Decisions handed down by the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) are enforceable and must be complied with. The Tribunal however, is not responsible for enforcing the decision. The party responsible for taking steps to enforce the decision is the party whose favour the decision has been made in.
In the case of monetary orders, whereby a party must pay you a sum of money, you must apply to the appropriate court to have your decision enforced. The appropriate court for enforcement is determined by the amount of the monetary order.
Magistrates Court: For amounts up to and including $150,000.
District Court: For amounts over $150,000 and up to and including $750,000.
Supreme Court: For amounts above $750,000.
When applying to the appropriate court to have your decision enforced, you must produce to the court a certified copy of the QCAT decision and a sworn statement of fact (an affidavit) stating the amount of the decision not yet paid. Upon filing these documents, the decision is treated as an order of the court would be. You are then able to apply for an enforcement warrant to enforce the judgement or money order. Under an enforcement warrant, the seizure and sale of property of the debtor is authorised. Another course of action that may be taken under the warrant is to redirect the money owed and earnings to ensure that the judgement debt is paid.
A judgment creditor can also look at taking other enforcement action such as issuing a statutory demand and then taking steps to wind up a company, if the judgment debtor is a corporation. Alternatively, if the judgment debtor is a person, it is possible to issue a bankruptcy notice and then if the debtor remains in default, applying to the Federal Circuit Court or Federal Court for a sequestration order to appoint a trustee in bankruptcy to the debtor’s estate.
Aitken Whyte Lawyers
Level 2, 303 Adelaide Street, Brisbane
Ph: +617 3229 4459
Fax: +617 3211 9311