In light of the review of the PPS Act that is currently underway, we seek your input on how the PPS regime has impacted on your business so that we can better represent the interests of SMEs in the review process.

Objectives & Impact of the PPS Act

The commencement of the PPS Act has required Australian businesses to make significant changes to their business practices.  Consumers, creditors, financiers, insolvency practitioners, accountants and lawyers have also all had to come to terms with this new and very different system of regulating secured finance in Australia.

The PPS Act’s key objectives are to:

  1. increase consistency and certainty
  2. reduce complexity and cost, and
  3. enhance the ability of businesses and consumers to use their assets as security, to improve their ability to access cost-effective finance.

However, many of our clients and colleagues have expressed frustration and confusion over the operation and effect of the PPS regime and would likely question whether any of these objectives have been achieved at all.  

Review Announced

These same clients and colleagues are, therefore, likely to welcome the recently announced comprehensive review of the PPS Act as it should provide an opportunity to assess the effectiveness of the Act and, hopefully, bring about much needed changes to the day to day operation of the regime.

The review’s terms of reference includes the consideration of:

  1. the effects of the PPS Act on Australian businesses and consumers, and on the market for business and consumer finance,
  2. levels of awareness and understanding of the PPS Act amongst business, and
  3. opportunities for minimising regulatory and administrative burdens and creating further efficiencies in the PPS Act regime.

Of interest to many of our clients is that the terms of reference provide for particular attention to be paid to the experiences of small businesses, with feedback being sought on:

  1. the effect of the PPS Act on small business;
  2. the ways in which small business understands and engages with the PPS regime; and
  3. opportunities for reducing the cost of working with and utilising the regime.

Submissions dealing with the following issues are encouraged:

  1. whether the PPS Act has achieved clear and appropriate outcomes for small business, and
  2. ways in which the language of the PPS Act can be simplified without compromising desirable policy objectives.

Harwood Andrews’ Involvement in the Review Process

Harwood Andrews Business Law Principal, Joanne D’Andrea, is a member of a Working Group that will put forward a submission as a part of the review of the PPS Act.  Having assisted many of our clients come to terms with the PPS regime over the past few years, Joanne is very much aware of the difficulties, confusion and expense this regime has caused many SMEs.

We welcome our clients’ comments on this regime so that we can best address the interests of SMEs in the review process.  Please email Joanne on jdandrea@harwoodandrews.com.au if you have any queries in relation to the PPS regime or if you would like to comment on how it has affected your business.