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Enforcing a QCAT decision

At the end of a proceeding the tribunal makes a final decision, or an agreement is reached by the parties. The decision may include an order for one or all parties to do something, or to stop acting in a particular way.

If the other party does not comply with a tribunal order to pay money, to do or cease doing an act, you can enforce the tribunal order.

In Queensland, enforcement proceedings are decided in the courts and the type of order you wish to enforce, be it monetary or non-monetary, determines the court to which you apply.

You have six years to enforce your order pursuant to the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999.

Parties should be aware that a breach of a tribunal order that does not relate to the payment of money (a non-monetary order) may also constitute contempt of the tribunal.

In some situations it may not be possible to comply with a QCAT decision. There may also be problems with interpreting, implementing or enforcing a QCAT decision.

In these cases a party may apply to the tribunal for a renewal of the tribunal’s decision.

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Minor civil dispute decisions

Minor civil dispute orders can be enforced through the Magistrates Court even if they do not involve the payment of money.

You need to provide the court with a copy of the tribunal order and an affidavit (a sworn statement signed by you) confirming the amount not paid or an action which has not been taken.

A justice of the peace, commissioner of declarations or a solicitor must witness your affidavit.

It is free to file the order and affidavit with the courts.

Once filed, the QCAT decision is taken to be an order of the court and can be enforced in the same ways as an order of the Magistrates Court.

You may seek independent legal advice about enforcement options including applying for a warrant of execution or a money order.

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Residential tenancy termination decisions

If the tribunal issues a warrant of possession as part of a residential tenancy termination, the police are responsible for executing the warrant.

You may wish to contact the police station closest to the residential property if circumstances change, for example the tenant has left the residential property.

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Monetary decisions

If QCAT’s decision requires a party to pay you money, you can apply to have your decision enforced through the relevant court.

Decision amountRelevant court
Up to and including $150,000Magistrates Court
From $150,000 up to $750,000District Court
More than $750,000Supreme Court

This includes building dispute matters which involve the payment of money.

You need to provide the court with a copy of the tribunal order and an affidavit (a sworn statement signed by you) confirming the amount which has not been paid or other non-compliance with the decision.

A justice of the peace, commissioner of declarations or a solicitor must witness your affidavit.

It is free to file the order and affidavit with the courts.

Once filed, the QCAT decision is taken to be an order of the court and can be enforced in the same ways as an order of the Magistrates Court.

You may seek independent legal advice about enforcement options including applying for a warrant of execution or a money order.

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Non-monetary decisions

For minor civil disputes, non-monetary decisions are enforced through the Magistrates Court.

For all other types of disputes at QCAT, you can apply to have a QCAT decision enforced through the Supreme Court if the decision:

  • does not involve any monetary value
  • involves a monetary value but does not require the payment of money to a person e.g. rectifying defective building work.

The Supreme Court may transfer your application to either the District Court or Magistrates Court if the decision can be made or enforced in either court.

You need to provide the court with a copy of the tribunal order and an affidavit (a sworn statement signed by you) confirming the non-compliance with the decision.

A justice of the peace, commissioner of declarations or a solicitor must witness your affidavit.

It is free to file the order and affidavit with the courts.

Once filed, the QCAT decision is taken to be an order of the court and can be enforced in the same ways as an order of the Magistrates Court.

You may seek independent legal advice about enforcement options including applying for a warrant of execution or a money order.

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Enforcement proceedings

After you have filed the QCAT order at the relevant court, you may need to apply for an enforcement hearing before an enforcement order is made.

Queensland Courts manages enforcement hearings and warrants.

You will be referred to as the enforcement creditor.

An application for an enforcement hearing requires you to serve (give) the other party a statement of financial affairs.

The other party (referred to as the enforcement debtor) will be required to complete this information and include information such as property, assets and earnings.

The court needs this information to make an enforcement order.

The order is referred to as an enforcement warrant, and may be for many different types of order.

The court will determine what enforcement warrant to make based on your application and the financial situation of the other party.

Contact your local courthouse for more information.

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Further information

What is an affidavit?

A written statement made by a person to be used in a court proceeding as evidence. A person who makes an affidavit must swear on oath or make an affirmation that the contents of the affidavit are true. A person who makes an affidavit may be cross-examined about its contents at a hearing.

Last reviewed
18 September 2017
Last updated
18 September 2017

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