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Micro firms make highest business complaints to Australian watchdog

Staff Writer |
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s latest Small Business in Focus report reveals that micro and small businesses made 7,000 complaints and enquiries from July 1 to December 31 2016.

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“Over 60 percent of business contacts were from micro enterprises of four or under employees, which isn’t surprising given that micro firms are the biggest group of businesses in Australia,” ACCC Acting Chair Dr Michael Schaper said.

“In the past six months, the SME sector has been particularly concerned about misleading conduct and false representations with 735 complaints, consumer guarantees issues with 329 complaints, followed by misuse of market power concerns with 95 complaints.”

“Fewer franchisees have been reporting issues to the ACCC since the introduction of the new Franchising Code in January 2015. After an initial spike averaging 52 franchising complaints in the first six months of 2015, complaints have fallen to 32 a month by the end of 2016,” Schaper said.

Unfair contract terms provisions were extended to small business standard form contracts on 12 November 2016. We received 81 contacts about B2B UCT issues.

$1.395 million was reported lost by small businesses to scams, down from $1.606 million in the previous six months.

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