Contracts | Queensland Building and Construction Commission

When you need a contract

When you need a written contract depends on whether you are undertaking commercial building work or domestic building work.

Before you sign a contract

Before you sign a contract you should:

  • carefully check all contract papers (including plans and specifications)
  • seek legal advice to ensure you understand your rights and obligations.

If the project is domestic building building work, read our guide below containing general information about domestic building contracts and the relevant Queensland legislation.

Domestic building contracts—information for owners and contractors (PDF, 918KB) 

Which contract to use

To comply with the relevant Queensland legislation, you have a few contract options:

  • use one of our contracts
  • use a contract developed by a major industry association
  • develop your own contract—but you must obtain legal advice to ensure it is compliant.

The QBCC produces a range of domestic  building contracts, and a commercial subcontract, which include all forms and schedules necessary to enable you to conveniently document and carry out your building project.


Warning about using your own contract

If you want to use your own written agreement, it’s essential you get legal advice first. The contract requirements for domestic building work are much more detailed than the contract requirements for commercial work. You risk prosecution, fines, or financial loss if you go use a contract without making sure that it complies with the Queensland legislation.  

Warning against using old or interstate subcontracts

Recent changes to relevant Commonwealth and State legislation can make it inappropriate or even legally dangerous to use older contracts or contracts produced in a different jurisdiction (e.g. contracts from a different State or even from overseas).

Termination rules

The QBCC strongly recommends that, before signing, contractors seek legal advice regarding the termination clauses of any contract they intend to use for building work. Termination of any contract is a significant step which should not be taken without prior legal advice from an experienced lawyer.

Offence to not put contract in writing

A contractor commits an offence if they don't use a written contract which complies with the requirements of the QBCC act for regulated building. QBCC may prosecute or take disciplinary action and apply demerit points. This can lead to loss of licence, potential fines and financial loss for the contractor.

Last reviewed: 11 Mar 2024 Last published: 11 Mar 2024
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