On Wednesday, 21 May, the Queensland Government introduced the Building and Construction Industry Payments Amendment Bill 2014 (Qld) (Bill) to amend the Building and Construction Industry Payments Act 2004 (Qld) (Act) and referred it to an undisclosed Parliamentary Committee for review.
The Bill seeks to amend the Act to address the significant issues raised by stakeholders and align with the three key areas of reform, being:
- Appointment of adjudicators and the adjudication process,
- Amendments of the timeframes for claimants and respondents, and
- Provision of additional information in the adjudication response.
The proposed amendments to the Act are:
- The Queensland Building and Construction Commission will keep a central registry of claims to monitor performance and refer to adjudicators (resulting in a reduction of fees),
- The time to make a claim will be reduced to 6 months from the date of the work being carried out,
- For complex claims (i.e. more than $750,000 or claims for a latent condition or time related cost), a respondent will now have 15 days (currently 10 days) to provide a payment schedule. The time to respond will be increased to 30 days if the payment claim for a progress payment is served more than 90 days after the date for which a progress payment claim can be made,
- A respondent will now have 10 days (currently 5 days) to provide an adjudication response and will be extended to 15 days for complex claims,
- The definition of ‘business days’ will exclude the three days before Christmas up to 10 days after New Year’s Day, and
- For complex claims, the respondent can include reasons for withholding payment (however, this can be taken into consideration by the adjudicator when apportioning the adjudication fees).
The Bill can be read here.
The Explanatory Notes can be read here.
For further information, please contact Jay Leary, Partner, Brisbane or your usual Herbert Smith Freehills contact.