Misleading and deceptive conduct remains a focus for the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
The latest biannual report, Small business in focus, reveals data on the latest business and franchising complaints.
ACCC deputychair Dr Michael Schaper said “Over the last six months, the ACCC received almost 5,000 complaints from small businesses. Concerns about misleading conduct remain the biggest issue for small businesses.
“Conduct resulting in substantial small business detriment has been a priority for the ACCC and we want to make it clear that this type of conduct is unacceptable.”
In regard to Franchising Code issues, the ACCC had two fewer complaints (75) about disclosure in 2015 than in 2014, and 26 complaints about termination of agreement, the same number as the previous year.
Nine franchisors were audited for compliance with the Code.
Recent actions included the Electrodry Carpet Cleaning franchisor ordered to pay penalties of $215,000.
The report also outlines the ACCC’s initiatives to help business owners understand their rights and responsibilities under the new business-to-business unfair contract terms protections.
A free interactive webinar The new business-to-business unfair contract terms law: what you need to know and do now’ is being held on 16 March.