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Another new section that has been added to the QBCC Act is 72AA. This section provides that a person must not, without reasonable excuse, delay rectifying building work that is defective or incomplete, or to remedy consequential damage, as required by a direction to rectify or remedy. It also provides that a person must not, without reasonable excuse, obstruct another person rectifying building work that is defective or incomplete, or to remedy consequential damage, as required by a direction to rectify or remedy.
The timeframe in which the QBCC can issue a direction to rectify or remedy has also been increased from six years and three months, to six years and six months.
The timeframe has been extended to better align it with the Queensland Home Warranty Scheme, which generally provides assistance for a structural defect in residential construction work for six years and six months after commencement of cover.
This change will ensure that a direction to rectify or remedy can always be issued during the period of cover under the Scheme.
Another change in this section is that a person making a request for rectification of building work or remediation of consequential damage under 71J(1) and 71J(2), must make the request within 12 months of becoming aware of the building work in question.
Building contractors now have the ability to apply for an extension of time to comply with a direction to rectify or remedy. The aim of this change is to achieve a reasonable balance between the interests of building contractors and consumers. This extension is a non-reviewable decision.
A significant penalty will apply for a failure to comply with a direction to rectify. However, there may be circumstances beyond a licensee's control where it would be appropriate for an extension of time to be granted.
The extension of time is intended to be used for circumstances such as wet weather or a delay in the supply of materials.