NSW Australian Consumer Law on Repairs, Replacements and Refunds?

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Krish1992

Active Member
19 September 2018
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0
31
Sydney
Hello,

I need some explanation regarding Australian consumer law. I bought a smartphone (06-Dec-2017) at a Harvey Norman Store which wasn't working properly for last few months and it is completely shut down with 80% battery. I can't turn it back on now. I tried after charging it again but no luck and I checked the charger as well which is working fine. So the problem is with the phone.

I went to the store and told them the issue, they said they will send it to the manufacturer and it will take minimum 14 days, probably more. I can't buy a new phone for just for that duration and asked them to refund so I can buy a new phone.

Australian Consumer law states
  1. "If the business fails to give you a free repair within a reasonable time or cannot fix your problem, you can: get it done elsewhere and pass on the costs to the business, ask for a replacement, ask for a refund, recover compensation for the drop in value below the price paid"
  2. "When you have a major problem with a product, you have the right to ask for your choice of a replacement or refund"
So what is a reasonable time and also this is a major problem so can I ask for a refund?
 

Rob Legat - SBPL

Lawyer
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16 February 2017
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Your problem will likely lie in the fact that you've had the phone for somewhere in the order of six months before the problem arose. Part of their sending it away will be to determine whether the problem is inherent to the phone or has been caused by something externally done to it - possibly physically, due to the use of the phone, software/apps installed etc. Yes, it's inconvenient, but sending the phone away for testing by the manufacturer is probably the right course of action from an objective viewpoint.

I would recommend otherwise if it was not working properly from the moment you got it.
 

Krish1992

Active Member
19 September 2018
5
0
31
Sydney
Your problem will likely lie in the fact that you've had the phone for somewhere in the order of six months before the problem arose. Part of their sending it away will be to determine whether the problem is inherent to the phone or has been caused by something externally done to it - possibly physically, due to the use of the phone, software/apps installed etc. Yes, it's inconvenient, but sending the phone away for testing by the manufacturer is probably the right course of action from an objective viewpoint.

I would recommend otherwise if it was not working properly from the moment you got it.

What would you consider as 'a reasonable time' for smart phone. I told them I'm happy if it takes 14 days then they said it is minimum and may take more than that. That I don't think is reasonable time. Can I have my phone repaired elsewhere and pass on the costs to them.
 

Rob Legat - SBPL

Lawyer
LawTap Verified
16 February 2017
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Gold Coast, Queensland
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Depending on where it has to go and what tests have to be run, I’d think in the 14 to 28 day range.