Valve and the ACCC head back to Federal Court in August


Valve and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will head back to the Federal Court of NSW this August.

Valve was found guilty of breaching Australian Consumer Law back in August 2016 due to its lack of refund policy.

“The Federal Court’s decision reinforces that foreign based businesses selling goods and/or services to Australian consumers can be subject to Australian Consumer Law obligations, including the consumer guarantees,” Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) Chairman Rod Sims said at the time. “In this case, Valve is a US company operating mainly outside Australia, but, in making representations to Australian consumers, the Federal Court has found that Valve engaged in conduct in Australia.”

Valve was ordered to pay $3 million USD in penalties in December 2016. Valve appealed the decision in February of this year, while the ACCC filed a cross-appeal a month later in March 2017.

The ACCC’s cross-appeal centres around a ruling that statements made by Valve in online chats to consumers were not misleading, partly because those consumers validly asserted their rights under Australian Consumer Law.

“If a consumer knows their rights and asserts them in making a complaint, the Australian Consumer Law should not allow a business to make misleading claims in the hope of deterring the consumer from claiming a remedy,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said in March.

“All goods supplied to consumers come with automatic consumer guarantees that they are of acceptable quality and fit for the purpose for which they were sold, even if the business is based overseas.”

We’ll let you know how August’s hearing goes.