NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal and retail leases
The Consumer and Commercial Division of the NCAT now has
jurisdiction to deal with retail tenancy disputes and claims of
unconscionable, misleading or deceptive conduct. Proceedings
relating to retail tenancy disputes are generally commenced in the
Consumer and Commercial Division of the NCAT by an Application for
Original Decision and a Request for an Interim Order accompanied by
the requisite application fee. In the case of a retail lease
matter, the current application fee is $77.
In circumstances where lease-related applications had been
lodged with the ADT prior to 1 January 2014, these matters will be
directly transferred and dealt with by NCAT, including proceedings
which had already commenced before the ADT. Therefore new
applications do not have to be lodged at the NCAT.
Key points about retail lease disputes and the NCAT
When commencing proceedings at the NCAT, applicants must comply
with the procedures and practices which have been formally set out
in Schedule 3 of the NCAT Act and the NCAT Regulation. Although the
prescribed rules and procedures appear to reflect those which
previously applied to the ADT, it remains unclear whether such
rules and procedures will be modified by the NCAT over time.
Applicants may apply online, by post or lodge application forms
at the relevant registry. However, it is important to note that
urgent applications cannot be lodged online and must be made in
Applications concerning leasing disputes must be submitted with
a certificate issued by the NSW Small Business Commissioner which
certifies that mediation has failed to resolve the dispute. If an
application for an original decision is not accompanied by the
certificate, the application will not be processed by the
Exceptions to the requirement for mediation include
applications for urgent interim orders or for the appointment of a
specialist retail valuer.
Hearings conducted by the NCAT are to be done with little
formality, with parties being encouraged to present their own
Because of the high costs, royal commissions should only be convened to address issues of substantial public importance.
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