The Coalition Government welcomes legislation passing through the New South Wales Parliament to protect subcontractors working in the state’s construction industry.
The reforms in NSW adopt key recommendations of the national Review of Security of Payment Laws. Conducted by John Murray AM, the Review made 86 recommendations to improve protections for small businesses and address the high insolvency rates in the construction industry.
Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Amendment Bill 2018 (NSW) will ensure subcontractors can feel more confident about being paid on time.
“This is a significant win for subcontractors in NSW and could lay the foundations for improvements across Australia,” Minister Andrews said.
“State and territory security of payment laws are in place to preserve cash flow for construction industry subcontractors, but we know insolvencies and late payment issues continue to put hard working Australians out of business.”
The legislative changes will mean:
- Head contractors have 20 business days to pay sub-contractors, instead of 30 business days
- Sub-contractors will be able to make a claim at least once a month for completed work, and a final claim if a contract is terminated, and
- NSW Fair Trading will have increased compliance and enforcement powers.
Minister Andrews said the Coalition was working with all jurisdictions through the Building Ministers’ Forum to respond to the Review and deliver improvements in security of payment regimes.
“The Review provides a blueprint to improve protections and consistency in security of payment regimes across the country and I encourage other jurisdictions to follow the lead of NSW in adopting its recommendations.”
The NSW Government has also announced it will now prepare a regulatory impact statement to analyse whether to adopt a system of statutory trusts to further strengthen security of payment arrangements