Dispute Support is an online referral tool that makes it easy to find the most appropriate low cost dispute resolution service to help you resolve your business dispute.

The most appropriate service for your dispute may be our office (the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman), or it may be a specialised or state-based service.

If you have difficulty using the Dispute Support tool, or the tool does not cover your issue, please contact our Assistance Team by calling 1300 650 460 or submitting an online form.

Note: Involving a third party in your dispute, like the ones included in this tool, is Step 4 of the dispute resolution process.  You should complete Steps 1 to 3 before contacting a third party to help you resolve your dispute.

The parties identified in this tool will generally only provide assistance with disputes once you have tried to resolve the dispute yourself.

Find out more about the five steps to dispute resolution.

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Tips for avoiding disputes

Tips for avoiding disputes

  1. Know who you are dealing with. Look behind the business name, check references and meet with them. Ensure the person you are dealing with has the authority to enter into and amend contracts.
  2. Communicate goals and expectations. Make sure your employees know and understand the goals and values of your business and what is expected of them. Make sure they are aware of the scope of their authority to enter into or amend contracts on your behalf.
  3. Put agreed work in writing at the start. Your agreement should outline the goods/services to be provided, any quality and quantity specifications, the price or basis for calculating charges, payment terms, timeframes, delivery terms, etc.
  4. Agree dispute resolution processes. An agreed process, included in your written agreement, will allow for disputes to be dealt with quickly and cost effectively, and you will be more likely to preserve the business relationship.
  5. Get advice before you sign. Don’t rely on what the other party says, a contract is legally binding and you should get professional advice before you sign.  We suggest asking your lawyer to colour-code the rights and responsibilities of each party.
  6. Estimate the costs. Provide a quote. If you charge for services on a time basis make sure you keep a work sheet detailing the time spent and a description of the work done.
  7. Document changes. Write down any agreed changes, such as quantity or timeframes, and attach to the original agreement. At a minimum email the agreed changes to the other party. 
  8. Manage the contract. Once signed, don’t put the contract in the bottom draw and forget about it. Check it regularly to make sure you and the other party are meeting the requirements. If you have any concerns, raise them early.
  9. Get help if you need it. Some jobs are complex or involve large sums of money. Project management for these jobs can be complicated and sometimes risky. If you don’t have strong expertise in project management, consider hiring an expert.
  10. Communicate early and often. Communication must be clear, transparent and frequent to make sure everyone is on the same page. If issues arise address them straight away, don’t leave it to develop into something more serious.

Download a copy of the tips for avoiding disputes.

 

Information on steps to resolve my dispute

The five phases of dispute resolution

There are five phases of dispute resolution – understanding, talking, writing, alternative dispute resolution and court. This tool is primarily focussed on Phase 4 – getting a third party involved. Below is information on each phase of dispute resolution.  

Phase 1 – Understanding my dispute

A good understanding of your dispute will help you to make informed decisions about the best way to try to resolve the dispute.   Consider what led to the issues arising, what had been agreed in the first place and what the key issues really are. Give consideration to what the other party may be thinking and test your position with a trusted advisor.   Learn more about understanding my dispute.  

Phase 2 – Discussing the problem

Now that you understand your dispute it is time to talk about it with the other party. If the issue is minor a telephone conversation may be all that is needed, but for more complex matters an in-person meeting can be more successful.   It is important to prepare for your meeting, completing the steps in Phase 1 is a great place to start. In your meeting stay calm, be professional and be prepared to negotiate and compromise. Be sure to make clear written notes about your discussions and any outcomes which are agreed.   Find out more about discussing the problem.  

Phase 3 – Putting it in writing

If talking about it didn’t work, writing a polite business-like letter is the next step. Putting your concerns in writing provides the other party with a chance to fix the situation before further action is taken and also gives you a document which can be used as evidence if the situation needs to be escalated.   If your dispute is complex or writing isn’t your strong point it may be a good idea to get some help writing this letter.   Get tips for writing a letter and see examples.  

Phase 4 – Getting a third party involved

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is an alternative to going to court to resolve your dispute. ADR is generally quicker and less costly than court and gives you more control over the outcome. Common types on ADR include facilitation, mediation, conciliation and arbitration.   The language used in dispute resolution can be confusing. The National Alternative Dispute Resolution Advisory Council (NADRAC) has a glossary to explain common terms used in dispute resolution in Australia.  

