When an investigator can prove that a breach happened, they take into consideration several factors when deciding what action to take. These can include:
- the seriousness of the breach
- the level of harm to the customer
- the previous history of the offender
- whether the offender was dishonest in their actions.
The investigator may use one of the following tools to achieve compliance or to act as a deterrent.
Notice of non-compliance
The RTA may issue a Notice of non-compliance where there is no history of non-compliance, where it is an isolated instance, or there are other mitigating circumstances. The notice reminds the party of their legislative requirements under the Act and the outcome for any future breaches of the same section of the Act may result in further enforcement actions. More information is available on Notice on non-compliance.
Penalty Infringement Notices (PIN)
A PIN is a monetary fine that the RTA may issue to an individual or an organisation for committing an offence against the Act. A PIN may be issued for more serious offences that are not suitable for prosecution and where there is deliberate and repeated non-compliant behaviour. More information is available on Penalty Infringement Notices.
Prosecutions are pursued for serious matters or systemic non-compliant conduct and litigation is in the public interest. In very serious cases the RTA may commence criminal proceedings against an individual or corporation in the Magistrates Court. This is a different legal avenue to an unresolved tenancy disagreement or breach of agreement which would proceed to the Queensland Civil Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) where unresolved tenancy disagreements can be heard.
If the other party is found guilty, the RTA may publish the court results for consumer protection and to encourage voluntary compliance with the Act through increased awareness. More information is available on Prosecutions.
Parties to an investigation can request a formal review of the decisions and the process if they are dissatisfied with the outcome.