Fair Trading Act 1989 - Queensland


The purpose of the Act is to improve consumer well-being through consumer empowerment and protection, fostering effective competition and enabling the confident participation of consumers in markets in which both consumers and suppliers trade fairly.

The Act regulates consumer trader transactions and the supply of goods and services in Queensland and sets out provisions relating to:

  • general trade practices, including specific prohibitions against misleading, deceptive or unconscionable conduct and false or misleading representation;
  • unsolicited goods and services;
  • unfair contract terms;
  • statutory consumer guarantees;
  • lay by sales;
  • itemised billing;
  • unsolicited consumer agreements; and
  • the prescription through regulation of particular codes of practice for fair dealing.

The Act further provides for the making of mandatory information and safety standards relating to specific goods and services.

The Fair Trading Act adopts the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) which is a uniform national law enforced by the Commonwealth and the States and Territories.

For many purposes the provisions of the Fair Trading Act apply to all persons and are not limited to a defined class of consumers. However, for some purposes, provisions apply with respect to a defined class of consumer on the basis that it is not appropriate to extend the protection afforded by the relevant provision more broadly.

The definition of a consumer is relevant to the following provisions in the ACL:

  • statutory consumer guarantees;
  • unsolicited consumer agreements;
  • lay-by sales agreements;
  • the provision of itemised bills;
  • the definition of continuing credit contracts;
  • linked credit contracts.

Service type

Regulatory Obligation

An obligation defined in law. A business must comply with relevant services.

Lodgement process


Authorised inspectors have powers to monitor and enforce compliance with the Act, including entry and search of premises and seizure of property related to a suspected breach of the Act.

Fines may be imposed by a court for offences against the Act. The regulator may approach the court to seek an order that a civil pecuniary penalty be paid. The court may also issue an injunction or make other orders providing redress or compensation. The regulator can issue infringement notices for some provisions of the Act.

Appeal process


Where goods have been seized on the basis that they are banned under the Act, the person claiming to be entitled to the goods may apply to a Magistrate to have them released to him or her.

Complaints or concerns about any investigation should be referred in writing to the Executive Manager of the relevant branch of the Office of Fair Trading, i.e. Investigations Branch.

Administering agency

Department of Justice and Attorney-General

Office of Fair Trading

Fair Trading Operations

Contact details

Contact Email, Phone and Address Details for this service in simple two column table format, header then data.

Please use these contact details for help or more information:

Queensland Government Service Centre

Fair Trading Operations

Office of Fair Trading

Department of Justice and Attorney-General

Operating address: Upper Plaza Terrace
33 Charlotte Street
Brisbane, Queensland 4000
Mailing address: GPO Box 3111
Brisbane, Queensland 4001
Phone: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)
Fax: 07 3008 5946
Website: Office of Fair Trading (Opens in new window)