The Queensland Government recently passed amendments to a range of legislation including the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld) (the Act). Two of the most significant changes for Members as a result of these amendments are outlined below:
- Amendment of the time limit on making a complaint
If a complaint is made more than one (1) year after the alleged contravention of the Act, a Commissioner of the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) must decide whether to accept the complaint or not. The Commissioner must only accept the complaint if the complainant has shown good cause as to the delay. Previously, the Act did not provide the Commissioner with this discretion to accept out of time complaints.
- Deferral of acceptance of complaint for out of time contravention
The amendment has included a new provision where a Commissioner of QCAT may defer deciding wither or not to accept an out of time complaint until the Commissioner has tried to resolve the complaint by Conciliation. This section will only apply to a complaint which related to:
- At least 1 alleged contravention of the Act that happened within 1 year before the complaint and
- At least 1 alleged contravention of the Act that happened more than 1 year before the complaint was made and
- The Commissioner decides to accept the complaint that was made within 1 year time limit.
Take Away for QLD Members
Commissioners of QCAT now have the discretion to accept out of time claims made under the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld) so employees or ex-employees may file a complaint after one year and have a Commissioner accept the claim if the employee can show good cause.