Adjudication is a process created by the Security of Payments Act to resolve a disputed claim for payment due under a construction contract. It can help resolve payment disputes quickly, fairly and at a lower cost than going to court.
An independent adjudicator receives written submissions from both sides of the payment dispute, conducts inspections or conferences where necessary, and decides the amount, if any, due in respect of a progress payment claimed under the SOP Act.
The adjudicator makes the determination within 10 business days. This time may be extended by a further if the claimant agrees. The decision is interim, and does not affect the parties’ rights and obligations under their contract.
In the event of non-payment of a payment claim by the due date, the claimant has a right to apply to an adjudicator to determine on that payment claim and give an independent assessment and a determination of what (if any) should be paid by the Respondent. It is essential to ensure that the payment claim is valid that it strictly follows the requirements as set out in the Act, and the contract (if there is a contract in place). A response to the payment claim, known as a payment schedule, can also be sent if the other party contests the claimed amount. To maintain compliance with the Security of Payment Act, the response notice must include the proposed amount for payment, clarity on the difference between the claimed amount and the proposed amount for payment, and the basis on which the calculation of the proposed amount is done. It must be ensured that the payment claim notice is clear and complies with the Act. If not, then the claimant might not be able to rely on the payment claim notice in a situation where it applies for adjudication of that payment claim. If it is deemed the payment claim is not inline with the requirements as set out in the Act, the payment claim will be invalid.
Adjudication is a process to resolve disputes without the involvement of an expensive and lengthy court procedure. The Security of Payment Act, in all its variances in the States and Territories of Australia, is intended to make the adjudication process an informal one; however, it has emerged as a formal process where both parties started sharing detailed submissions and witness statements. The entire process of adjudication can be briefly understood under the following sections:
Commencement: The process starts when the party referring the dispute to an ANA for adjudication commences with a written notice of its intentions to do so, this is done by way of an Adjudication Application. The claimant must ensure they have met the requirements of the Act to this point, where they must have validly served a claim and other notices that may or may not be required to be served on the respondent. After the claimant has ensured they have satisfied all the requirements under the Act, the adjudication application must;
The key steps after an adjudication application has been deemed valid by the ANA is;
Adjudicator’s Appointment: Appointing an adjudicator is the next step following the service of the notice of adjudication. Adjudicator’s appointment has to be secured within a strict time frame from service of the notice of adjudication.
Notice of Acceptance: The adjudication process requires the referral notice to be served within seven days of service of the notice of adjudication. This notice includes the details of the case of the party who is referring the dispute to adjudication.
Determination: With a strict deadline set by the Security of Payment Act, an adjudicator must decide within a 10 day period of the referral notice, the adjudicator has the right to request a further period of a maximum of 10 days in some instances to make their determination.
Payment of Determination (if any): after the determination is issued, if the adjudicator determined that the responded should pay the claimant, the respondent has 5 days to do so. After this time the claimant has a right to request a certificate of the determination which can be used to register the debt in court.
We help contracting and supplier businesses within the construction sector about all matters associated with invoicing, payment claims, payment schedules, variations, contracts, project management, business management and the most importantly, the Security of Payments Act. We are an extremely efficient and cost effective solution to getting your payment claims paid with compared to lawyers, debt collectors and legal firms which can routinely cost tens of thousands of dollars for little to no return in many instances.
Adjudicate For You has a proven track record of successful adjudication determination, The professional staff at Adjudicate For You work with you to compile all the evidence required and then fulfill all the requirements to lodge a complete adjudication application. Adjudicate For You navigates the process for you to ensure you are paid what you are owed.
We understand that from time to time contract disputes and payment issues may arise, even with your most trusted and long held clients. It is important that in order to best protect yourself and your businesses interests, and to have an ability to properly resolve the dispute at hand, that the key requirements under the relevant construction contract and applicable Security of Payment Act must be strictly adhered too,
We are a whole of business consultant and help you put in place the processes and systems to ensure your business acts in the best prepared manner in the future.
Our core services are:
Once we have established your position and the dispute at hand, we will then consult with you about your rights under the Security of Payment Act.