The Tasmanian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Bill 2020 (Tas) (the “Bill”) was introduced to Tasmania’s House of Assembly on 19 August 2020, by Minister for Justice, Elise Archer. The Bill passed the Assembly on 27 August 2020, was introduced to the Legislative Council on 15 September 2020 and is currently before the Council.
According to the Explanatory Memorandum, the Bill proposes the creation and establishing of the Tasmanian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (“TasCAT”) which will be based in Hobart.
As indicated in the Explanatory Memorandum, this Bill is the first of several Bills that will be necessary to establish TasCAT. This Bill:
Future bills will expand TasCAT’s jurisdiction and will provide further powers including in relation to costs, diversity proceedings and alternative dispute resolution.
The Bill underwent a consultation process open to the public and relevant stake-holders. At close of the consultation period, on 29 May 2020, submissions had been received from seven interested parties.
As outlined in the EM, the establishment of TasCAT “will improve access to justice for the Tasmanian community. It will also allow for the better utilisation of administrative support and resources for proceedings in Tasmania”.
The Minister said in a Media Release “once the Bill has been considered by the Legislative Council, the next step will be to commence the appointment of the President of TasCAT”.
The Minister said in her speech to Parliament:
Rosalie Woodruff MP (Member for Franklin, Tasmanian Greens) commented:
During the consultation stage, the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (Tasmanian Branch) submitted:
The Australian Lawyers Alliance submitted:
“… the ALA is supportive of the Tasmanian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Bill 2020. The ALA supports the establishment of the Tasmanian Civil and Administrative Tribunal and considers it an important measure to achieve greater access to justice for disadvantaged people facing a range of civil issues including discrimination, dust disease, guardianship and administration issues, mental health and residential tenancy disputes.”
Community Legal Centres (Tasmania) said in their submission:
“… We are supportive of the Tasmanian Government’s intention to introduce a Tasmanian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (TasCAT) that encompasses many of the existing Tribunals and Boards operating in Tasmania.”
In her speech to Parliament, the Minister outlined the necessary stages for the establishment of TasCAT.
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