Contravening professional diligence
Contravening professional diligence

The following Corporate Crime practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Contravening professional diligence
  • The offence of contravening professional diligence
  • Elements of the offence
  • Mental element required
  • Who must be reckless

The offence of contravening professional diligence

The offence of contravening professional diligence is one of the criminal offences contained in the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (CPUTR 2008). See Consumer protection from unfair trading.. Regulations 3(3) and 8(1) make it an offence to engage in commercial practice that contravenes professional diligence. A commercial practice is unfair if:

  1. it contravenes the requirements of professional diligence, and

  2. it materially distorts or is likely to materially distort the economic behaviour of the average consumer with regard to the product

A trader is guilty of an offence if:

  1. he knowingly or recklessly engages in a commercial practice which contravenes the requirements of professional diligence under regulation 3(3)(a), and

  2. the practice materially distorts or is likely to materially distort the economic behaviour of the average consumer with regard to the product under regulation 3(3)(b)

A trader who engages in a commercial practice without regard to whether the practice contravenes the requirements of professional due diligence is considered to be recklessly engaged in the practice whether or not the trader has reason for believing that the practice might contravene those requirements. The reg 17 due diligence defence is not available to a trader charged under reg 8

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