Following the news that electronics retailer Dick Smith has gone into administration – don’t assume you’ve lost your rights.
Sarah has recently advised us that she purchased a mobile phone from Dick Smith in December. She has since discovered the phone is faulty. Ordinarily, under Australian Consumer Law she should be able to simply return it to the trader and get a replacement phone or a refund if it is a major fault. However, because Dick Smith has gone under administration, this process has become less than clear. After calling the manufacturer to confirm there was a fault, she was advised by it that she is entitled to a replacement phone but she had to go back to Dick Smith and fill out a form to get it. However, when she called Dick Smith its representative said it would not replace the phone because they are under administration and were not able to honour anything. She has therefore had to go back to the manufacturer and is now waiting for a response from it.
But Sarah still has rights even if the trader has gone into administration. For example, she may be entitled to seek damages from the manufacturer of the goods for breaches of the consumer guarantee provisions in the Australian Consumer Law. For more information on you consumer guarantee rights see : https://www.accc.gov.au/consumers/consumer-rights-guarantees/consumer-guarantees
If Dick Smith helped to arrange credit with a third party credit provider for you to purchase a product from it and you are yet to receive the goods or the product is faulty or you have been misled about the product or the terms of the finance, you may have rights against the credit provider. We recommend that you seek legal advice urgently.
If you have concerns about a faulty product that you have recently purchased from Dick Smith, you have purchased a Dick Smith gift card, you have paid for an extended warranty issued by Dick Smith or paid either a deposit or in full for a product that you are yet to receive you can get more information about your rights here: http://www.asic.gov.au/about-asic/media-centre/key-matters/dick-smith-holdings-limited/