Building dispute process gets easier in Queensland

For tradies engaged in difficult or complicated work there is a constant risk of building disputes breaking out with clients.

Resolving these issues can be incredibly costly, with dispute resolution taking many months and eating up valuable time for both parties. These delays can also be very expensive for tradies, both in lost productivity and harm to their reputation.

However, a recent change from the state government is set to make it easier to resolve building disputes in Queensland, as well as prevent a lot of hassle for those working in the building industry.

The free early dispute resolution service, which came into effect on July 1, will help conflicting parties to reach settlements faster.

Before this change was implemented there was no assistance provided for either party until the contract had been completed or terminated. In many cases, this would leave the parties in a difficult position for months while the contract was under negotiation.

This new service is just one of a number of new initiatives which are set to bring increased support to the construction industry. The Queensland Building and Construction Commission now also has an internal dispute mechanism so that people who are dissatisfied with the outcome of their hearing can have the decision reviewed internally.

The commission provides a 24/7 call centre to aid with dispute resolution and a revamped website which is designed to be more accessible. These measures will make it easier for both builders and the public to access valuable information.

Minister for Housing and Public Works Tim Mander suggested that these changes would dramatically improve the outcomes for both parties.

“Contract disputes are never pretty but when you’re talking about disputes between mums and dads who are making the biggest investment of their lives, and builders whose livelihoods could be on the line, it’s only natural that emotions can run high,” Mr Mander said.

“This new service will significantly reduce the cost that disputes can place on consumers and contractors as well as substantially reducing the time it takes to resolve them, without legal action.”

While these changes will have the biggest impact for those already in the building profession, it is also important for future apprentices to know about. Unfortunately, disagreements with clients is an inevitable part of being a tradie, so knowing which services are available now can give you greater peace of mind for the rest of your career.

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