Main content area

Enforcing Tribunal orders

Tribunal orders are legally binding and enforceable. Parties who contravene or fail to comply with an order of the Tribunal may be subject to a civil penalty of $11,000 (or $22,000, in the case of a corporation) (NCAT Act 2013, section 72(3) and section 77).

This is changed

Contravention of CTTT orders was a criminal offence, for which a party could be prosecuted in the Local Court. Contravention of NCAT orders is subject to a civil penalty, which can be imposed by the Tribunal in proceedings instigated by the Attorney-General (NCAT Act 2013, section 77).

Money orders

A Tribunal order for the payment of money (for example, compensation) can be enforced through the courts - in most cases, the Local Court (NCAT ACt 2013, section 78).

Ask the Tribunal registry for a certified copy of the order, and present this to the Local Court, where it will be registered as a judgment debt. It can then be enforced by a writ of execution (the Sheriff will collect the money or seize property from the other party, sell it at auction and pay the debt from the proceeds) or a garnishee order (the court orders the other party’s employer to pay part of the party’s wages towards the debt).

Tip

For more information on enforcing Tribunal orders through the Local Court, see the online guide on Debt by LawAccess.

Termination orders

Termination orders can be enforced by officers of the NSW Sheriff, with the assistance of the police if necessary. No-one else may enforce a termination order. See section on Evictions and Lockouts.

Specific performance orders

If a specific performance order (SPO) is not complied with, the party who applied for the SPO can renew the proceedings in the Tribunal (NCAT Act 2013, Schedule 4, clause 8) . The Tribunal can make another SPO, and/or another type of order (for example, a rent reduction, a termination order, or an order to pay rent to the Tribunal), to provide a remedy. It can also refer the contravention of its earlier order to NSW Fair Trading, for possible prosecution. (NSW Fair Trading rarely prosecutes contraventions of Tribunal orders, but the prospect of it happening may encourage your landlord to comply.) The time limit for renewing proceedings is 12 months from the date given by the Tribunal for compliance (NCAT Act 2013, Schedule 4, clause 8(2)).