Building complaints and disputes

Complain about professional misconduct or a breach of building law

This page has information about how to complain if you believe a registered building practitioner has broken building laws, has carried out work in a negligent or incompetent way, or is otherwise guilty of professional misconduct.

How to make a complaint

To complain you can write a letter, email, or fill in the complaint form.

Complaint form DOCX (52.4 KB)
Complaint form PDF (174.0 KB)

Your complaint must include the following:

  • your name, address and telephone number or email address
  • a concise summary of your complaint
  • what you have done to try and resolve your complaint and the result
  • the outcome you are seeking.

Submit your complaint or completed complaint form to the Director of Building Control using the contact details below.

The director may ask you for more information such as photographs or statements to assist the investigation.

Director of Building Control



08 8999 8985


GPO Box 1680
Darwin NT 0801


Level 1 Energy House
18 - 20 Cavanagh Street
Darwin NT 0800

If there is evidence of a breach of law

The director can decide to prosecute the building practitioner in the courts if they believe there has been an offence under the Building Act or Regulations.

You may be asked to give a formal statement and attend court as a witness.

If there is evidence of professional misconduct

If there is evidence of professional misconduct the director must refer the matter to the Building Practitioners Board.

The board monitors building practitioners to make sure they meet their registration requirements.

If the matter is referred, the board must conduct an inquiry into the work and conduct of a practitioner, and can discipline practitioners found guilty of professional misconduct.

You may be asked to give a formal statement and attend as a witness before an inquiry panel of the board.

The Building Practitioners Board can:

  • inquire into evidence received from the director as a result of an investigation
  • decide whether a practitioner is guilty of professional misconduct, negligence or incompetence
  • reprimand a practitioner
  • require a practitioner to pay the director’s costs of an inquiry
  • require the practitioner to enter into an undertaking to do something or not do something - for example, providing additional information to the board, attending a course, or to refrain from carrying out specific work for a period of time
  • suspend the practitioner’s registration
  • cancel the practitioner’s registration
  • require the practitioner to pay a civil penalty to the Territory that does not exceed 40 penalty units.

To find out more about penalty units, go to the Department of the Attorney-General and Justice website.

The Building Practitioners Board can't:

  • consider consumer guarantee disputes
  • order the return of a progress payment
  • order a practitioner to undertake rectification work
  • order compensation
  • order unfinished work to be completed.

For more information, go to the Building Practitioners Board website.

Read more about how to:

What the director can't do

The director can't consider contractual disputes.

The director can't order any of the following:

  • the return of a progress payment
  • a practitioner to undertake rectification work
  • compensation
  • unfinished work to be completed.

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Last updated: 04 September 2020

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