The complaints process

The Building Professionals Board investigates formal complaints in a transparent, impartial and effective manner in accordance with the principles of natural justice and the requirements of the Building Professionals Act 2005.

The Board can investigate complaints about accredited certifiers, but not builders, tradespeople or property owners. Roles in enforcement has more information about the enforcement powers of the Board, certifiers, councils and other bodies.

What happens after a complaint is lodged

Once a complaint is received, the Board will:

  1. inform the certifier, send them a copy of the complaint and supporting information, and invite them to respond in writing
  2. decide whether to conduct a formal investigation, and if so, send the investigation report to the certifier for comment before a decision is made
  3. notify the complainant and the certifier in writing of the Board’s decision.

The time taken to process a complaint depends on how complex the matter is, and how soon all requested information is submitted to the Board.

Appeals

The certifier (but not the complainant) may appeal any disciplinary decision made by the Board at the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal, which replaced the Administrative Decisions Tribunal on 1 January 2014. The vast majority of decisions by the Board have been upheld on appeal.

Reasons why a complaint may be dismissed

The Board may dismiss a complaint at any time for various reasons, including if:

  • further information about the complaint is not given upon request, or the complaint or the further information are not verified
  • the complaint is trivial, lacking in substance or not made in good faith
  • the complaint has been dealt with previously or another complaint has been lodged about the matter
  • there are alternative ways to resolve the matter, such as conciliation
  • the complaint deals with matters that don't constitute professional misconduct or unsatisfactory professional conduct
  • the complaint relates to events more than three years before the complaint was made.