The Business Herald’s markets and banking reporter.

F&P Appliances faces legal action in Australia

Fisher and Paykel appliances factory in East Tamaki.
Fisher and Paykel appliances factory in East Tamaki.

Australia's consumer watchdog has filed legal proceedings against Fisher & Paykel Appliances and another company over allegedly misleading statements about extended warranties on products.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said the New Zealand whiteware maker and Domestic & General, a warranty services firm, had sent letters to customers containing misleading statements about consumers' statutory rights, including that they would not be protected against repair costs after the expiry of a manufacturer's warranty unless an extended warranty had been purchased.

"Shoppers should realise that under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) they may have a right to a repair, replacement or refund beyond the time period covered by the manufacturer's warranty," said ACCC chairman Rod Sims. "While some extended warranties may offer protection over and above that provided by the ACL, they do not replace the underlying consumer guarantees."

The ACCC said its proceedings also included allegations that the extended warranty plan offered by F&P Appliances and Domestic & General may constitute a financial service.

F&P Appliances couldn't be reached for comment.

- NZ Herald

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