Phase 5 – Taking the matter to court

Taking your dispute to court should be a last resort. Court is expensive, time consuming and the outcome is out of your control.  

Legal assistance

 

Which state or territory is your business based in?
Which state is your retail lease in?
My dispute is with...
What is your dispute about?

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Does your dispute relate to a mortgage over a farm farm debt
Is your business in the building and construction sector?
Retail tenancy disputes in Tasmania
Which state or territory is your business based in?
Which state or territory is your business based in?
Is the party you are recovering money from in the same state as you?
Are you
Are you in

Security of payment laws in the ACT

In the ACT, there are security of payment laws which ensures that a person undertaking construction work in the state is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of good and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for adjudication.

If you have a dispute about payment, you can apply for adjudication to assist you to resolve your dispute by contacting an Authorised Nominating Authority (ANA).

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Show me other available services

Mediation in the ACT Courts

The ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (ACAT), the Magistrates Court and the Supreme Court provide dispute resolution services for civil matters, for example non-payment and debt. Small claims of up to $10,000 are heard by ACAT, claims between $10,000 and $250,000 are dealt with in the Magistrate’s Court and matters over $250,000 are heard in the Supreme Court.

ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (under $10,000)

The ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (ACAT) hears and resolves a wide range of civil disputes and small claims of up to $10,000. The ACAT will also hear requests to review administrative decisions and professional and occupational disciplinary matters.

The ACAT encourages disputing parties to consider alternative dispute resolution, such as mediation, for an affordable and timely solution. If an agreement is not reached, the dispute will then move on to a hearing, where the Tribunal will make a decision that is binding to both parties.

Contact:
p: 02 6207 1740
e: tribunal@act.gov.au
w: www.acat.act.gov.au

 

ACT Magistrates Court ($10,000 to $250,000)

The ACT Magistrates Court hears civil disputes (including commercial and Retail lease disputes) between $10,000 and $250,000. The Magistrates Court may look to alternative dispute resolution to resolve the dispute.

If an agreement cannot be reached, a hearing will then be held. If one of the parties does not agree with the hearing’s outcome, the dispute may then be referred to or appealed in the Supreme Court.

Contact:
p: CourtMCTCivil@act.gov.au
w: www.courts.act.gov.au/magistrates

 

ACT Supremes Court (over $250,000)

The ACT Supreme court hears civil disputes over $250,000.  For disputes of this value, it is highly recommended that you seek independent legal advice.

Contact:
p: 02 6207 1709
e: SCRegistry@act.gov.au
w: www.courts.act.gov.au/supreme

Security of payment laws in NSW

In NSW there are security of payment laws which ensures a person undertaking construction work in NSW is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of goods and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for adjudication.

Under the security of payment law, an application form must be completed and lodged with an Authorised Nominating Authority (ANA) to escalate a claim to adjudication.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

NSW Small Business Commissioner

The Office of the NSW Small Business Commissioner helps small businesses deal with business-to-business disputes and business-to-government disputes. This includes payment, contract, retail and commercial tenancy and other general disputes.

The Commissioner's staff work closely with small businesses that have disputes and provide low cost mediation services; approximately 90% are resolved. If the dispute is not resolved, parties can then have the matter heard by the relevant court or tribunal.

Contact:

Phone: 1300 795 534 or 02 8222 4800
Email: we.assist@smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au
Website: www.smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you require further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Security of payment laws in the Northern Territory

In the Northern Territory, there are security of payment laws which ensures that a person undertaking construction work in the state is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of good and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for a determination for payment.

In the Northern Territory small claims, those under $10,000, are able to be determined through the Community Justice Centre.

For disputes with a value in excess of $10,000, you can apply for you can apply for adjudication to assist you to resolve your dispute by contacting an Authorised Nominating Authority (ANA).

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Northern Territory Community Justice Centre

The Community Justice Centre is a Northern Territory Government service that offers free community mediation at local venues across the Territory for small and civil claims.

Contact:

P: 1800 000 473

E: cjc@nt.gov.au

W: https://nt.gov.au/law/processes/resolving-disputes-without-going-to-court

Northern Territory Community Justice Centre

The Community Justice Centre is a Northern Territory Government service that offers free community mediation at local venues across the Territory for small and civil claims.

