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Service of applications and documents

When you file a document or application at QCAT you are also required to ‘serve’ documents to a person or business (such as a copy of an application you have made about them).

When an application is filed, QCAT will return copies of your application and/or documents stamped with the QCAT seal (official stamp). You must then deliver (serve) a copy of the stamped documents to the other person or business.

In limited cases QCAT will a serve a copy of an application on your behalf, for example:

A full list of applications is available by referring to QCAT Rules 2009,rule 19, 20, 20A and 21.

In these cases QCAT may require you to make further enquiries about the contact details of the other party if the details you provide are not up-to-date.

How do I serve the documents?

Generally you can serve documents on the respondent by personally giving the documents to them, or by post. If the other party has specified an address for service in documents already filed in QCAT, you can serve documents in the way specified in the address for service.

Different requirements may apply if you are serving a company; a copy of the corporations search by ASIC may be required.

You can pay a fee to have the documents professionally served by a Magistrates Court bailiff, commercial agent or process server.

Please refer to the instructions on your application form for service requirements for your type of application.

For more information:

How long do I have to serve the documents?

Timeframes are different depending on the type of application. In most cases you have seven days from lodging your application to complete service. If you are required to serve the application personally you will have 28 days to serve the application. If the application is for a minor debt you will have 90 days to serve the application.

Please refer to the instructions on your application form for service requirements for your type of application.

Proof of service

To prove a QCAT application has been served the applicant must complete an affidavit of service (PDF, 296.3 KB) and provide to QCAT.

What if the respondent is interstate?

There are additional requirements when you need to serve an application or document interstate.

QCAT applications to be served in Australia but outside of Queensland must be accompanied by SEPA Form 1 notice. There are three types of SEPA form 1 notices: general, minor civil dispute and minor debt.

The SEPA notice must be attached to the application or document when it is served for service to be effective.

Different rules apply if you are serving an application for a notice to produce. You may wish to get independent legal advice about the appropriate method of service.

For more information:

Last reviewed
23 December 2016
Last updated
23 December 2016

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