If disputes between tenants and landlords or agents cannot be resolved in regards to a bond or a security deposit, there is an authority where a dispute can be escalated. This varies depending on the state or territory.
It can be a good idea to try and find a government or council run dispute resolution or mediation service before progressing to a tribunal or court case. This can be beneficial for resolving the dispute quickly and for a cheaper cost for all people involved.
State or Territory Requirements
NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) have the power to hear and settle disputes about residential tenancies, including bond disputes.
Queensland has a free dispute resolution service. Alternatively, the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) is where disputes are heard.
Victorian Civil & Administrative Tribunal is where disputes are heard.
ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (ACAT) is where disputes are heard.
Disputes can be taken to the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (SACAT). The tribunal can require that a bond paid into the Fund be paid out and applied as directed by the Tribunal.
The Magistrates Court has exclusive jurisdiction to determine a dispute.
The Commissioner has to the power to determine disputes arising in relation to the disbursement of security deposits.
Exceptions by the Commissioner may be made to the time limitations on lodging a dispute if the Authority has not already paid out the security deposit; or the security deposit has not been forfeited to the Authority. (Unclaimed security deposits can be forfeited to the Authority).
The commissioner can determine any final amount of security deposit to be paid out.
Any person may appeal to a Court against the determination of the Commissioner.
Disputes can be taken to the Northern Territory Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NTCAT).
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These legal guides provide a brief summary and introduction of the laws and regulations affecting renting. They do not cover all cases and might not apply to your specific rental property situation. It is important that you use this information as a guide only and seek independent Legal Advice or consult the Relevant Legislation. Snug does not accept any liability that may arise from the use of this information.