Misleading Product Promotion Leads Federal Court to Order Significant Fines
It pays for businesses to get advice from lawyers and be careful with the way they promote their goods and services. In the case of ACCC versus Reebok Australia in 2015, the Federal Court gave Reebok Australia a fine of $350,000. They were found as having falsely advertised their footwear in Australia. In addition to these fines, there were also restraining orders issued, an order to correct the advertising, and $45,000 in legal costs. This was paid to the ACCC. Of particular interest is the fact that Reebok’s parent company, Reebok International, had already been dealt with for similar conduct in the United States.
The Federal Trade Commission, which fills a similar role to the ACCC in Australia, investigated the issue of false advertising and dealt with it accordingly. Reebok Australia was fully aware of the problem with false advertising, but did nothing to bring the practice to a stop, as far as the Federal Court viewed the matter.