Last updated 21 June 2016

The Queensland Building and Construction Commission

If work is below standard or incomplete, a complaint can be made to the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC). The QBCC employs qualified building inspectors to investigate complaints by consumers. The inspectors will decide whether the work is of an acceptable standard and, if necessary, can direct the builder to rectify or complete the work within a reasonable period. The QBCC can also arrange for the work to be completed or rectified under the insurance policy, when appropriate. Decisions of the QBCC can be reviewed by the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT).

The Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal

The tribunal is intended to deliver justice in a way that is independent, efficient, expert, accessible and flexible. It makes decisions for a number of matters including domestic and commercial building disputes.

If a contractor does not comply with a QBCC direction to rectify, the QBCC can initiate disciplinary action against the contractor in QCAT. If a QBCC licensee or a homeowner disagrees with a QBCC decision, they are entitled to take the domestic building dispute to QCAT.

As detailed on the QCAT website, for a dispute to be heard by the tribunal it must be about:

  • the erection or construction of a building
  • the renovation, alteration, extension, improvement or repair of a building
  • the provision of electrical work, water supply, sewerage or drainage, or similar services for a building
  • the demolition, removal or relocation of a building
  • any site work including the construction of a swimming pool, retaining structures, driveways or landscaping
  • the preparation of plans and specifications, or bills of quantity relating to building work
  • the inspection of a completed building
  • work prescribed under a Regulation.

Making an application in relation to a building dispute

To make an application in relation to a building dispute, one of the following must be completed and lodged under the QBCC Act:

Application forms are available on the QCAT website and can be lodged at the Brisbane office or at any Magistrates Court (other than the Brisbane Magistrates Court). After an application is made, the QCAT will review the information provided and give advice in relation to the next steps to be followed.

Fees

A full list of QCAT fees and allowances is available on the QCAT website.

Representation

Generally, all parties involved in a QCAT matter must be self-represented. However, a party involved in a disciplinary proceeding is automatically able to be represented. Any other party wishing representation must apply to QCAT. Representation may not be permitted.