Subcontractors Charges Act 1974 - Queensland


The object of this legislative instrument is to provide a statutory remedy in the building industry by which a subcontractor can lodge a charge on monies payable by the employer to the contractor.

The Act applies only to the building industry for the performance of work done upon or in respect of, land or a building, or other structure or permanent improvement upon land or chattel under a subcontract.

Service type

Regulatory Obligation

An obligation defined in law. A business must comply with relevant services.

Publications Details process

  • Security of Payment for Subcontractors (private sector contracts)
  • Security of Payment for Subcontractors:  QBCC (traditional construction contracts)

Lodgement process


Before a subcontractor can claim a charge on money, the claim must be certified by a qualified person within the building industry, as defined in the Act.

If a claim is not accepted and paid it must be enforced by the subcontractor through the courts. Strict time limits apply to the lodging of a charge and to begin court action to enforce it.

Claims may also be made in respect of retention monies.

An employer who fails to retain the required monies is personally liable to pay the amount of the charge to the subcontractor.

A person who claims a charge vexatiously or without reasonable grounds is liable to pay compensation to another person who is affected prejudicially by the claim.

Additional information

The Act is complex in its scope and in the procedure to be followed in claiming a charge. Subcontractors considering a claim should seek prompt legal advice before lodging a claim of charge.

In relation to Queensland Government traditional construction contracts there are certain provisions which further facilitate the provisions of this Act to provide a measure of security of payment for subcontractors.

Information relevant to securing payment for subcontractors in the construction industry through the Building and Construction Industry Payments Act 2004 can be obtained by contacting QBCC. The agency will also assist with inquiries regarding the operation of the Subcontractors Charges Act 1974.

See resources for downloadable Subcontractors Charges Act 1974 forms.

Appeal process


If a claim prejudicially affects another person it may be modified or cancelled by the court.

An appeal may be made against the decision of the court.

Administering agency

Queensland Building and Construction Commission

Contact details

Contact Email, Phone and Address Details for this service in simple two column table format, header then data.

Please use these contact details for help or more information:

Customer Contact Centre

Queensland Building and Construction Commission

Operating address: 299 Montague Road
West End
Queensland 4101
Mailing address: GPO Box 5099
Queensland 4001
Phone: 139 333
Fax: 07 3225 2999
Website: Queensland Building and Construction Commission (Opens in new window)