As apps such as Uber, Airbnb and Airtasker become more popular, Victorians are being reminded about their rights under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) when it comes to the sharing economy.
The sharing economy connects consumers to people who have products to sell, hire or lease via an online platform and includes services such as ride sharing, home sharing and skill sharing.
Only about one thir d of people who currently buy products and services through such platforms realise they are protected by the ACL in the same way as they when they buy from a physical store.
Consumer Affairs Victoria is taking part in a new national campaign to educate consumers and businesses about their rights and responsibilities, as these platforms are emerging and expanding quickly.
If things go wrong, you can follow these steps to resolve the issue: speak to the seller or service provider, contact the platform through their internal dispute resolution process, if they have one, write a factual customer review and rate the business on the platform and lodge a complaint with Consumer Affairs Victoria, if trying to resolve the problem directly with the business does not work.
“It is important everyone plays their role to make the sharing economy fair, and follows the AustralianConsumer Law,” Mr Cohen said.