Background

On 15 December 2014, the Building and Construction Industry Payments Amendment Act 2014 (Qld) commenced.  It amends the Building and Construction Industry Payments Act 2004 (Qld), and will apply to all payment claims served on or after 15 December 2014, with one exception (see below).

Key changes

  • Time: The definition of 'business day' has changed, and time will not run between 22 December and 10 January.
  • Time for progress payments:  Time for making progress payment claims has been halved from 12 months to 6 months after completion of all construction work, unless a later period is allowed under the contract.  For 6 months after commencement, this change only applies to contracts which are entered into on or after 15 December 2014.
  • Time for final payment claims: Final payment claims must now be made by the later of: the period worked out under the contract, 28 days after the end of the last defects liability period or 6 months after completion of all construction work.
  • Time for payment schedule for complex payment claim:  Unless an earlier time is provided under the contract, time for serving a payment schedule for a complex payment claim has been extended to 15 business days if the claim was served 90 days or less after the reference date, or 30 business days, if the claim was served more than 90 days after the reference date.
  • The respondent does not serve a payment schedule:  A claimant cannot immediately apply for judgment.  It must now give the respondent a notice allowing a further 5 business days to serve a payment schedule, prior to commencing proceedings.
  • The registrar:  Adjudication applications are to be made to the registrar, who will refer the application to an adjudicator appointed by the registrar.
  • Time for serving an adjudication response:  For payment claims less than $750,000 (ex GST), the respondent now has 10 business days after receiving the adjudication application or 7 business days after receiving notice of the adjudicator's acceptance of the adjudication application.  For payment claims more than $750,000 (ex GST), the respondent now has 15 business days after receiving the adjudication application or 12 business days after receiving notice of the adjudicator's acceptance of the adjudication application.  The respondent may apply to the adjudicator for an extension of up to 15 business days if the payment claim is for more than $750,000 (excluding GST).
  • New reasons and claimants' right of reply:  A respondent to a complex payment claim is allowed to raise new reasons for withholding payment in its adjudication response. The claimant has a right of reply to new reasons.
  • Time for making an adjudication decision:  The adjudicator must not make a decision during the 'minimum consideration period', being the period within which the respondent may give an adjudication response, and that within which the claimant may give a reply to any new reasons for withholding payment raised in the payment schedule.  For payment claims over $750,000 (ex GST) the deadline for an adjudication decision is 15 business days after either, receipt of the adjudication response or, if the claimant has a right of reply, receipt of that reply.