Consumer alerts

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Occassionally Consumer Protection publishes alerts warning consumers about certain traders.  We also use this page update consumer about any further legal action against these traders after the alert. 

You can keep up to date on consumer alerts by liking us on Facebook or following us on Twitter

Port View Restaurant

Consumers who may be out of pocket after the closure of the Marine Terrace, Geraldton restaurant to come forward and lodge a complaint.  At this stage we are not aware of a liquidator being appointed but, in the meantime, we would like to hear from anyone who has an unused gift voucher or has paid a deposit for future functions, so that we can make a realistic assessment of the total number of consumers who may be affected and the amount of money they claim to be owed.

Australian Specialty Tours Pty Ltd

Licensed travel agent Australian Specialty Tours Pty Ltd (ACN: 113 519234) has recently gone into liquidation with PCI Partners appointed as liquidator. PCI Partners have contacted all known creditors, 70 consumers mostly from Victoria and 47 businesses across the country. 

If you are affected by closure of Australian Specialty Tours you can: 

  • lodge a claim with the Travel Compensation Fund (if the booking was paid for before 1 July 2014),
  • request a credit card chargeback from your financial institution,
  • make a claim against any travel insurance; or
  • register with PCI Partners as an unsecured creditor.

Affected customers can also check their travel bookings with the individual service providers (for example, hotels, tour companies, airlines) to:

  • confirm the status of bookings
  • establish what payments have been made. Ask the company to send you any relevant paperwork, such as receipts.

If you paid by credit card but this payment has not transferred to the service provider, immediately contact your financial institution for a chargeback. This effectively reverses the credit card charge, and is similar to a refund.

Consumers who paid by cash, or are waiting for a chargeback to be processed, can register with the administrator or liquidator as an unsecured creditor.

You should also contact your travel insurance company (or credit card provider, if your card includes insurance) to determine whether you have an insurance claim.

If you have additional bookings made independently of the travel agency, such as car hire, check the terms and conditions to establish any cancellation process and cost. If you are cancelling or deferring your travel, contact the provider to see if you can receive a credit for the unused services or come to another arrangement.

For more information on insolvency and how to claim from an insolvent company, view our Insolvency page.

Paul Stewart or Solid Timber Furniture

7 January 2014  Consumer Protection has issued an alert concerning Perth furniture maker Paul Stewart, trading as Solid Timber Furniture (deregistered), formerly of Naval Base and Port Kennedy.

Mr Stewart has taken substantial deposits from numerous consumers totalling more than $22,000 and has failed to fulfil the orders for furniture which was advertised on Gumtree as well as his own website.

Consumers who have had recent dealings with Mr Stewart or Solid Timber Furniture should contact Consumer Protection by email consumer@dmirs.wa.gov.au or call 1300 304 054.

Volkswagen recall

11th June 2013 Volkswagen have voluntarily recalled over 25,000 vehicles fitted with 7-speed DSG gearbox (DQ200) including Golf, Jetta, Polo, Passat and Caddy which were produced between June 2008 and September 2011. More information available from ACCC's product recall website

Samsung top loader washing machines

30 April 2013 Electrical safety recall of Samsung top loader washing machines(150,000 sold across Australia). More details including model numbers at the ACCC's Product Safety Recalls website.

Black salve

9 April 2013 WA Health warned cancer patients against using Black Salve as an alternative cancer treatment.

The warning follows a WA Health investigation, which found some Western Australian retailers were promoting it as a treatment for cancer, whilst illegally selling and labelling the dangerous substance as 'termite repellent'.

Unleash Solar Pty Ltd

Update 4 October 2016 - Solar company and director ordered to pay $535,000 penalty (Unleash Solar Pty Ltd / Dionysios Perdikoyiannis)

UPDATE 14 March 2013 Further to our consumer alert on 27 February about Unleash Solar being placed into voluntary administration, consumers who have not previously been in contact with Consumer Protection should lodge their enquiries concerning installation, consumer guarantees, consequential loss etc. directly with the administrators and register as unsecured creditors.

Updated contact details have been given by the administrators.

Mr Austin Taylor and Mr Anthony James
Meertens Chartered Accountants
Level 10, GHD House, 69 Grenfell St, Adelaide, SA, 5000.
Phone: (08) 8418 8900
Fax: (08) 8232 5077

Consumers whose inverters were made by a particular Chinese manufacturer and failed under warranty may be able to obtain a more immediate remedy from that Chinese manufacturer via their office in Victoria.

This option only applies to the particular Chinese manufacturer named below along with the specified series and model numbers of approved grid-connect inverters:

Jiangsu Zeversolar New Energy Company Limited (China)
Series – Eversolar – Model Numbers – TL1500AS, TL2000AS, TL3200, TL3200AS, TL4600, TL4600AS, TL5400 and TL5400AS
Series – Eversol – Model Numbers – TLC12K and TLC17K
If you have an inverter made by this manufacturer, with the listed series and model numbers you can contact Zeversolar and they are prepared to supply and install a replacement inverter under warranty (like for like) at no cost to the consumer, including those in WA.

Australia Zeversolar New Energy Pty Ltd
Unit 1, 125 Highbury Road, Burwood Victoria 3125
Phone: (03) 9808 0885

27 February 2013 Unleash Solar Pty Ltd (trading as Unleash Solar) has been placed into voluntary administration.

The information has come from Consumer and Business Services (CBS) in South Australia where the solar system installation company is based.

Austin Taylor and Tony Jones from Meertens in Adelaide have been appointed administrators for Unleash Solar.  Contact details are available on their website.

Consumers who have outstanding claims with Unleash Solar should contact the administrators for assistance.

Since August 2012 Consumer Protection has received 19 complaints from WA customers in regard to Unleash Solar and 16 of those remain unresolved. The complaints are about workmanship issues around due care and skill as well as faulty inverters on solar panel systems. CBS has 40 similar complaints.

Consumer Protection will liaise with CBS who are working with the administrators to resolve consumer complaints with the aim of getting faulty equipment replaced or refunds issued.

22 December 2011: enforceable undertaking with Unleash Solar

The Commissioner for Consumer Protection today entered into an enforceable undertaking with Unleash Solar Pty Ltd. Consumer Protection's contact centre had been receiving enquiries from consumers concerned about extended delays in the installation of solar voltaic systems . The company concerned has now undertaken to address these outstanding consumer issues. More information on: Australian Consumer Law and your rights when purchasing goods and services.

Fay Marie Armstrong

27 November 2012: A backyard dog dealer has been permanently banned from keeping more than one dog and fined a total of $34,000 after being convicted of 17 animal cruelty charges brought by Consumer Protection in the Perth Magistrates Court today. Read full media statement.

28 August 2012: Fay Marie Armstrong (pictured right) of Spearwood is a backyard dog breeder who has been ordered by the Supreme Court to stop selling diseased animals e.g. puppies with parvovirus. Any animal which she sells must be vet-checked and vaccinated.

Small high powered magnets 
(BuckyBalls, Neocubes and Neodymium Sphere Magnets) 

14 Nov 2012: Commonwealth ban registered.

22 October 2012: Extended interim ban notice approved by Commerce Minister Simon O’Brien.

23 August 2012: Interim ban for WA approved by Commerce Minister Simon O’Brien.

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