Contact:

P: 1800 000 473

E: cjc@nt.gov.au

W: https://nt.gov.au/law/processes/resolving-disputes-without-going-to-court

Security of payment laws in Queensland

In Queensland, there are security of payment laws which ensures a person undertaking construction work in Queensland is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of goods and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for adjudication.

Under the security of payment law, an application form must be completed and lodged with an Authorised Nominating Authority (ANA) to escalate a claim to adjudication. You can apply for adjudication online at the Queensland Building and Construction Commission’s website.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office assists small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You also also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Dispute resolution in the Queensland Courts

Dispute resolution services in Queensland for civil and commercial disputes, such as non-payment, vary depending on the value of the dispute. Disputes under $25,000 are dealt with at the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal, whilst disputes over $25,000 are heard in the Queensland Courts system. 

 

Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (disputes under $25,000)

The Queensland Civil Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) is an independent tribunal which provides accessible, quick and inexpensive dispute resolution services. QCAT makes decisions on a range of matters and can be used to resolve disputes about retail tenancy, debt, consumer, trader, building and minor civil disputes.

Contact:
p: 1300 753 228
e: enquiries@qcat.qld.gov.au
w: www.qcat.qld.gov.au

 

Queensland Courts (disputes over $25,000)

The Queensland Courts system includes the Magistrates Court, District Court and Supreme Court. The Magistrates Court can determine civil claims with a value up to $150,000, the District Court between $150,000 and $750,000 and the Supreme Court over $750,000.

Mediation is available for civil cases at all three levels of the Queensland Courts system and can either be voluntary or court-ordered.

Contact:
w: www.courts.qld.gov.au

South Australian Small Business Commissioner

In South Australia, there are security of payment laws which ensure that a person undertaking construction work in the state is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of goods and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for adjudication.

Under the security of payment law, an application form must be completed and lodged with an Authorised Nominating Authority (ANA) to escalate a claim to adjudication.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

South Australian Small Business Commissioner

The Office of the South Australian Small Business Commissioner provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, payment and debt disputes, farming, motor vehicle industry disputes and fair trading matters.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 072 722 or 08 8303 2026
Email: sasbc@sa.gov.au
Website: www.sasbc.sa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Security of payment laws in Tasmania

In Tasmania, there are security of payment laws which ensures that a person undertaking construction work in the state is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of good and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for a determination for payment.

More information about the process for recovering unpaid invoices in the building and construction industry can be found on Tasmania’s Consumer, Building and Occupational Services website and from the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC), or by phoning the ABCC on 1800 003 338.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

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The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office assists small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You also also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Western Australian Small Business Development Corporation

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The Small Business Development Corporation is an independent authority of the Western Australian Government and provides information and guidance to small businesses on resolving business disputes.

The Corporation provides an alternative dispute resolution service for business-to-business and business-to-government disputes. The service assists small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including contract disputes for the supply of goods and services, intellectual property disputes, trade practices disputes and retail tenancy disputes.

Contact:

Phone: 133 140

Email: info@smallbusiness.wa.gov.au
Website: www.smallbusiness.wa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Security of payment laws in Tasmania

In Tasmania, there are security of payment laws which ensure that a person undertaking construction work in the state is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of goods and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for adjudication.

Under the security of payment law, an application form must be completed and lodged with an Authorised Nominating Authority (ANA) to escalate a claim to adjudication. 

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Security of payment laws in Victoria

In Victoria, there are security of payment laws which ensure that a person undertaking construction work in the state is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of goods and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for adjudication.

Under the security of payment law, an application form must be completed and lodged with an Authorised Nominating Authority (ANA) to escalate a claim to adjudication.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Victorian Small Business Commission

The Victorian Small Business Commission provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, general business disputes, payment and debt disputes, farming and farm credit, and taxi driver and operator issues.

Contact:

Phone: 13 87 22
Email: enquiries@vsbc.vic.gov.au
Website: www.vsbc.vic.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Security of payment laws in Western Australia

In Western Australia, there are security of payment laws which ensure that a person undertaking construction work in the state is entitled to receive, and is able to recover, progress payments for work they carry out under a written or oral construction contract, including the supply of goods and services.

