under section 44

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Section 44 of the OIL CODE provides:

The parties must attempt to agree about how to resolve the dispute and may agree to refer the matter to a person to provide mediation or other assistance.

The Oil Code provides this special dispute resolution procedure that applies to disputes arising under Part 2 and Part 3.


Relates to the sale of a declared petroleum product:
(a) by a wholesale supplier;
(b) to a person engaged in the business of retailing or wholesaling declared petroleum products.


Relates to:
(a) a fuel re‑selling agreement
(b) any other retail activities that are
– covered by a fuel re‑selling agreement;
– undertaken by a retailer for a supplier on a retail site to which a fuel re‑selling agreement between the supplier and the retailer applies.

But not a supplier reasonably believes that the amount of motor fuel that will be sold will be less than 30,000 litres each month.


Oil Dispute Resolver

Derek Minus is the Oil Code Dispute Resolver.
He can help to resolve your Oil dispute NOW.

As the former Commonwealth government Dispute Resolution Adviser he assisted suppliers, retailers and franchise partners in the oil industry resolve their disputes.

As a barrister, accredited mediator and chartered arbitrator, he knows how the Oil Code works and has the skills to personally assist you.

Services are provided at the same rate specified by the Commonwealth Government of $300 per hour (plus GST). Under the Code, each party is required to pay half the fees.

Service and Support Conflict that can affect your livelihood and value of your business, can be stressful. We provide the facilities and personal support to get you into resolution quickly.

Need a conciliated agreement? He can be nominated or call upon over 100 mediators Australia-wide who he can refer for appointment by the parties to conduct the mediation of your dispute.

Want an adjudicated decision? With the agreement of the parties the expense and delay of the court system can be avoided with a private arbitration.

Contact the Resolver:

The Oil Code has a 3-STEP resolution process

Step 1 of the Mediation procedure

A party starts the process by sending a Notice of Dispute. The quicker you lodge the notice with the other party, the sooner you can make them aware of your problems.

Step 2 of the Mediation procedure

The other party must negotiate in "good faith" to resolve the dispute identified in the Notice. If the dispute changes you can lodge another notice with the party to include it.

Step 3 of the Mediation procedure

If after 3 weeks there has been no resolution of the dispute and one party requests a mediator to assist, the other party must attend and pay half of the costs of the mediation.​

Start the Resolution Process

Under the Code, a party raising a dispute (the franchisee or franchisor) must notify the other party in writing, by sending them a Notice of Dispute setting out:

(a)  the nature of the dispute; and

(b)  what action the complainant thinks will settle the dispute; and

(c)  what outcome the complainant wants.

To make it easy for you, we will professionally prepare your Notice for you. Just fill in the details on our on-line form and we will email it for you, with your supporting documents, to the parties to the dispute.

Once a Notice has been sent, the parties have 3-weeks to negotiate between themselves to attempt to resolve the problems that have been identified before any further action is taken.

Both the franchisor and the franchisee are under an obligation to act in good faith to resolve the dispute.
Where the dispute is long standing and well known between the parties, you can ask the other party to agree to dispense with the period of private negotiation and go immediately to Step 3 and have a mediator appointed to facilitate the resolution of the dispute.

Where a dispute cannot be resolved between the parties within 3 weeks, the Code provides that mediation must take place if either the franchisor or the franchisee refer the matter to a mediator.

A mediation is an assisted negotiation with an independent, accredited and experienced third party. When a mediator is engaged the negotiations can be frank, private and legally privileged. Legislated procedures provide a powerful and quick way to get the parties to meet together and attempt to resolve the dispute in good faith before taking legal action and incurring substantial expense.

Contact the Franchising Dispute Resolver to request the appointment of a mediator to assist with the resolution of your dispute.

Administering your Dispute

We provide end-to-end administration of your dispute to ensure a speedy resolution.

Starting with the Notice of Dispute. We properly format the Notice for you, convert it to a PDF document, help you electronically sign it, upload your documents to be sent with the Notice and then send it on your behalf to the other party. We also follow you up to see if you are in contact with the other party.

