More Victorian small businesses are receiving the help they need to resolve disputes, with the Victorian Small Business Commission assisting a record 2074 owners and operators in 2018-2019.
The commission is also handling 10 per cent more new disputes compared with a year earlier ─ attributable to increased awareness around owners’ and tenants’ rights and the avenues available to lodge disputes.
The most common disputes were on unpaid invoices (36.7 per cent), retail leases (20.8 per cent), repairs and maintenance (17.1 per cent) and contracts (16.3 per cent).
Despite seeing an increased number of disputes, the commission has had to mediate fewer of them, with more being resolved at an earlier stage through professional advice and support.
Some 82 per cent of cases that did reach mediation were resolved successfully with the parties involved indicating their satisfaction with the outcome.
The Victorian Small Business Commission is a statutory authority established to provide low-cost dispute resolution services for small businesses in Victoria.