The security of payment laws outline the process for recovering payment, including how to make a claim and, if that is unsuccessful, the process of applying for adjudication.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office assists small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

NSW Small Business Commissioner

The Office of the NSW Small Business Commissioner helps small businesses deal with business-to-business disputes and business-to-government disputes. This includes payment, contract, retail and commercial tenancy and other general disputes.

The Commissioner's staff work closely with small businesses that have disputes and provide low cost mediation services; approximately 90% are resolved. If the dispute is not resolved, parties can then have the matter heard by the relevant court or tribunal.

Contact:

Phone: 1300 795 534 or 02 8222 4800
Email: we.assist@smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au
Website: www.smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you require further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Northern Territory Consumer Affairs

Northern Territory Consumer Affairs provides services to tenants and landlords of commercial properties in the Northern Territory, including helping them resolve disputes.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 019 319
Email: consumer@nt.gov.au
Website: www.consumeraffairs.nt.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you require further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Queensland Small Business Commissioner

The Queensland Small Business Commissioner (QSBC) has been temporarily established under the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act 2020. The (QSBC) provides information and advocacy support to small businesses, and informal resolution and mediation of COVID-19 affected small business leases. Prior to requesting help, the business must have attempted to resolve their lease dispute and have been unsuccessful.

You can contact QSBC by lodging a lease dispute notice

Phone: 1300 312 344

South Australian Small Business Commissioner

The Office of the South Australian Small Business Commissioner provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, payment and debt disputes, farming, motor vehicle industry disputes and fair trading matters.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 072 722 or 08 8303 2026
Email: sasbc@sa.gov.au
Website: www.sasbc.sa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Consumer, Building and Occupational Services

Consumer Affairs and Fair Trading is responsible for retail tenancy matters in Tasmania. If a dispute occurs and it cannot be resolved directly with the other party, you can request the Office of Consumer Affairs and Fair Trading to negotiate a solution.

Contact:

Phone: 1300 654 499
Email: consumer.affairs@justice.tas.gov.au
Website: www.consumer.tas.gov.au/property/retail_tenancy

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office assists small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

In Tasmania, Consumer, Building and Occupational Services (CBOS) can assist with dispute resolution between landlords and retail tenants. CBOS recommends that retail tenants and property owners first attempt to resolve disputes negotiating with each other directly. If unsuccessful, CBOS can assist to negotiate a solution.

CBOS can be contacted by phoning 1300 654 499.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Victorian Small Business Commission

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The Victorian Small Business Commission provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, general business disputes, payment and debt disputes, farming and farm credit, and taxi driver and operator issues.

Contact:

Phone: 13 87 22
Email: enquiries@vsbc.vic.gov.au
Website: www.vsbc.vic.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Show me other available services

Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) provides low cost and independent dispute resolution services for a range of disputes, including retail tenancy.

Before contacting VCAT about a retail tenancy dispute you must raise the matter with the Office of the Victorian Small Business Commissioner.

Contact VCAT:
p: 1800 133 055
e: vcat-civil@justice.vic.gov.au
w: www.vcat.vic.gov.au

Western Australian Small Business Development Corporation

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The Small Business Development Corporation is an independent authority of the Western Australian Government and provides information and guidance to small businesses on resolving business disputes.

The Corporation provides an alternative dispute resolution service for business-to-business and business-to-government disputes. The service assists small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including contract disputes for the supply of goods and services, intellectual property disputes, trade practices disputes and retail tenancy disputes.

Contact:

Phone: 133 140

Email: info@smallbusiness.wa.gov.au
Website: www.smallbusiness.wa.gov.au

 

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

A range of agencies are able to assist small businesses that are subject to unfair contract terms. This includes state and territory-based Fair Trading offices, state small business commissioners, and our office (the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman).

Determining which agency is the best placed to help you is complex and requires an understanding of the relevant laws and the roles of each agency.

Our office is able to examine your matter and either help you directly, or refer your matter over to the best placed agency to help you.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Dispute resolution under the Franchising Code of Conduct

The Franchising Code of Conduct (the Code) is a mandatory industry code that regulates the conduct of parties that participate in franchises. The Code establishes the process for resolving disputes between franchisors and franchisees.

