Last updated 14 December 2016
Any disputes between a park and homeowner can be adjudicated on by the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) where either party applies to the tribunal for the resolution of a dispute (s 140 Manufactured Homes (Residential Parks) Act 2003 (Qld) (Manufactured Homes Act)).
A collection of homeowners may make a joint application to QCAT where the complaint arises from similar circumstances (s 141 Manufactured Homes Act).
The legislation that governs the operation of QCAT provides that the tribunal must:
- ensure the parties have an equal opportunity to assert and defend their rights
- treat like cases alike and allow parties to represent themselves in order to save legal costs.
Before going to QCAT, parties to any dispute in a mobile home park are normally encouraged to use their internal dispute resolution processes. Unfortunately, the Manufactured Homes Act does not stipulate any particular internal dispute resolution process or that any must be put in place.
In preparing for a hearing before the tribunal, parties may be assisted by a lawyer but they have to get the consent of the other party or apply to QCAT to be granted permission to have legal representation at the hearing. The tribunal’s final determination and reasons will be in writing and constitute a public document enforceable as an order of the court.