Statutory Warranties
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Statutory Warranties

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Article summary

Refer to statutory warranties and actions by regulators or legal action in this respect:
• regulators exist to protect the rights of owner - to ensure we go back. Since we always go back, we should never need regulators involved in our business
• we never suggest they get involved because that’s a straight-out admission we can’t solve our own issues and that we’ve lost control of the situation
• if you have any issues and need support, feel free to call the Quality or Service teams for support and you need to contact your Team Leader to intervene in the first instance. Don’t let it escalate!
• establish a good relationship with the regulators – maintain healthy positive communication – if there is an issue we want them to be upfront and tell us. The closer and more open/honest we are with them, the more likely they will want to work with us.
• insofar as the regulators are concerned if they are called in by an owner they will follow their process of giving us written notice and on opportunity to address the works before they attend an inspection – example below
• they will use the legislated definition of defects (12-month general defects definition example below) to identify a defect
• And then use the NCC and referenced Australian Standards as well as the ‘Standards and Tolerances guide’ and other documents to confirm the defect and provide advice as to what is required to be fixed by the builder. If the builder doesn’t complete the work, a direction can be issued by the regulator
Statutory warranties for building works such as ‘Structural Defects’ (QLD) or ‘Major Defects’ (NSW) exist in every state and run for over 6 years from Practical Completion (each state is slightly different).
These warranties may have slight variances to the definition and scope, but they are all essentially based on the critical areas of the National Construction Code (NCC) which relate to performance criteria of ensuring a building is safe for people.

Generally, these include (as an example):
Note fire safety and combustible cladding typically fall within this definition as they are linked to health and safety and functional use – meaning the liability for these remains for the 6+ years.
That includes fire rated compartments (partitions and ceilings), passive fire systems, cladding generally and cladding over and adjacent to fire exits in particular

  • Hutchies’ Statutory Defects Quick Guide /

More information on the regulator’s procedures/legislative requirements are below:
Queensland Building & Construction Commission (QBCC)
Victorian Building Authority (VBA)
New South Wales Department of Fair Trading (NSWFT)

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