From tomorrow, small businesses with a complaint about a financial firm can direct their grievances to the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA), the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell said today.
“The AFCA is a single external complaints resolution scheme, replacing the Financial Ombudsman Service, the Credit and Investments Ombudsman and the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal,” Ms Carnell said.
“With Australian Securities and Investments Commission oversight, the AFCA will provide free, fast and binding dispute resolution to small businesses, saving them time and money by significantly reducing the need for litigation.
“It will also possess the expertise to deal with small business lending disputes, significantly improving small business access to justice and providing the forum where the needs of small business are understood.
“Small businesses with fewer than 100 employees will be able to seek resolution of a dispute where the credit facility is up to $5 million.
“Dispute cases could potentially receive compensation of up to $1 million and the compensation cap for agricultural small businesses is up to $2 million.
“The consolidation of the AFCA addresses a key recommendation of our Small Business Loans Inquiry.
“We will monitor the AFCA’s engagement with small business disputes and hope to see a significant reduction in the number of small businesses winding up in court.”31 October 2018For more information, visit www.afca.org.au.