When you are ready to proceed to Mediation, we will register your request and assist you provide the information you need to send to the other party. You can upload those documents on-line and we will arrange to email all the material you want to send to them and any other interested parties, like the lawyers.

Video-conferencing facilities are provided at no additional cost, for the conduct of pre-mediation meetings or even the conduct of the mediation, if the parties agree.

Our administration staff will personally contact you and the other party to discuss the nature of your dispute, the mediator skills required and the timing of the mediation.

We will prepare the completed mediation agreement for signature as an electronic document and send it to you along with information sheets about the mediation process.

Get a Mediator to assist you

Once a party lodges a Notice outlining their concerns with the other party, it immediately triggers the legislated dispute process.

If the complaint is not resolved at the end of the 3-week period allowed for negotiation, either party can request a mediator be apponted to facilitate the discussion and resolution.

The mediator is an independent and accredited professional facilitator (usually a practising lawyer with franchising experience). The mediator will usually set the matter down for mediation to be conducted in the State or Territory in which the franchised business is based.

Once the mediator sets the date and time for the mediation, the other party:

The mediation process is both privileged and confidential. This allows the parties to talk frankly and openly with each other and with their lawyers present (if required). With the mediator’s assistance, the parties aim to design an outcome to resolve the problem as discussed and defined by the parties.

Multiple Franchisees in dispute with a Franchisor

We have assisted many franchisees from the same franchise system resolve their conflict with their petroleum franchisor. You can avoid the legal wars and explore the opportunities available.

Whilst the Code of Conducts does not currently mandate multi-party mediations, many franchisors welcome and orderly process of negotiation and mediation that can assist all parties to explore the options and arrive at a joint resolution.

Whe are able to work with your group to help engage and influence the franchise relationship.

The recent Commonwealth Senate Joint Committee Inquiry into the franchising industry has recommended that a mediator or arbitrator be empowered to undertake multi-franchisee resolutions when disputes relating to similar issues arise.

We have the skills and experience to assist franchisees and franchisors explore this new avenue for resolution.

Dispute not resolved, what next?

The Oil Code does not provide a mechanism for the mediator to make a determination about the merits of each party’s case. If after 30 days from the mediation starting, there is no resolution, either party can ask the mediator to terminate the mediation.

When a dispute was not resolved by mediation, it used to mean there was no other option for a franchisee, but to “give-up”, take what was offered or initiate expensive and lengthy litigation in the court system. The recent Franchising Inquiry conducted by the Australian Senate, recommended that the dispute resolution scheme under the Franchising Code of Conduct remain mandatory and be enhanced to include the option of binding arbitration.

Where an arbitration is conducted the arbitrator has the capacity to award remedies, compensation, interest and costs.

If the mediation is unsuccessful, we can assist you and your franchise partner with the legal adjudication of your dispute by appointing an expert evaluator or arbitrator to make a determination.

Contact the OilCode Dispute Resolution Adviser

The Oil Code of Conduct specifically requires the appointment of a Dispute Resolution Adviser. The Oil Code Dispute Resolution Adviser is a person appointed by the Minister.

The Oil Code Dispute Resolution Adviser plays an important role in the resolution of disputes under the Oil Code of Conduct as the Adviser can designate a mediator for the dispute where the parties cannot agree.

Where the parties disagree about to whom they should refer the matter, the parties must notify the Dispute Resolution Adviser that they cannot agree.

The Oil Code provides that the Dispute Resolution Adviser must appoint a person to provide mediation or other assistance within 7 days after the dispute resolution adviser has been notified that the parties cannot agree.

Although the Franchising Code of Conduct specifically requires the appointment of a Mediation Adviser, the details of who is the current Adviser and how to contact the Adviser, is not publicly available.

You can click the link below to be sent the Mediation Adviser contact information if you need to request the Adviser’s assistance with the appointment of a mediator.