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Support for transport and forestry small businesses

Improving the position of small businesses in the transport and forestry industries

On this page

  • Links to practical assistance for owner drivers
  • Links to practical assistance for forestry contractors
  • Links to information for tip truck drivers
  • Links to information for hirers
  • Links to information for freight brokers

The Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005

The Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005 aims to improve the position of owner drivers and forestry contractors who run small businesses transporting goods or harvesting forestry products. The Act:

  • requires certain information to be given to owner drivers and contractors before engagement
  • prohibits unconscionable and unfair contract terms and practices
  • mandates the provision of written contracts, as well as minimum earnings for ongoing or long-term engagements
  • requires minimum periods of notice when terminating ongoing or long-term engagements
  • provides access to fast and low-cost dispute resolution through the Victorian Small Business Commission.

Hirers and freight brokers in the transport and forestry industries have legal obligations under this Act, which was amended on 1 May 2020. It is important that they fully understand these obligations.

Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Code of Practice

This Code of Practice has been established under the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005. It promotes fair business relationships between owner drivers or forestry contractors and their hirers.

The Code establishes mandatory requirements that all hirers, owner drivers and forestry contractors must comply with.

The Code provides guidance on conduct that is likely to be unconscionable conduct and contract terms that are likely to be unjust. The Code also describes industry best practice.

It is important that you read the Code and that you fully understand your rights and obligations. If you have any questions about the Code, please call our Information Line on 1800 287 287.

Information for owner drivers

As an owner driver, you can get help to better understand the typical operating costs of running an owner driver business. You can also find information about your rights when entering into contractual arrangements with hirers and freight brokers.

Visit the Owner drivers page

Information for forestry contractors

As a harvesting and haulage contractor working in forestry, you can get help to better understand your business cost structures. You can also find information about your rights when entering into contractual arrangements with hirers and freight brokers.

Visit the Forestry contractors page

Information for tip truck owner drivers

As a tip truck driver engaged to work on building and construction sites in Victoria, you can get help to better understand your business cost structures. You can also find information about your rights when entering into contractual arrangements with hirers and freight brokers.

Visit the Tip truck drivers page

Information for hirers

Hirers of owner drivers and forestry contractors have legal obligations under the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2015. From 1 May 2020, they may face penalties if they fail to meet these obligations.

Visit the Hirers page

Information for freight brokers

Freight brokers in the transport and forestry industries have legal obligations under the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2015. From 1 May 2020, they may face penalties if they fail to meet these obligations.

Visit the Freight brokers page

Wage Inspectorate Victoria

Wage Inspectorate Victoria is responsible for monitoring compliance with the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act 2005.

If you have any questions, Wage Inspectorate Victoria is available to provide information and answer queries. Please call the Information Line on 1800 287 287 or email.

Make an anonymous report

If you suspect someone is breaking the rules relating to owner drivers or contractors, you can report it. Click here to fill out a report form. We will not ask you for personal information such as your name or contact details. We will not contact you about the information you have given us or ask you to be involved in our investigations.