Fire and Emergency Dispute Resolution Scheme

Adjudication
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The adjudication process is a determinative process. This means that an independent ICRA adjudicator will issue a legally binding determination of the matters in dispute after considering any relevant evidence and submissions put forward by the parties.

ICRA is entirely independent of Fire and Emergency, and our adjudicators are all highly experienced and independent professionals.

What does adjudication involve?

At the start of the adjudication, the adjudicator will speak with the parties to agree a timetable and any procedural arrangements.

Your adjudication may involve:

  • An exchange of position papers and evidence
  • An in-person or virtual hearing, where you can speak to the adjudicator and put your case to them, and ask questions of any other party and their witnesses
  • Taking external expert advice
  • Appointment of an investigator
  • Requests for further information or documents and responses to those

Our specialist case managers manage the adjudication process. A case manager will be assigned to your case to ensure you have one point of contact throughout the adjudication. You can be confident that your adjudication will always be handled respectfully and professionally.

What are the outcomes of adjudication?

At the end of the adjudication, the adjudicator will decide the matters in dispute and issue a determination.  This determination is binding on the parties, which means that you must comply with it.

Adjudicators have a range of powers under the Fire and Emergency Scheme.  These include giving directions to:

  • apologise
  • give reasons for the decision made
  • comply with the Act
  • pay compensation of up to $15,000 for any harm or loss suffered
  • take steps necessary to redress another party for any loss or damage suffered

If you are successful in an adjudication, the adjudicator might also direct the other party to pay your reasonable costs as part of the compensation of up to $15,000 (for example, your legal costs or the costs of obtaining expert advice/opinion on a technical matter).

If you are a volunteer who has appealed an incapacity decision under section 33 of the Act, the adjudicator can also direct Fire and Emergency to reinstate you to your former position or a position no less advantageous to you.

Reviewing or appealing an adjudication determination

If you are not satisfied with the adjudicator’s determination, you may be able to apply for a review of that determination or appeal to the District Court.

Review by an ICRA reviewer

You can apply for a review of that determination if you consider that:

  • the adjudication process was unfair
  • the adjudicator has made a material error of fact or law
  • new information has become available, which was not reasonably discoverable before the adjudication was completed

If you want to review an adjudication determination, you need to complete a review application form and send it to us.  You must complete your application within 25 working days of receiving notice of the determination. Late applications will not be accepted.

If you apply for a review, ICRA will appoint a new adjudicator to undertake a review of your determination.  If you are not satisfied with the reviewer’s decision, you can appeal to the District Court.

Appeal to the District Court

You can appeal an adjudicator’s determination, or a reviewer’s decision, to the District Court.

Your appeal must be lodged with the District Court within 20 working days after the date of the decision.

Fast-track adjudication

Some issues are time critical.  If you think your dispute needs a quick resolution, you can apply for fast-track adjudication.

When you make an application, you need to tell us why you think your matter is time-critical and the date you need a determination made.  ICRA will decide whether to accept your application for fast-track adjudication. If the matter is not time critical, it may be dealt with by general adjudication.

If we accept your application for fast-track adjudication:

  • An adjudicator will be appointed within 2 working days of your application being approved
  • A determination will be issued by the approved date

If we do not accept your application for fast-track adjudication or approve a different date to that requested by you, we will tell you why. If the matter is not time-critical, it may be dealt with by general adjudication rather than fast-track adjudication.

About the Fire and Emergency dispute resolution Scheme

Learn more about the Scheme

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