Announcement - Increase in Small Claims Jurisdiction of Industrial Courts


15 September 2006

A person applying to an 'industrial court' for an order for the recovery of unpaid or underpaid remuneration under the Industrial Relations Act 1996 (IR Act) may request that the application be dealt with under section 379 of the IR Act as a small claims application. A small claims application involves less legalistic proceedings - there is a prima facie prohibition on legal representation of parties and rules of evidence are not binding on the court.

On 15 September 2006 an amendment was made to the Industrial Relations Regulation 2001 increasing the small claims jurisdiction of industrial courts from $10,000 to $20,000. The amendment was gazetted on 15 September 2006 and commenced from the date of gazettal.

The amendment relates to the Industrial Court of NSW and the Industrial Relations Commission of NSW (however constituted) whenever a recovery order is allied with other proceedings before it (s.380 of the Industrial Relations Act 1996); and a Local Court constituted by an Industrial Magistrate (s.364).

The $20,000 cap for the making of a small claims order will apply immediately to existing and new small claims applications.

Further information in relation to recovering monies as a small claim before an Industrial Magistrate may be accessed at the NSW Office of Industrial Relations.

Industrial Registrar
15 September 2006.