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

The Code requires that franchisors develop internal procedures for handling disputes with franchisees.

This procedure must be set out in the franchise agreement and meet certain minimum standards set by the Code.

The Code also provides a procedure for resolving disputes. If a dispute arises, either party may initiate the complaint handling procedure under the Code, or under the franchise agreement.

The Code requires you to first try to resolve your dispute with the other party by sending a notice of dispute outlining:

  • the nature of the dispute
  • what outcome you want
  • what action will settle the dispute.

If you can’t agree on an outcome within three weeks, either party may refer the matter to mediation (see Step Two below), which involves an informal negotiation between the parties facilitated by an independent third party.

Step Two: Mediation

If the above internal dispute resolution process fails to resolve the dispute, the parties may refer the matter to mediation.

Once mediation is requested, it becomes mandatory for both parties to attend and to genuinely try to resolve the dispute.

This is a cost-effective dispute resolution option for franchisees and franchisors under the Code. Appointed mediators help franchisors and franchisees to resolve their dispute without going to court. Our Assistance Team has a specialist panel of franchise dispute mediators in each state and territory.

Contact:

If you need assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses who are in dispute with their telephone, mobile or internet provider services provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint with the provider’s internal dispute resolution process.

If you have not already lodged a complaint through internal dispute resolution with your service provider, you should contact your provider and ask for information on how to lodge a dispute through this process (you may find this information available on the provider’s website).

Internal dispute resolution service by provider

Step Two: Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman

All businesses which provide or resell telecommunications services to consumers and small businesses must join the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman.

The Ombudsman offers a free dispute resolution service for small business and residential customers who have a complaint about their telephone or internet service provider in Australia.

Before contacting the Ombudsman, you must have attempted to resolve your dispute directly with your service provider (see ‘Step One: Internal Dispute Resolution’ above).

Contact:

Phone: 1800 062 058
Website: www.tio.com.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step Three: Farm Debt Mediation

If you have exhausted all other options, and are at the stage of your bank potentially repossessing your farm, under the Farm Debt Mediation Act 1994, mediation is required before a creditor can take possession of property or other enforcement action under a farm mortgage. The NSW Rural Assistance Authority has accredited a number of experienced mediators as part of its Panel of Mediators. All the accredited mediators have received special training in the Act.

Contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority:

Phone: 1800 678 593 or 02 6391 3000
Email: rural.assist@raa.nsw.gov.au
Website: http://www.raa.nsw.gov.au/fdm

If you need to access a translating and interpreting service please phone 1300 651 500 or visit the Multicultural NSW website.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step Three: Farm Debt Mediation

 If you have exhausted all other options, and are at the stage of your bank potentially repossessing your farm, under the Farm Business Debt Mediation Act 2017, mediation is required before a creditor can take possession of property or other enforcement action under a farm mortgage.

The Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority (QRIDA) are responsible for administering the mediation process. Important information for key participants on the process, guidelines, notices and forms can be found on the QRIDA website. All parties are responsibile for completing all relevant notices to allow mediation to occur.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 623 946
Email: contact_fbdm@qrida.qld.gov.au
Website: https://www.qrida.qld.gov.au/fbdm

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460 (please advise that our Dispute Support tool directed you to contact our office)

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step Three: Farm Debt Mediation

If you have exhausted all other options, the South Australian Farming Industry Dispute Resolution Code (the Code) exists to promote the successful resolution of farming related disputes in a streamlined and defined manner. The Code helps farmers by providing mandatory alternative dispute resolution processes on a no (or low cost) basis overseen by the South Australian Small Business Commissioner.

The Code covers all farmers and primary producers and includes any business of primary production such as the business of agriculture, pasturage, horticulture, viticulture, apiculture, poultry farming, dairy farming, forestry, rearing of livestock, and harvesting of fish and other aquatic organisms. The Code will also deal with business-related disputes between farmers and local or state government.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 072 7220 or 08 8303 2026
Email: sasbc@sa.gov.au
Website: www.sasbc.sa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

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Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step Three: Farm Debt Mediation

If you have exhausted all other options, and are at the stage of your bank potentially repossessing your farm, the Victorian Farm Debt Mediation ACT 2011, makes it compulsory for banks and other creditors to offer mediation to farmers before commencing debt recovery proceedings on farm mortgages.

