In Central Projects Pty Ltd v Davidson [2018] NSWSC 523, the Court upheld the validity of a "supporting statement" (required to be attached to a payment claim) for the purpose of the NSW SOP Act despite its errors.

A head contractor in NSW must not serve a payment claim on the principal unless it is accompanied by a supporting statement that, among other things, includes a statement that all subcontractor have been paid. In this case, even though the supporting statement inserted the principal's name instead of the subcontractors' names, and did not list all of the relevant subcontractors, the Court awarded the head contractor (Central Projects) the adjudicated amount ($1.2 million) and its costs.

In Brefni Pty Ltd v Specific Industries Pty Ltd [2018] NSWSC 578, the principal submitted a revised payment schedule a few hours after it submitted its original. This was the only information that the adjudicator could take into account, as the principal's adjudication response was served out of time. Justice McDougall succinctly rejected the claimant’s argument that the adjudicator could not have regard to the revised payment schedule in the circumstances of the case.

These cases shows that the court continue to prefer “substance over form”, which is broadly in line with the policy of the NSW SOP Act, which is to provide a mechanism for prompt payment to downstream participants on construction projects.