Internal dispute resolution

Certain internal dispute resolution (IDR) procedures are required under the Retirement Villages Act 1986 (RV Act). In 2017, Consumer Affairs Victoria reviewed these requirements and identified possible reforms. These included:

  • introducing a definition of ‘complaint’
  • clarifying requirements around recording complaints
  • requiring any dispute resolution body dealing with a retirement village dispute to consider the extent to which the ‘good practice protocols’ developed by Consumer Affairs Victoria have been followed
  • clarifying in legislation the avenues for complaints about village managers, and
  • removing the role of residents’ committees in resident dispute mediation.

We would like your views on potential improvements to current internal dispute resolution procedures in retirement villages.

Questions for consideration

  1. What are your views on the reform proposals identified by the review of internal dispute resolution procedures in retirement villages outlined in this Paper?

External dispute resolution

In 2017 a Parliamentary Inquiry looked into the retirement housing sector. It recommended the introduction of a low cost, timely and binding dispute resolution service. This recommendation is being considered as part of this review.

Consumer Affairs Victoria has engaged an independent consultant to consider potential models for the retirement village sector. Their report will include a cost-benefit analysis of those models. The findings will contribute to the Government’s consideration of this issue, as will any submissions made in response to the Issues Paper.

We would like your views on potential improvements to the management of, and processes for, external dispute resolution.

Questions for consideration

  1. Should a party to a retirement village dispute seeking access to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) or the Courts be first required to have followed/exhausted the internal dispute resolution procedure?
  2. Should mediation of a dispute through Dispute Resolution Centre of Victoria (DSCV) be a pre-condition of access to VCAT or the courts?
  3. What do you think is the best means to achieve low-cost, timely and binding resolution of disputes in the retirement village sector?