Frequently asked questions

Can you help me?

Please call us on 1300 795 534 or email us at to discuss your situation and what we might be able to do.

We will do what we can for every small business. We don't define 'small business' because we'd never want to exclude a small business needing help because it fell just outside a standard definition.

I'm thinking about starting a small business. Where do I start?

The best place to start any business is with proper planning and the right business, financial and legal advice.

Our Business Connect program will connect you with an experienced business advisor who will give you personalised guidance face-to-face. You’ll get vital advice and key business skills at the most crucial time. The business guidance is extremely affordable thanks to a NSW Government subsidy. And it’s available in your local area (just put your postcode into the Find an advisor tool).

You should consider seeing a solicitor and accountant to make sure your business is properly setup to meet its legal and financial obligations.

Getting good advice early could save you serious expense and time down the track.

Before you enter into a contract

Entering into a contract is a serious decision and it is important to seek advice from various sources. If you agree to personally guarantee the business your personal assets are at risk if you want to break the contract.

  • Call our Dispute Resolution Unit on 1300 795 534 for free confidential assistance before signing important contracts
  • Get legal advice from a lawyer, they can help you understand your obligations and liability before you enter the contract
  • Speak with a Business Connect advisor.

I run a small business and need some help

Our Business Connect program will put you in touch with an experienced business advisor who can give you personalised guidance face-to-face. You'll get vital advice and learn key business skills at the most crucial time for your business. The business guidance is very affordable thanks to a NSW Government subsidy. And it's available in your local area (just put your postcode into the 'Find an advisor' tool).

You can also call the Commonwealth Government's Small Business Support Line on 1800 777 275.

What can I do if I have a problem (or might have one soon) with another business, council or government agency?

The first thing you should do is call one of our mediation officers on 1300 795 534 to talk about your situation. You can also email us at, however small business issues can be complicated and it’s often easier and faster to talk about them on the phone than by email.

If you need it, we provide low cost dispute resolution services. We here to help all parties find a solution before the matter ends up in the courts. It doesn’t matter if both parties are small businesses or one is a bigger business or a government department or agency. We are completely neutral. Our job is to help all parties find the best solution for everyone involved.

I'm flat out coping with the day-to-day reality of my business - how am I supposed to manage compliance, on top of everything else?

You’re not alone. Many small businesses say that compliance and increasing regulation are significant burdens. Working with government agencies to make improvements is one of our priorities.

You can help us to help you by letting us know of compliance or regulation issues you think are excessive and that are negatively affecting your business. Please call us on 1300 795 534 or email us at

Tendering for NSW Government contracts is too complicated and takes too long for small business - what are you doing about that?

We are working with government agencies to try to improve opportunities for small business to work with government.

If you would like to raise any issues about the NSW Government procurement process, we want to hear from you. Please call us on 1300 795 534 or email us at

How does the Commissioner make a difference to my business?

For the first time small businesses in NSW have a dedicated Commissioner to represent them.

The NSW Small Business Commissioner's role is to:

  • represent small businesses within government and to help resolve issues at the earliest possible opportunity
  • help close information gaps and stand up for businesses where there is systemic unfair treatment of a group
  • help small businesses to navigate government
  • work with government agencies to help them better engage with small businesses

To achieve these goals, we offer a number of services. These include:

If you need help with a dispute or would like to make us aware of an issue you are experiencing with government, contact us on 1300 795 534 or email