The scheme is administered by the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR).

Under the Farm Debt Mediation Scheme mediation services are provided by the Victorian Small Business Commissioner.

Contact DEDJTR (for general information on the Farm Debt Mediation Scheme):

Phone: 13 61 86
Website: https://agriculture.vic.gov.au/farm-management/business-management/farm-debt-mediation

Contact the Victorian Small Business Commissioner:

Phone: 13 87 22
Email: enquiries@vsbc.vic.gov.au
Website: www.vsbc.vic.gov.au/who-we-help/farmers/

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

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Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step Three: Farm Debt Mediation

If you have exhausted all other options, and are at the stage of your bank potentially repossessing your farm, the Western Australia Farm Debt Mediation Scheme is available to assist farm and pastoral businesses and financial institutions to resolve disputes about business financial arrangements. The scheme provides an opportunity to address issues and disputes through a low cost and non-legal form of mediation, and encourage a mutually acceptable agreement between the parties.

The professional mediation will be conducted by the Western Australian Small Business Development Corporation.

You can apply for farm debt mediation on the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development website.

Phone: 1800 198 231
Email: rbdu@agric.wa.gov.au
Website: https://www.agric.wa.gov.au/grains/farm-debt-mediation-wa-scheme

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal dispute resolution

Businesses that are in dispute with their bank, insurer or financial service provider should first try to resolve their dispute directly with the provider by lodging a complaint.

If you have not already lodged a complaint with your service provider, you should contact them and ask how to do so (you may find this information on the provider’s website).

Step Two: Australian Financial Complaints Authority

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) is an impartial and independent agency designed to assist consumers and small business reach agreements with financial services on how to resolve their complaints.

Phone: 1800 931 678
Email: info@afca.org.au
Website: www.afca.org.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

Competition, fair trading and consumer affairs regulations in Australia are complex, and a number of different agencies are able to assist with these issues, depending on the nature of the dispute. This includes state and territory-based fair trading offices, state small business commissioners, and our office (the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman).

Determining which agency is the best placed to help you is complex and requires an understanding of the relevant laws and the roles of each agency.

Our office is able to examine your matter and either help you directly, or refer your matter over to the best placed agency to help you.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Postal Industry Ombudsman

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The Postal Industry Ombudsman (PIO) investigates complaints about Australia Post, and some other postal or courier operators. Any complaint to the PIO must be made within 12 months of the action which caused the complaint.

The PIO service is an extension of the Commonwealth Ombudsman. You can make a complaint to the Postal Indsutry Ombudsman by using the online complaints form.

Website: www.ombudsman.gov.au/How-we-can-help/postal-industry-ombudsman

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Show me other available services

South Australian Magistrates Court

The South Australian Magistrates Court can determine civil claims, including contractual and debt disputes, up to $100,000. There is an option of mediation for resolving both minor civil and general claims rather than going to trial.

Phone: 08 8204 2444
Email:  enquiry@courts.sa.gov.au 
Website: www.courts.sa.gov.au

Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Ombudsman

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As a first step, you should try to resolve your dispute directly with the ACT government agency.

If this process fails to achieve an outcome, you can raise your matter with the ACT Ombudsman. The ACT Ombudsman investigates complaints from people who believe they have been treated unfairly by an ACT Government agency.

Depending on the nature of your dispute, our office may take action in your dispute, or we may refer you to the relevant territory ombudsman or other body.

Phone: 1300 362 072
Website: www.ombudsman.act.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

NSW Small Business Commissioner

The Office of the NSW Small Business Commissioner helps small businesses deal with business-to-business disputes and business-to-government disputes. This includes payment, contract, retail and commercial tenancy and other general disputes.

The Commissioner's staff work closely with small businesses in disputes and provide low cost mediation services; approximately 90% are resolved. If the dispute is not resolved, parties can then have the matter heard by the relevant court or tribunal.

Phone: 1300 795 534 or 02 8222 4800
Email: we.assist@smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au
Website: www.smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Northern Territory (NT) Ombudsman

As a first step, you should try to resolve your dispute directly with the NT government agency.

If this process fails to achieve an outcome, you can raise your matter with the NT Ombudsman. The NT Ombudsman investigates complaints from people who believe they have been treated unfairly by an NT Government agency.

