by Tim O’Dwyer M.A., LL.B Queensland Solicitor & Consumer Advocate firstname.lastname@example.org
Queensland’s Beattie Government has changed the law on auctions. It took six years, despite Fair Trading Ministers’ regular boasting about the world’s best real estate consumer protection laws, to realise the wishy-washiness of its Code of Conduct obligation on auctioneers to make their “best endeavours” to identify bidders.
Would you believe, Fair Trading’s Konsumer Kops once found nothing wrong with one contemptuous best endeavour – a sign on the front desk at the auction inviting folk to give their names for a lucky door prize?
Anyhow, auctioneers must now properly identify bidders, confidentially register their names and addresses then give numbered cards or paddles to show during the auction. Trouble is, auctioneers do not have to identify absent persons bidding by telephone or get proof of authority for the persons present to bid this way. Guess how dummy bidders can still rort the auction process?
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