Notification during building work (section 33)

From 1 July 2018, section 33 of the Building Act 1993 (Act) requires a relevant building surveyor (RBS) to notify the VBA of any failure of a person named as the builder on a building permit to comply with the following requirements:

  1. The person named as the builder on a building permit must notify the relevant building surveyor of the completion of each mandatory notification stage; and
  2. The person named as the builder on a building permit must ensure that anyone carrying out building work stops carrying out that work or any part of that work on completion of a mandatory notification stage, if directed to do so by the relevant building surveyor.

There is currently no approved form for this notice. However, notice must be given in writing to the VBA. The following information is required to assist the VBA in making an assessment:

  1. A letter of explanation on what work was carried out and what action was taken in response.
  2. A copy of the building permit application (Form 1);
  3. A copy of the building permit (Form 2);
  4. The inspection records;
  5. Details of any instruction requiring building work to stop, including the date and time (the instruction may have been given verbally);
  6. The name and registration number of the builder;
  7. The status of the building work;
  8. The applicable mandatory inspection stage;
  9. Information on how the RBS became aware that work proceeded past the mandatory inspection stage, including the date on which this occurred; and
  10. Any photographs or other information.

Please call the VBA on 1300 815 127 if you have any questions in relation to the above.

Please forward the notification in writing, with the above information/documentation, to referrals@vba.vic.gov.au, referencing “s33 Notification” in the subject line of the email.

Penalties and potential disciplinary action for breaches of section 33

Failure by a registered building practitioner to comply with section 33(1) or (2) is an offence under the Act that can attract the following penalty:

  • 120 penalty units ($19,342 as of 1 July 2018), in the case of a natural person; or.
  • 600 penalty units ($96,714 as of 1 July 2018), in the case of a corporation.

Failure to comply with the above can also be the basis for the VBA to take disciplinary action.

Relevant building surveyors must notify the VBA of a builder’s failure to comply with section 33(1) or (2) of the Act. Any failure to comply with this obligation is a breach of section 33(3) of the Act and can be the basis for the VBA to take disciplinary action against the building surveyor.