The ARC has welcomed the latest BIS consultation which seeks to give SMEs further means of addressing ‘Grossly Unfair Terms’. To this end representative bodies would be given the power to challenge terms and practices which are perceived unfair in the courts.

The consultation acknowledges that by further adapting existing provisions and affording representative bodies this power, a body of case law will be built up proving clarification as to what terms and practices are unfair.

The ARC acknowledges that these measures to support SME businesses are aimed at improving commercial operations, but notes that it remains the case in the recruitment sector that RPO imposed ‘pay-when-paid’ provisions (which, it is widely accepted, hinder a level playing-field) will continue to be included in contracts until such time as a representative body challenges them under the proposed regime or are otherwise challenged or outlawed.

ARC members can access the consultation in the members’ area on the website and are invited to contribute any comments before the consultation closes on 7 December 2015.