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Hard to believe: ICA is opposing the Unfair Contracts Bill

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Since 2010 ICA has campaigned hard for the unfair contract protections available to consumers to be extended to small business people. The Abbott Coalition promised to do this when in opposition and again repeated the promise on winning government.

The Bill is now in Parliament. Yet we’re opposing it! It’s been sent to a Senate Committee for review. Here’s our detailed submission to the Committee.

Our grounds for opposition? There’s been a simple ‘trick’ inserted into the Bill: the protections against unfair contracts are limited to contracts under $100,000.

That means that the people who will miss out on the protections are:
  • most IT contractors and all consultants.
  • massive numbers of owner-drivers
  • small retailers trying to bulk buy goods
  • family farmers try to sell bulk products.
  • and many more.
The Coalition didn’t promise to protect some small business people some of the time! It’s a sell-out to big business and government bureaucracy who oppose small business protections. The government’s stated excuse for doing this is irrational.

We are hugely disappointed. The restriction is so bad that the Bill needs to be rejected. We’re hoping the Senate Committee will recommend the removal of the $100,000 limit. There should be no limit.


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