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ACCC is now targeting unfair contract terms

Eva Pettifor . 31 Mar 2017 . Comments
ACCC is now targeting unfair contract terms

Ensuring small businesses receive protection under the new unfair contract terms law is a priority for us in 2017.

Our Deputy Chair, Dr Michael Schaper has warned that the ACCC will be taking enforcement action against a number of companies across a range of industries over business-to-business unfair contract terms this year.

As a small business, you may be required to enter into standard form contracts with other businesses for goods and services. The Australian Consumer Law now prohibits unfair contract terms in most of these contracts.

We have seen providers (typically larger businesses) continue to put potentially unfair clauses in their agreements, including those that give them:

  • an unreasonable ability to cancel or end an agreement
  • potentially broad and unreasonable powers to protect themselves against loss or damage
  • the ability to unilaterally change the terms of the contract
  • an unreasonable ability to limit or prevent small businesses from exiting their contracts

We’re also investigating complaints about payment terms in small business standard form contracts and unfair commercial practices that have the effect of delaying payment times for suppliers.

If you come across an unfair term in a standard form contract that you have been offered or entered into you can report it to our Infocentre

For more information please see the media release and the ACCC website.

ACCC

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