What happens if I fail to comply with the Code?

If you’re a code covered entity and you’ve failed to comply with the Code: 

  • you may be excluded from performing Commonwealth funded building work
  • the details of your breach (including the entities involved) may be published.

These consequences are consistent with the opt-in nature of the Code, whereby building contractors and building industry participants choose to become code covered entities in order to be eligible to undertake Commonwealth funded building work.

Where the ABC Commissioner is satisfied that a code covered entity has failed to comply with the Code, the Commissioner may refer the matter to the Minister with recommendations, if any, that a sanction should be imposed. 

Where a matter has been referred to the Minister, the Minister may impose an exclusion sanction on the code covered entity or issue a formal warning that a further failure to comply may result in an exclusion sanction.

Alternatively, or in addition, the Commissioner may publish the details of the non-compliance.

What’s an exclusion sanction?

An exclusion sanction means a period during which time a code covered entity is not permitted to tender for, or be awarded, Commonwealth funded building work.

An exclusion sanction may be:

  • for any period that the Minister is satisfied is appropriate, but no longer than one year in duration
  • subject to conditions that apply the exclusion sanction only to a division of a business operating in a particular state or territory
  • extended to related entities if the Minister is satisfied it is appropriate to do so.

Exclusion sanctions that are applied, or formal warnings that are applied, may also be published by the Minister

What does publication of Code non-compliance involve?

Publication of non-compliance with the Code involves setting out the circumstances and conduct that resulted in the breach and publicly identifying the entity involved. 

The purposes of publication are to:

  • educate code covered entities on the types of conduct that contravenes the Code
  • ‘call out’ entities involved in serious Code breaches that do not seek to voluntarily rectify those breaches and prevent them from reoccurring
  • deter others from similar non-compliant conduct
  • enable building industry participants to make informed decisions on who they chose to engage to perform building work.