EZ Smile Pty Ltd has paid a penalty of $12,600 after the ACCC issued an infringement notice for an alleged false or misleading representation made on EZ Smile’s website in relation to the involvement of Australian orthodontists in its teeth straightening services.
EZ Smile offers teeth straightening services using clear dental aligners, which it sells direct to consumers through its website.
The ACCC alleges that EZ Smile made a false or misleading representation on its website that its teeth straightening treatment plans were supplied by dental professionals, including orthodontists who were registered in Australia, or otherwise subject to Australian health regulation standards, when that was not the case. EZ Smiles’ clear dental aligners are in fact manufactured in China.
The statements on the website included ‘EZ SMILE PTY LTD is an Australian based cosmetic teeth straightening company based in Sydney, Australia’ ‘the orthodontists in our lab will need to take a closer look at your teeth …’ and ‘your aligners are made in our clinical lab by experienced orthodontic professionals’.
“We allege this representation was likely to mislead consumers and limit the extent to which they could make a fully informed decision about using EZ Smile’s services,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.
“This is a relatively new market, and this enforcement action and resulting penalty should serve as a warning to other businesses in this market that it is unacceptable to mislead consumers.”
EZ Smile removed the statements on its website in April 2020.
EZ Smile participates in an emerging market where clear dental aligners are supplied directly to consumers without the requirement for face to face consultation with a dentist or orthodontist.
The payment of a penalty specified in an infringement notice is not an admission of a contravention of the Australian Consumer Law.
The ACCC can issue an infringement notice when it has reasonable grounds to believe a person or business has contravened certain consumer protection laws.