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YOUR SAY: Dispute resolution for small business

Discussion in 'Other discussions' started by Peter - FS Administrator, May 26, 2011.

  1. Peter - FS Administrator

    Peter - FS Administrator Administrator Staff Member

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    Dear Soloists,

    Small Business Minister Senator Nick Sherry has recently released this Options Paper (PDF) inviting commentary on various alternatives for a national business-to-business disputes resolution process that is accessible and low-cost for small businesses.

    We know that a solution to the ongoing problem of business disputes is something that many soloists have been wishing for for a very long time.

    We’d love to hear your views on the options Senator Sherry has tabled for discussion, and will compile your feedback and submit it to the Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research on behalf of the whole Flying Solo community.

    Have your say by reading the Options Paper (PDF), and then adding your comments to this thread.

    Please don’t be shy about expressing your opinion. This is a rare opportunity to really create some change and put an end to soloists getting shafted and having no recourse.

    CONFIDENTIALITY: Please note that all information (including name and address details) published in this thread will be contained in our submission unedited, and will be made available to the public on the Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research website or in future papers. If you would like to comment but prefer to keep your details or opinion confidential, please don't comment here. Instead, follow the instructions on this webpage and submit your comment individually.


    Looking forward to hearing your views,
    Robert, Sam, Peter and Jayne
  2. Paintings for Sale

    Paintings for Sale Member

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    I personally think that option 3 - the national tribunal service will work best. The problem currently is that there are mediation services available in most states, however, if one of the parties doesn’t work to come in and try to work resolve the problem , the mediation obviously fails. So there needs to be a governing body that has the power to influence and make decisions when two parties cannot agree on a resolution.

    In regards to option 4, doesnt COSBOA do that now?
  3. Inner West Counsellor

    Inner West Counsellor Member

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    As a mediator and counsellor, I think it is important that we remember successful dispute resolution does not only involve courts and mediation (sometimes) - great success can be achieved by much earlier interventions if possible, such as premediation coaching or counselling. Often, insights into the underlying values and miscommunication by one or both parties driving the dispute will result in a faster, cheaper and far less crippling resolution.

    Michael
  4. Greg Jackson

    Greg Jackson Member

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    Dispute resolution between states is an expensive nightmare for small businesses, so either option 3 or 4 that work on a national level appeal. But will the resources be available to handle disputes fairly quickly with that 1 in 5 ratio? This is going to be the real test if something is implemented and obviously it needs to be.
  5. 4N_Man

    4N_Man Active Member

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    I think 1 in 5 is a high statistic and shows something needs to be done. I have acted as a mediator in a number of disputes and this is obviously the preferred process as both parties can go away feeling as though they have some success. However, I'm also aware there are times when someone i a position of power just has rule as some people are ignorant/arrogant #&*^%$*'s and cannot be reasoned with. In New Zealand (& other countries) they have the small claims tribunal which works really well - the magistrate can generally work out who is being reasonable and who is being a tosser and rule accordingly. Too many businesses write off small debts because the debtor is a pain int he butt and they know it will take too much time, energy & money to dispute it. The NZ system is accessible, cheap and fast so I'm all for a similar system for both B2B and B2C. Obviously large disputes require more thought and process. Cheers, Grant Dempsey www.4Networking.com.au
  6. The Hobbit

    The Hobbit Active Member

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    I believe option 3 offers the best result for small business, provided it is not nullified by a State law. Further, whichever option is accepted needs to be implemented is such a way that it doesn't become another government maze of red-tape and ridged rules.
    In particular I would like to see a government advocate able to resolve disputes between small business and large corporations. Many corporations today are un-contactable making dispute resolution impossible. For example, try contacting Google, they only have automated telephone, web help or email systems; contact with a human is impossible. Many large corporations reply to complaints with 'no reply' emails blocking further discussion leaving small business with just 'take it or leave it'.
    Small business needs protection from large corporations and often government bodies, as these corporations rely on their overwhelming financial power to bully SME's.

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