Adjudication in South Australia

socla logoThe Society of Construction Law Australia’s submission on proposed reforms to the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 2009 (SA) are now up on the Small Business Commissioner’s website.

Unhappily for him, my fellow SoCLA director Andrew Robertson had to do the heavy lifting on this, my own time being swamped by other things. He did a great job, and my contribution was Continue reading

A New Security Lock for South Australia

Schubert - Stephan Knoll

Stephan Knoll MP

Stephan Knoll’s Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment (Authorised Nominating Authorities) Amendment Bill got both its First and Second Readings in South Australian House of Assembly a few days ago. If passed, it will provide for South Australia to follow Queensland’s lead in abolishing the for-profit ANA system, instead providing that all appointments of adjudicators by made by the Commissioner for Small Business, as recommended last year by the Moss Review.

It is welcome that Stephan Knoll has paid attention to the Society of Construction Law Australia’s Report on the topic (in which I had a considerable had, as chairman of the Australian Legislative Reform Subcommittee). My colleagues at SoCLA (and I) put a lot of work into that Report, and it is gratifying to see politicians taking notice.

The present legislation could certainly do with some improvement; it is to be hoped that Continue reading

Preparing and Answering Payment Claims

LSSA2015I will be giving a talk in Adelaide for the Law Society of South Australia on Wednesday – 4 November 2015 – on the topic of Preparing and Answering Payment Claims under the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 2009 (SA).

This is not intended to be cutting-edge stuff, but rather a general introduction for general practitioners who may not be familiar with this tricky legislation. It has recently become all the more difficult for newcomers to Continue reading

Back home

debateJust back from the Society of Construction Law’s 2015 Conference in Melbourne. Brilliant.

There were some excellent papers. Everyone will have learned some really useful stuff; I certainly did.  But we also had some good fun.

Yesterday evening, I participated in the dinner debate at the Fox Car Museum. Who is more useful, lawyers or experts? Never have I been involved in such a rigged Continue reading

SA to join Queensland?

Australia SA and QIt looks like South Australia may shortly be joining Queensland in the abolition of the ANA system for appointing adjudicators.

A review was recently commissioned from Alan Moss, who is a former District and Youth Court judge, and this has now been published.The main recommendation of the Review is that the Minister should remove the authorisation of all of the existing ANAs, and instead appoint the relevant government officer, who is the Commissioner for Small Business, as the sole ANA. In this way, it is proposed to deal with the widely perceived institutional bias in the ANA system without the need for amending legislation.

This review is very welcome, the ANAs in South Australia having Continue reading

Support for the Bust?

bust

Update; see Even Less Support fo the Bust

The construction industry in Australia seems to be going through rather a hard time at the moment, and there is a fair bit of insolvency about. There is topicality in the question,

“Can a company in liquidation avail itself of the Security of Payment Legislation by validly commencing an adjudication?”

It is not hard to find examples of liquidators who take the view that the Security of Payment Legislation is available for them[1], or of adjudicators who share that view, but what is the true legal position?[2]

There appear to be no decided cases on the validity of an adjudication process where the claimant was in liquidation before commencing the adjudication. However, it is not a question that is entirely devoid of authority, and indeed the answer “no” to the question posed above emerges from Continue reading

SA SoP Rev

The Governement of South Australia is reviewing the operation of the security of payment legislatioin here in the state, and I was asked by the Law Society to lob in my twopenny worth.

In doing so I tried to consuklt as widely as possiblew with other members of the Society Of Constrcxution Law Australia in the State.

This is the result, which went in today: Continue reading