The Government is consulting on Part A of the Consumer Safeguards Review. Part A will consider the existing model for consumer redress and complaints handling and proposals to improve outcomes for consumers.

How it works

Why we want your input
We are seeking your views to help us develop the next generation of consumer safeguards for the future telecommunications environment.
How you can voice your opinion
You can have your say by reading the discussion paper. We welcome written submissions from stakeholders by 5:00pm AEST on Friday, 3 August 2018.
What will be the outcome of this consultation?
Your feedback will inform Part A of the Review's report and associated recommendations. We will consult on Parts B and C of the Review shortly, and will report to Government by the end of 2018.

Consultation Information

Consultation tabs

The Issue
Consultation Period: 
July 05, 2018 09:00 AEST to August 03, 2018 17:00 AEST

The consumer safeguards we have in place today were mostly designed around fixed-line voice services delivered over the existing copper telephone network. We are reviewing these protections to prepare the framework for the services Australians will use into the future.

On 17 April 2018, the Minister for Communications, Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield, announced Terms of Reference for the Consumer Safeguards Review. The Review is being conducted in three parts.

We are currently consulting on Part A of the Review, Consumer Redress and Complaints Handling. On 5 July 2018, the Minister released a discussion paper to guide feedback. You can view the consultation paper and background and supporting documents in the Relevant Documentation section below.

The proposals in the paper build on the Australian Communications and Media Authority’s (ACMA) Complaints Handling Standard and Record Keeping Rules and relate to three core areas:

  • Telecommunications providers must have and maintain complaint handling policies in compliance with the governing rules
  • An External Dispute Resolution Body, independent of industry, should be established to deal with complex complaints that are unable to be resolved directly between customers and their providers
  • Responsibility for collection, analysis and publication of data relating to industry performance and complaints should be transferred to the ACMA.

Discussion papers for Part B of the Review (reliability of services) and Part C (choice and fairness) will follow shortly. More information is available on the Consumer Safeguards Review page.

If you want to discuss the Part A discussion paper or have any queries about the Review process, you can consumersafeguardsreview [at] communications.gov.au (subject: Consumer%20Safeguards%20Review%20consultation%20%E2%80%93%20Part%20A) (email the Review team).

Submissions will be accepted until 5:00pm on Friday, 3 August 2018 via email: consumersafeguardsreview [at] communications.gov.au or post:

Consumer Safeguards Review
Department of Communications and the Arts
GPO Box 2154
CANBERRA ACT 2601

Consumer Safeguard Review Infographic. Part A—Consumer redress and complaints handling. Part B—Reliability of services. Part CChoice and Fairness. Part A is highlighted to show that this is the current consultation.

Relevant Documentation

Discussion paper—Part A—Redress and Complaints Handling

Published 5th Jul 2018

Download PDF (581.36 KB) Download DOC (339.51 KB)
Part A: Consumer Redress and Complaints Handling. The PDF version of this document may not meet WCAG 2.0 accessibility requirements. If you would like an accessible PDF version, please email the Review Team at consumersafeguardsreview@communications.gov.au.

Companion paper—Current telecommunications safeguards and regulatory environment

Published 5th Jul 2018

Download PDF (109.84 KB) Download DOC (93.11 KB)
Background information to assist stakeholder consideration of issues canvassed in proposals. The Word version of this document may not meet WCAG 2.0 accessibility requirements. If you would like an accessible Word version, please email the Review Team at consumersafeguardsreview@communications.gov.au.

Companion paper—International and sectoral comparisons of redress and complaints handling models for consumers and small businesses

Published 5th Jul 2018

Download PDF (556.32 KB) Download DOC (135.02 KB)
Background information to assist stakeholder consideration of issues canvassed in proposals. The Word version of this document may not meet WCAG 2.0 accessibility requirements. If you would like an accessible Word version, please email the Review Team at consumersafeguardsreview@communications.gov.au.

Participate

Started July 05, 2018 09:00 AEST
Ended August 03, 2018 17:00 AEST
Days Remaining 0 of 29
Submissions now public

Formal Submission

Formal submissions have been made public.

These documents have not been produced by us and may not meet WCAG 2.0 Level AA requirements. Please contact us at consumersafeguardsreview [at] communications.gov.au to obtain alternative copies.

The following formal submissions have been made public.

Australian and New Zealand Ombudsman Association

Australian Communications and Media Authority

Australian Communications Consumer Action Network

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

Bruce Bebbington

Communications Alliance

Communications Alliance - Australian Communications Consumer Action Network

Community Legal Centres Queensland

Consumers’ Federation of Australia