Depending on the nature of your dispute, our office may take action in your dispute, or we may refer you to the relevant territory ombudsman or other body.

Phone: 1800 806 380 (land lines only) or 08 8999 1818
Email: nt.ombudsman@nt.gov.au
Website: www.ombudsman.nt.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Queensland Ombudsman

The Queensland Ombudsman investigates complaints about the actions and decisions of Queensland public agencies, including local councils and state government departments.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 068 908
Website: www.ombudsman.qld.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Ombudsman Tasmania

As a first step, you should try to resolve your dispute directly with the Tasmanian government agency.

If this process fails to achieve an outcome, you can raise your matter with the Ombudsman. The  Ombudsman  Tasmania investigates complaints from people who believe they have been treated unfairly by an NT Government agency.

Depending on the nature of your dispute, our office may take action in your dispute, or we may refer you to the relevant territory ombudsman or other body.

Phone: 1800 806 380 (land lines only) or 08 8999 1818
Email: nt.ombudsman@nt.gov.au
Website: www.ombudsman.nt.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Victorian Small Business Commissioner

The Victorian Small Business Commissioner (VSBC) may be able to assist to resolve disputes with your energy, water or gas supplier that are not covered by the Energy and Water Ombudsman. Dispute resolution services are provided at a subsidised rate.

The VSBC promotes a competitive and fair operating environment for small business, and assists by promoting informed decision making, mediating disputes, investigating complaints about unfair market practices, and minimising disputes between small and large businesses.

Contact:
Phone: 13 87 22
Email: enquiries@sbc.vic.gov.au
Website: www.vsbc.vic.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Western Australian Small Business Development Corporation

The Small Business Development Corporation is an independent authority of the Western Australian Government and provides information and guidance to small businesses on resolving business disputes.

The Corporation provides an alternative dispute resolution service for business-to-business and business-to-government disputes. The service assists small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including contract disputes for the supply of goods and services, intellectual property disputes, trade practices disputes and retail tenancy disputes.

Contact:

Phone: 133 140

Email: info@smallbusiness.wa.gov.au
Website: www.smallbusiness.wa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

South Australian Small Business Commissioner

Configure

The Office of the South Australian Small Business Commissioner provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, payment and debt disputes, farming, motor vehicle industry disputes and fair trading matters.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 072 722 or 08 8303 2026
Email: sasbc@sa.gov.au
Website: www.sasbc.sa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

South Australian Small Business Commissioner

Configure

The Office of the South Australian Small Business Commissioner provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, payment and debt disputes, farming, motor vehicle industry disputes and fair trading matters.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 072 722 or 08 8303 2026
Email: sasbc@sa.gov.au
Website: www.sasbc.sa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

South Australian Small Business Commissioner

The Office of the South Australian Small Business Commissioner provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, payment and debt disputes, farming, motor vehicle industry disputes and fair trading matters.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 072 722 or 08 8303 2026
Email: sasbc@sa.gov.au
Website: www.sasbc.sa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

South Australian Small Business Commissioner

The Office of the South Australian Small Business Commissioner provides initial assistance and low cost mediation services for a broad range of business-to-business and business-to-state and local government disputes, including retail tenancy, payment and debt disputes, farming, motor vehicle industry disputes and fair trading matters.

Contact:

Phone: 1800 072 722 or 08 8303 2026
Email: sasbc@sa.gov.au
Website: www.sasbc.sa.gov.au

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460
Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Step One: Internal Dispute Resolution

If you are in dispute with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), the first step is to try and resolve the dispute directly with the ATO. This includes when you have a tax debt and need additional time to pay it, or wish to offer the ATO a deferred payment plan.

Information on the ATO dispute resolution process can be found on the ATO website.

Contact:

Phone: 13 28 66
Website: www.ato.gov.au

Inspector-General of Taxation and Taxation Ombudsman

If you have a complaint or dispute with the ATO and have not been able to resolve the issue directly with them, the Inspector-General of Taxation may be able to help you as a free service.

The Inspector-General and Taxation Ombudsman can help to address concerns or complaints about the administrative actions of the ATO or Tax Practitioners Board. Examples of administrative action include the time it takes to get a response, the conduct of officers, the availability of services, or whether an auditor has considered all the relevant information.

