Small businesses should be given the ability to complain when they are wrongly the subject of demands from industry superannuation funds, according to Council of Small Business Australia (COSBOA) chair, Peter Strong.
Strong used an appearance before the Senate Economics Legislation Committee to complain about instances where small businesses had been subjected to demands from superannuation funds for payment of superannuation guarantee (SG) contributions irrespective of whether a debt existed.
Strong said that such demands were, in the main, emanating from industry funds although some might have also been received from retail funds.
He said the demands represented a substantial problem for small businesses because they were usually accompanied with the threat of legal action which meant they could be both expensive and time-consuming.
Strong said he believed superannuation funds would take much more care in making such demands if small business employers had access to a complaints process.
Strong’s comments came as the Senate Committee used a public hearing to hear evidence with respect to the formation of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) during which the COSBOA chief executive suggested small business needed a voice in external dispute resolution arrangements.