Now there is a new, fairer, quicker payment system for everyone in the building and construction industry. The Adjudication process is designed to resolve payment disputes in a fair, but rapid manner.
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Compulsory rapid adjudication, also known as ‘security of payment’, commenced in Queensland on 1 October 2004. It applies to construction contracts made after 30 September 2004 and it is essential to plan ahead. Failure to do so may have drastic consequences.
Over the past two years the Queensland Building Services Authority has worked hard to deliver this new system for improved payment outcomes for sub-contractors in the building and construction industry. Through its appointment as an Authorised Nominating Authority, Adjudicate Today Pty Limited in conjunction with Mutual Mediations Pty Ltd provides a comprehensive service that determines your rights to recover payments under the Building and Construction Industry Payments Act 2004 (QLD) [“the Act”].
The Act creates a dispute resolution process (adjudication) that allows a party alleging they are owed monies under a construction contract to promptly obtain payment on an interim basis, based on an assessment of the merits of the claim by an appropriately qualified and independent adjudicator.
The Act gives claimants the option of submitting a dispute over a payment claim to compulsory rapid adjudication even if the construction contract has no provision for progress payments and even if the contract is for a single supply for a lump sum price. The term ‘progress payment’ includes a claim for the whole contract price, a final payment.
The process is not only rapid (it should be completed in 10 business days) but if the respondent’s reasons for not paying are spurious, the respondent should be liable for all the adjudication fees. The process is usually entirely in writing and it is so simple that a claimant does not require a lawyer. After adjudication the claimant takes the adjudication certificate to the appropriate court and registers it as a judgment debt.
Unlike litigation or arbitration, compulsory rapid adjudication cannot result in the claimant being liable to the respondent. The respondent cannot initiate adjudication or obtain a determination that the claimant must pay the respondent money. The maximum liability of the unsuccessful claimant is the amount of the adjudication fees. Even then, the fees are to be shared by the parties unless the adjudicator determines otherwise.
The Act broadly defines those persons who may make progress claims under the Act, including: contractors against clients; subcontractors against contractors; suppliers of building components against purchasers; architects, engineers, and others providing advice against clients, plant and equipment hirers against clients.
For more comprehensive and user-friendly information to assist you understand this revolutionary new legislation, please visit www.adjudicate.com.au.