LGA

Unregistered premises still causing concern?

Well, it’s that time of the year again – collection of registration applications and fees.

Last year Macpherson Kelley provided this service for a number of our Local Government clients with great success.

In respect of Food premises, Councils particularly need to ensure registration is progressed in a timely manner. This is due to Section 40C of the Food Act which confirms the period of registration is strictly one year for most premises. This is calculated from when registration was last granted/renewed. Delays in registration (and in issuing certificates) may mean Council is unable to take enforcement action and rogue premises get ‘bonus months’ by registering late.

Council has a number of options with respect to unpaid registrations and we can assist in determining what action Council should take. Such action may include sending letters of demand or commencing a prosecution against the proprietor.

LETTER OF DEMAND
For a fee of $50 plus GST we can prepare a letter of demand, specific to each proprietor, requesting payment of registration and the return of the Application for Renewal form. The letter will request that payment is forwarded directly to you within 14 days.

Any payment or enquiry to Macpherson Kelley from a proprietor will be redirected to the nominated Council contact.

CHARGE-SHEET AND SUMMONS
You may want to issue proceedings against the proprietor for trading while unregistered.
We’ll provide you with a check list and an instruction sheet so you can easily prepare a Brief of Evidence to support the charge.

A Charge-Sheet and Summons can be prepared for a fee of $700 plus GST and disbursements, if the matter is resolved before it proceeds to Court. If the proprietor pays the outstanding fee and your legal costs before the matter goes to Court, you may wish for the Charge-Sheet of Summons to be withdrawn and no further fees will apply.

However, if Council wishes to proceed with the prosecution regardless of whether fees are paid or not and/or if the matter is defended and requires further work, our services will be charged at an hourly rate. These additional costs will be discussed with you in advance.

For more information, contact Louisa Dicker, Senior Associate – Litigation and Dispute Resolution.