BIS have responded briefly to the recent consultation about the role of the Small Business Commissioner, to help with disputes between small and larger businesses, particularly as to late payment of invoices.
The response is quite unsatisfactory in that it appears short on detail as to how the system will work, but the Government will create a Small Business Commissioner to take on a ‘signposting’ role – and rather than the Commission itself offering a mediation service, the Commissioner will instead give information about other ADR providers in the market.
Until we see the detail it is difficult to say how signposting to mediation will help with late payment of debts, but it signals further confidence in ADR and mediation in particular to resolve b2b disputes at the same time as businesses are being steered towards ADR processes instead of litigation in the field of consumer disputes and complaints about lawyers. We are certainly seeing a surge of interest in our ADR certified scheme in the run up to 1 October 2015. The phone is constantly ringing with enquiries about our solicitors’ complaints service in particular.Disclaimer: The information and any commentary on the law contained in this article is for information purposes only. No responsibility for the accuracy and correctness of the information and commentary or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by the author. The information and commentary does not, and is not intended to amount to legal advice to any person on a specific case or matter. The article was written on the date shown and may not represent the law as it stands subsequently. For the avoidance of doubt, the views in this article are personal to the author and not attributable to any other individual or organisation.