The Queensland Government has announced significant reforms to the Building and Construction Industry Payments Act 2004 that will come into force later this year. The amending legislation is still being finalised, but changes that have been announced include:

  • the QBCC will handle the appointment of adjudicators;
  • claims may be made for the return of security, not only the return of retention;
  • extended timeframes for a payment schedule of up to 15 Business Days for responding to large or complex claims (ie. claims in excess of $750,000 or latent condition- or time-related cost claims) and 30 Business Days for a payment claim served more than 91 days after a reference date;
  • the timeframe for providing an adjudication response will be extended from 5 Business Days to 10 Business Days, unless it is a large or complex claim when the timeframe will be up to 15 Business Days, with the potential for the adjudicator to grant an additional 15 Business Days;
  • extended blackout periods for Easter and Christmas when counting Business Days; and
  • respondents will be able to raise additional reasons in adjudication responses, with claimants given a right of reply.

The Queensland Government is targeting 1 September 2014 for the QBCC to begin managing all adjudication applications (regardless of the date the contract was entered into). It also proposes that the remaining changes will apply to all contracts entered into after midnight on 1 September 2014.

The QBCC is hosting a half-day briefing at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Tuesday, 15 April 2014, starting at 8:30am, and we urge you to attend. We'll be monitoring all developments and keep you updated.