Asked to sign Deed of Release for a refund


I am currently in communication with a business regarding a failure to provide an acceptable level of service. Part of the issue is that they are an online broker (like AirBnb, AirTasker etc) and don’t provide the actual service themselves, so there has been some dispute over what the actual failure was. I have been requesting a partial refund as some of the service was provided but not to the standard I paid for and they have now said they will offer me a very small payment as “goodwill” with the condition that I sign a “Deed of Release.”

This “deed of release” waives any admission of liability on their part and discharges them from any further actions. My immediate instinct is that this is a straight forward refund under Australian Consumer Law and therefore I shouldn’t have to sign any such deed.

I’m not going to sign it (as the amount they offered is too small for the service failure IMO) but I feel perturbed that they are asking me to do this and I suspect it may be because I mentioned that I had raised a complaint with my local Fair Trading office.

I’ve read the article Non-disclosure agreements and interestingly this deed doesn’t mention non-disclosure as such, only that I can’t talk about the deed itself to anyone else…

I am going to respond to them requesting a larger refund, but should I also refuse signing any future deeds? And do I have a right to a refund regardless of whether I sign the deed or not?

Thanks for your help


Hi @henry

We can’t give you legal advice here, most if not all are not qualified legal experts. What you are asking for should be best served by contacting one of the free Consumer Legal advice centres that every State and Territory have. On this site we have a small list of some of these centres that would be a good starting point to find a centre that is appropriate for your location.

I hope you have success is finding assistance with your issue. As we cannot offer the legal advice you are seeking, I have closed the topic to avoid errant advice being given.