitled to.Read the terms and conditions before you purchase tickets to see what you are entitled to.

4. Buy tickets online through a secure website (look for the https:)

5. Like any purchase, keep all related documentation and receipts.Like any purchase, keep all related documentation and receipts.

6. NT consumers often purchase flights and accommodation to attend concerts and music festivals; consider  purchasing travel insurance and ensure you read the terms and conditions to make certain it allows for cancellations.


Under Australian Consumer Law, a business cannot accept payment and then fail to deliver what was promised.  If a festival is cancelled, ticket holders may be entitled to a full refund from the company that sold them the ticket.  Smart strategies include choosing to buy from only reputable ticket sellers, and reading in full the terms and conditions outlined by the seller.
 
Ticket holders should prepare for the unexpected and retain all receipts and relevant information in case a dispute arises and proof of purchase is required at a later date.
 
Credit card users may have the potential to seek a chargeback from their bank if unsuccessful in obtaining a refund from the ticket seller, while PayPal users are able to seek advice from the PayPal Resolution Centre.
 
While significant format changes to an advertised program may result in a refund, simply changing your plans and deciding to no longer attend a music festival does not. 
 
Unfortunately things do go wrong from time to time, but with a bit of preparation ahead of time the level of consumer dissatisfaction can be reduced and a resolution found.
October 17
Interim Report for the ACL Review

Have Your Say!

​The Interim Report for the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) Review has been released on the ACL website and can be found here

There are a number of key areas that the Interim Report focuses on.  These are issues that have been raised by stakeholders and identify potential options for reform.  You can provide your feedback by making either a formal submission or by providing feedback by 9 December 2016. 

More information on the ACL Review can be found here.

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