Small Business Commissioner fact sheet



On 21 December 2011, David Eaton was appointed as the first Small Business Commissioner for Western Australia. The Commissioner is also the Chief Executive Officer of the Small Business Development Corporation and David Eaton started this role on 17 January 2012.

In 2010, the Western Australian Government decided to establish a Small Business Commissioner.

During 2010-11, the necessary amendments to the Small Business Development Corporation Act 1983, the Commercial Tenancy (Retail Shops) Agreements Act 1985 and the State Administrative Tribunal Act 2004 were passed through both houses of State Parliament, thereby allowing the establishment of the Small Business Commissioner.

  • One of the main functions of the Commissioner, under the amended Small Business Development Corporation Act 1983 is to receive and investigate complaints about unfair market practices affecting small business, and to provide assistance to attempt to resolve those complaints.
  • The intention of this dispute resolution service is to provide a low-cost, non-litigious means of resolving business-to-business and business-to-government disputes, while preserving business relationships.
  • In certain retail tenancy disputes, a party will be unable to take a matter forward to the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) without receiving a certificate from the Commissioner stating that dispute resolution has failed, is unlikely to succeed, or is not recommended under the circumstances. In other unfair market practice disputes, participation in dispute resolution will be entirely voluntary.

The Small Business Development Corporation is an independent statutory authority, and has been the primary provider of advice and guidance for the small business sector in Western Australia since 1984. Learn more about SBDC’s:

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