The Franchising Code of Conduct sets out a clear process for the resolution of disputes between a franchisor and a franchisee.

If you have a concern with your franchisor or franchisee you can:

  • formally raise your concerns with them, including through the dispute resolution process in your franchise agreement and under the Franchising Code
  • contact the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) or a Small Business Commissioner (if available in your state or territory) for help
  • get independent advice on your rights from a lawyer, accountant, business adviser and industry association

The Franchising Code states that parties must act in good faith. This means parties must act honestly, and not arbitrarily, with each other and cooperate to resolve the dispute.

How can the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) help you?

If you’re in a franchising dispute, ASBFEO can help you access low-cost alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mechanisms such as mediation as outlined in the Franchising Code.

Accessing alternative dispute resolution can be way to resolve disputes in a fair, timely and cost effective manner for both parties.

Time and length of ADR mechanisms depends on the complexity of your matter.

ASBFEO can provide free support, including:

  • information on the Franchising Code of Conduct
  • options to resolve your dispute
  • access to mediation services located across Australia

Learn more about the support ASBFEO can provide.

Whistleblower protections

Whistleblowers can help identify and call out misconduct and harm to consumers and the community. To encourage whistleblowers to come forward with their concerns and protect them when they do, the Corporations Act 2001 (Corporations Act) gives certain people legal rights and protections as whistleblowers. On 1 July 2019, the Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing Whistleblower Protections) Act 2019 came into effect and includes protections for franchisees and employees reporting a breach of an industry code.

Learn more about whistleblower rights and protections including how to report.