NMI inspectors issue non-compliance notices whenever any breaches of trade measurement law are identified during trader audits.
Enforcement action of a more serious nature is taken when:
- continued non-compliance is detected after a notice has been previously issued
- a breach detected in an initial audit is particularly severe
- contraventions are of high public interest.
Potential enforcement actions include:
- warning letters
- infringement notices with associated fines
- enforceable undertakings
- referral to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (CDPP) for injunction or prosecution.
Any enforcement action, such as a warning letter or infringement notice, may cover more than one breach of trade measurement law.
The value of fines associated with infringement notices is currently $1,050 per offence.
If a matter is dealt with in a Court, the maximum penalty is $210,000 per offence for a company and $42,000 per offence for an individual.
In 2017-18, NMI issued 58 infringement notices with $65,250 in associated fines and referred one matter to the CDPP for consideration of prosecution.
|Year||Non-compliance notice||Warning letter||Infringement notice||Referral to CDPP||Conviction|
As shown in the table below, the most common breach subject to an enforcement action in 2017-18 was short measure in packaged goods. Trading practices breaches include not correctly operating scales and not allowing for the weight of packaging during over-the-counter transactions. As noted above, a single enforcement action may cover more than one breach.
|Enforcement action||Inaccurate measuring instruments||Packaged goods (short measure)||Packaged goods (labelling)||Trading practices|