13 May 2018
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice
The Territory Labor Government has delivered important reforms by passing the Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill.
The Attorney General Natasha Fyles said Territorians want and deserve a government they can trust – one that always puts them first.
“We want to ensure that information recorded on databases is fair and accurate for the benefit of both landlords and tenants,” she said.
“These legislative reforms deliver that fairness and certainty for Territorians.
“The absence of regulation on the use of residential tenancy databases in the Territory had created risks for Territorians. There was the potential for inaccurate or inappropriate database listings to be made about them.
“The changes to the Residential Tenancies Act bring the NT into line with all other Australian jurisdictions, ensuring that Territorians who rent have the same rights and protections as other Australians.”
Ms Fyles said personal information held on residential tenancy databases can have serious consequences in determining whether a person can secure adequate and appropriate rental accommodation.
She said these changes do not add any additional regulations on a landlord’s ability to rent a residential property – rather, they only govern the management of information on databases.
The Northern Territory Civil and Administrative Tribunal is empowered to hear disputes about the use of databases and the information recorded in them.
Landlords, agents and database operators will be provided three months to review and modify existing database entries to ensure they comply with the new framework.
Minister Fyles said a broader review of the Residential Tenancy Act is planned.
“A full public review of the Act, including community and stakeholder consultation, will take place later this year,” she said.
Media contact: Sara Trenerry 0418 973 602