Contact:

Phone: 1300 448 829
Website: https://www.igt.gov.au/make-a-complaint/

Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT)

If you have received a negative decision from the ATO as a result of an objection, audit or an application for a registration (such as an ABN or GST) you may have the right to apply to the AAT for a review of the ATO’s decision.

The Small Business Concierge Service can guide you through your options and assist you by facilitating one hour of specialised legal advice before you decide whether to lodge an appeal with the AAT.

If you do proceed with the AAT, you will access a reduced application fee, dedicated case management and continued support from the ASBFEO.

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

As a first step, you should try to resolve your dispute directly with the Commonwealth government agency.

If this process fails to achieve an outcome, our office (the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman) may be able to help you.

Depending on the nature of your dispute, our office may take on your dispute, or we may refer you to the Commonwealth Ombudsman or other Commonwealth body.

Once you raise your dispute with our office, we will assess your dispute and decide whether it would be best handled by us or a different agency.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Energy and Water Ombudsman Western Australia

The Energy and Water Ombudsman receives, investigates and facilitates the resolution of complaints from residential and small business customers about their electricity or gas provider.

Contact:
Phone: 1800 754 004
Email: energyandwater@ewov.com.au  
Website: www.ombudsman.wa.gov.au/ewowa/

Show me other available services

Refer to the Energy & Water Ombudsman:

The Energy and Water Ombudsman received, investigates, and facilitates the resolution of complaints from residential and small business customers about their electricity, gas or water suppliers.

Contact: Energy and Water Ombudsman Queensland

Phone: 1800 662 837

Website: www.ewoq.com.au

 

Contact: Energy and Water Ombudsman New South Wales

Phone: 1800 246 545

Website: www.ewon.com.au

 

Contact: Energy and Water Ombudsman (Victoria)

Phone: 1800 500 509

Website: www.ewov.com.au

 

Contact: Energy and Water Ombudsman WA

Phone: 1800 754 004

Website: www.energyandwater.ombudsman.wa.gov.au

 

Contact: Energy & Water Ombudsman South Australia

Phone: 1800 665 565

Website: www.ewosa.com.au

 

Contact: Energy Ombudsman Tasmania

Phone: 1800 001 170

Website: www.energyombudsman.tas.gov.au

 

Contact: Ombudsman NT

Phone: 1800 806 380

Email: nt.ombudsman@nt.gov.au

Website: www.ombudsman.nt.gov.au

 

Contact: ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal

Phone: (02) 6207 1740

Email: tribunal@act.gov.au

Website: www.acat.act.gov.au

 

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Contact: Energy and Water Ombudsman WA

Phone: 1800 754 004

Website: www.energyandwater.ombudsman.wa.gov.au

Postal Industry Ombudsman

The Postal Industry Ombudsman (PIO) investigates complaints about Australia Post, and some other postal or courier operators. Any complaint to the PIO must be made within 12 months of the action which caused the complaint.

The PIO service is an extension of the Commonwealth Ombudsman. You can make a complaint to the Postal Indsutry Ombudsman by using the online complaints form.

Website: www.ombudsman.gov.au/How-we-can-help/postal-industry-ombudsman

Where can I get further help?

If you need further assistance with your dispute, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help with your matter. You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman may be able to help you with your dispute.

Our office helps small business operators to resolve complaints and disputes, including disputes with a Commonwealth Government agency, contract and payment disputes and unfair contract term disputes.

You can contact us by submitting an online form, and a case management officer will be in contact with you shortly.

You can also contact us on:

Phone: 1300 650 460

Email: info@asbfeo.gov.au

Disclaimer:

This tool is provided for your convenience only. It is not a substitute for professional advice and does not purport to represent all the options that may be available to you in the event of a dispute. You should seek independent professional advice about these and any other options that may be available to you.

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman and the Commonwealth do not endorse any of the dispute resolution providers referred to in this tool, or warrant the quality of their services. Similarly, the fact that a dispute resolution provider is not referred to in this tool does not necessarily imply any non-endorsement or criticism of that provider.

Links to other web sites are inserted for convenience only. Neither the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman nor the Commonwealth warrants the accuracy of any material contained in those sites. See also www.asbfeo.gov.au/disclaimer

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