“Protect, Promote, Provide”

Small Cost,
Big Benefits

All News

ATO exposed again! Systemic mistreatment of small business people

Monday, April 29, 2019

It doesn’t seem to stop. The ATO continues to deny that it does anything wrong, but official reviews and reports keep slamming the ATO. We listed in early April this year the string of parliamentary and other reports calling for urgent reform of the ATO.

This time it’s the Small Business Ombudsman reporting on the ATO’s enforcing debt even while the debt is being challenged in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. The report finds that the ATO does this on 12 per cent of occasions. This destroys the small business and their ability to challenge the alleged debt. The Ombudsman severely criticizes the ATO and calls for legislative reform.  More...


ATO – Mongrel Bunch of Bastards – one year on

Tuesday, April 09, 2019

It is one year to the day since the Four Corners show ‘Mongrel Bunch of Bastards’ was aired. This ABC production exposed the ATO’s mistreatment of small business people. Watch the show here.  It continues to be relevant.

So, what has happened in 12 months? More...


Watch out! Here comes a cascade of thanks. Major ATO reform for the self-employed seems to be here

Monday, March 25, 2019

Okay, get ready for it. In this update we’re going to praise a lot of people.

The reason is that it’s looking as though the sort of reform we need from the ATO in its treatment of small business people is actually happening. See this article in today’s Australian.

It's all to do with this document released on the ATO’s website last Friday (22 March). Frankly, we’re surprised how far this is developing. We’ll explain this in detail tomorrow with the key being the operation of the Small Business Tax Tribunal.  More...


Official government report confirms ATO has big problems

Sunday, July 22, 2018

The ATO has suffered another major hit to its reputation, this time (and again) from an official government investigation.

You may remember that following the Four Corners show ‘Mongrel Bunch of Bastards’ which exposed ATO abuse of small business people, the Minister, Kelly O’Dwyer, ordered a Treasury inquiry. Both the Small Business Ombudsman and the Inspector-General of Taxation (IGT)  were asked to participate.  More...


Banks forced to change small business contracts. A huge win for fairness!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

We’re mighty proud of the work we did, over close to a decade, to achieve the 2015 unfair contract laws protecting small business people. Here’s the tracking of our campaign from 2009. And it’s pretty fair to say that, without us, the laws would not have come into existence.

In that long struggle the banks consistently opposed the unfair contract laws. During that campaign one bank, NAB, was found by the courts to have engaged in ‘misleading and deceptive conduct’ in relation to a business mortgage. In our view NAB’s bank officers arguably behaved as they did because NAB’s small business finance contracts seemingly gave them unfair power. More...


Some big wins! More to come? Let’s hope so!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

A few update issues:

Competition law reform. Success!
We reported to you last Sunday on why the ‘effects test’ Bill is opposed by Labor. It’s simple: Follow the money. Coles pays the shoppies’ union who pays the Labor Party. Coles opposes the Bill. Labor opposes the Bill. Well, on Wednesday, the Misuse of Market Power Bill (Effects test) passed Parliament. Here’s the Senate debate  (watch from about 12.52). Labor opposed. The Greens supported the Bill along with other independent Senators. Well done to them in ensuring a fairer deal for small business people and competition! More...


We’ve changed our name! But we’re still the same—only getting stronger

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Well here’s a turn-up for us! In 2000 (goodness, 18 years ago!) we formed Independent Contractors Australia to advocate for the rights of self-employed people. And in that time we’ve been more successful than we could have envisaged. More...


Big end of town to pay on time! Or are they?

Saturday, June 03, 2017

It looks like truly good news. The ‘big end of town’, through the Business Council of Australia, last week launched a new small business ‘pay on time’ code. That is, big businesses signing up to the code have agreed to pay small business suppliers on time. And the Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBA) has endorsed the code.

Let’s be clear. It appears that BCA has moved on the code because the Victorian government has implemented one, the Federal Small Business Ombudsman, Kate Carnell, has been pushing for one and the ‘big end of town’ doesn’t want to see legislation forcing them on this.   More...


Like naughty schoolchildren, banks now complying with unfair contract laws

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Readers might recall our news alert headline, “we’ll only do what we’re made to do!” This was a senior counsel from one of the banks responding to our efforts about eight years ago asking them to support the unfair contract laws.

Then in March this year we said that NAB was trashing its own small business brand because it had, in our view, lied about changing its small business contracts to comply with the now operational unfair contract laws.  More...


‘We’ll only do what we’re made to do!’ says bank’s legal counsel

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Around 8 years ago, we (ICA) were approaching the banks about supporting the introduction of unfair contract laws for small business people. One of the big bank’s chief legal counsel said to us “We’ll only do what we’re made to do!” What a sad attitude. But, unfortunately, in our dealings with many at the ‘big end of town’, that’s our experience with them.

Unfair contract protections
It took us ten years of hard advocacy, but late last year the small business unfair contract laws took effect. Now the change is happening. In The Australian yesterday Robert Gottliebsen detailed how the ACCC has forced Sensis to fix unfair contract clauses. Sensis had concealed clauses that renewed contracts without the small businessperson agreeing. Sensis could cancel contracts but the small businessperson could not. Sensis has agreed to make refunds.  More...



Recent Posts





Be Protected!


You can become a Protected Member

Only $40 a month (plus GST)

You receive:
Tax Investigation Support
Unfair Contract help


Member benefits info here
Join as a Protected Member
here

 


Tags


Archive