Expert Determination of Disputes

Phillip Graham In VCAT on 20 December 2013 Deputy President Aird gave reasons for her Order in proceedings Eliana Constructions and Development Group Pty Ltd v Sidrak (Domestic Building) [2013] VCAT 2160.

The parties' dispute had been an involved one. After an unfinished final hearing lasting 4 days, the parties agreed to enter into Terms of Settlement. The Terms of Settlement specifically provided that the parties would accept as final and binding the assessment of an expert of the costs to complete and/or rectify the works.

Whereas it once had been the case that V.C.A.T. had construed agreements to refer disputes for expert determination as agreements that contravened Section 14 of the Domestic Building Contracts Act 1995, in this instance the Deputy President made an Order in accordance with the expert's determination without requiring the parties to run the dispute all over again.

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