Domestic Building Dispute Resolution Victoria

Free independent Victorian government agency to help resolve residential building disputes between builders and home owners

The Victorian State Government has launched a new agency, Domestic Building Dispute Resolution Victoria (DBDRV). DBDRV provides compulsory mediation for disputes between owners and builders, with the intent to divert these cases from reaching the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).

The free service covers disputes arising from works within the last 10 years that have never been to VCAT, and has the power to issue binding orders.

DBDRV is an independent government agency that provides free services to help resolve domestic (residential) building disputes. It is a business unit of the Department of Justice and Regulation and has been established under the Domestic Building Contracts Act 1995.

This service was established to resolve building disputes without the cost and time often associated with courts and tribunals.

DBDRV’s services are impartial and available to building owners, builders and, in some circumstances, architects and sub-contractors.

DBDRV focus on conciliation, which involves bringing both parties together to discuss and resolve matters in dispute. DBDRV can also appoint qualified expert assessors to conduct building assessments to assist the resolution process.

If conciliation does not resolve the dispute, DBDRV’s Chief Dispute Resolution Officer has the power to issue binding dispute resolution orders and certificates.

DBDRV can help resolve disputes concerning:

  • construction
  • alterations and renovations
  • extensions
  • associated building work such as garages, driveways, swimming pools and spas
  • demolition; and
  • some types of home repairs.