Commissioner's Blog: Have your say on laws affecting WA’s motor vehicle industry
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With Acting Commissioner for Consumer Protection Gary Newcombe...
Consumer Protection is seeking feedback on various options for changes to the laws regulating the buying, selling and repair of motor vehicles in Western Australia.
These laws impact consumers who buy motor vehicles (including cars, caravans, camper vans and motor cycles) from dealers, as well as consumers who have any of these vehicles repaired.
With more than two million motor vehicles registered in WA, a lot of people are affected. More than 13% of the written complaints received by Consumer Protection in the 2014-15 financial year related to motor vehicle dealing or repairing. That’s around 1,600 matters conciliated or investigated, in addition to compliance initiatives and formal prosecutions. A further 13,000 motor vehicle industry related calls were received by our 1300 30 40 54 advice line during the year.
Any potential law changes will also affect people working in the motor vehicle industry such as dealers, salespeople and repairers. The State Government must balance providing appropriate protections for consumers while, at the same time, ensuring the motor vehicle industry remains viable.
The review provides a vital opportunity to look at ways of improving the legislation, removing unnecessary regulation and reducing red tape for business. In the process, consumers should still get the highest standard of quality and service possible because purchasing and maintaining a motor vehicle accounts for a substantial portion of the household budget.
Examples of key issues considered in the consultation paper include:
- Licensing of motor vehicle sales staff.
- Categories of motor vehicle dealer licensing.
- Cooling off periods for motor vehicle purchases.
- Types of repair work covered by motor vehicle repairers’ legislation.
I encourage consumers and anyone involved in the industry to have their say through a consultation paper released on Friday 6 November 2015 and available online at www.commerce.wa.gov.au/consultations.
The release of this consultation paper represents the second stage of review of WA’s motor vehicle industry laws. The first stage of the review saw 33 written submissions and more than 600 survey responses from industry participants and consumers. Responses to this paper will assist the State Government in deciding whether changes are needed and if there is sufficient support for reform. Submissions close on Friday, 18 December 2015. Enquiries can be made by emailing email@example.com or calling 1300 30 40 54.
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