AFCA – Save money and business relationships without the need for litigation
AFCA for business disputes
So many businesses are not aware of the various channels available to them where they can resolve disputes without having to spend thousands of dollars.
Small companies spend large sums of money and ruin business relationships to resolve legal conflicts simply because they do not know what’s available to them.
Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, recently unveiled a plan to help small and medium businesses resolve tax disputes with the ATO. The government will soon establish a Small Business Concierge Service within the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman’s Office to provide support and advice about the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) process before an application is made.
The recently formed Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) provide consumers and small businesses with fair, free and independent dispute resolution for financial complaints up to $5 million.
In its first two months in November and December 2018, AFCA has already received 940 small business complaints which were mostly related to lending and credit. It is expected to recruit a specialised small business ombudsman before the end of January to help ensure that each staff member understands what small business priorities are.
According to reports, smaller operators spend an average of $130,000 just to resolve a dispute but it is the cost of ruined relationships that weighed heavily on many of them. Some of them have dropped claims because of concerns about retribution from the other party. There are conciliation processes available to operators to help solve issues without having to escalate the situation but many of them lack awareness of these services.
It is difficult to save relationships once issues reach the courts system and entrepreneurs should be aware that they don’t need to risk ruining their relationships with a company or supplier because they now have other options available to resolve their disputes.
As you look for different ways to grow and improve your business, seeking professional advice from a business consultant could prove to be an important and helpful decision.
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