Justice of the Peace (JP) and QCAT

Justice of the Peace initiative

In 2015-16 there was an independent review of our Justice of the Peace (JP) initiative. Justices of the Peace have been a part of QCAT for three years, hearing matters in Brisbane, Ipswich, Maroochydore, Southport and Townsville.

The independent review evaluated the initiative’s success against its five objectives:

1. Reduce time taken to finalise minor civil dispute applications and improve clearance rates.

2. Reduce the cost of hearing minor civil disputes.

3. Enable QCAT adjudicators and magistrates to hear more complex matters.

4. Provide opportunities to develop and expand JPs’ skills.

5. Contribute to improving justice system administration and access for Queenslanders.

Following assessment of the evaluation, the Honourable Yvette D’Ath MP, Attorney-General and Minister for Justice announced JPs will now form part of business-as-usual operations within QCAT and continue in the five locations.

Under the initiative a panel of two JPs, one of whom must be legally qualified, constitute the Tribunal to resolve minor civil disputes up to $5000 including:

non-urgent residential tenancy disputes

minor debt matters

consumer and trader disputes

dividing fence matters

motor vehicle property damage disputes.

Sourced from www.qcat.qld.gov.au Annual report 2015-2015 - released 16th February 2018