SUPER TRIBUNAL COMING TO A PLACE NEAR YOU
Nationals Member for Lismore, Thomas George, today announced that the new NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) is open to help NSW citizens with a range of legal problems, regardless of where they live.
“NCAT, the state’s new “super tribunal” was officially opened last week. It is designed to give people fast, affordable and easy access to justice all across NSW,” Mr George said.
NCAT will deal with consumer and tenancy disputes, such as a dispute about a mouldy rented flat or a cancelled gym membership. It will also hear professional disciplinary matters, and applications about adults who may need assistance managing their financial and other affairs. Finally, NCAT can review decisions by government agencies regarding licenses for real estate agents, security guards and others.
“Hearings will be conducted as close as possible to where the matter in dispute arises so that as many people as possible can access NCAT services regardless of where they live,” he said.
“NCAT has hearing rooms in Lismore and will hold hearings when needed in local court houses and community venues around NSW.
“If required, hearings are expected to be held in locations including Tweed Heads, Tenterfield, Ballina and Byron Bay.
“The new super tribunal has taken on the workload of 22 tribunals and now provides a single entry point for specialist tribunal services. It is expected to receive more than 80,000 applications in its first year.”
NCAT is made up of four divisions:
- The Consumer and Commercial Division deals with tenancy and consumer claims,
- The Occupational Division deals with disciplinary matters against certain professions,
- The Guardianship Division can appoint financial managers or deal with powers of attorney matters, and
- The Administrative and Equal Opportunity Division reviews a range of government decisions.
NCAT already holds some hearings by telephone if parties live far away or are unable to travel. Its largest division, the Consumer and Commercial Division, also accepts applications online and NCAT plans to expand this service to other divisions.
“The specialist expertise and knowledge of the former tribunals has been retained – the biggest difference the community will notice is how much easier it is to access the tribunal services they are looking for,” Mr George said.
For more information about NCAT visit: www.ncat.nsw.gov.au