NCAT can review decisions made by NSW Revenue about tax assessments and some types of State grants.
State revenue cases are managed through NCAT's Administrative and Equal Opportunity Division.
NCAT can review decisions made by NSW Revenue about duties, first home benefits, land tax, parking space levies, payroll tax and regional relocation grants.
The letter from NSW Revenue will tell you whether NCAT can review the decision. Visit the NSW Revenue website for more information about state revenue decisions.
You can apply to either NCAT or the NSW Supreme Court for a review of these decisions. If you are considering going directly to the Supreme Court you should seek legal advice.
How to apply
Download and complete an Administrative review application form (PDF , 70.3 KB) and lodge with the application fee at any NCAT Registry Office.
You must lodge your application within 60 days of receiving the Determination of Objection from the Chief Commissioner of Revenue NSW .
If the Chief Commissioner fails to respond to your objection within the 90 day time period, you can apply to NCAT at any time after that.
If you apply outside of the time limit, you can request a time extension as part of your application. NCAT will not always agree to a request for a time extension.
Steps in a state revenue case
Step by step guide to applying to NCAT for the review of a state revenue decision
Revenue NSW will tell you if its decision can be reviewed by NCAT.
If you are unsure whether NCAT can review a decision, you may need to get legal help or check the list of relevant legislation to see whether NCAT has the power to review the decision.
Before you can apply to NCAT, you must lodge an objection with the NSW Revenue within 60 days of being given the decision or notice of assessment.
The Chief Commissioner will consider the objection and respond with a Determination of Objection.
If you do not agree with Revenue NSW's Determination of Objection you can apply to NCAT to review the decision.
If you have not received a response to your written objection from the Chief Commissioner within 90 days, you need to give the Commissioner 14 days written notice of your intention to lodge an application in NCAT. There is no specific form for this notice.
You can either present your own case to NCAT or have a lawyer or non-lawyer agent represent you. You will usually need to attend the hearing to give your instructions to your lawyer or agent.
Your lawyer or agent needs complete a Notice of Representation and submit to NCAT in person or by post. If a non-lawyer agent is representing you, you also need to sign the Notice before it is submitted. In both cases, you have to send a copy of the Notice to the Children's Guardian.
Your agent needs to ask for permission to represent you from the Tribunal Member the next time the case is listed. You should attend with the agent in case NCAT does not allow the agent to appear for you. A lawyer does not need to ask for permission from the Member.
Complete the Administrative review application form and pay the relevant application fee. Include the following information with your application:
- Your name, address and telephone number
- Date of the original decision and the Determination of Objection
- Copy of the original decision and the Determination of Objection (sent to you by Revenue NSW)
- Brief outline of why you think the decision is wrong
Make three copies of your completed application form.
Do you need an urgent stay of the decision?
While you wait for NCAT to review the decision, Revenue NSW's decision will still have effect. You must still pay any amounts when due or make arrangements with Revenue NSW to pay in instalments.
You can ask for a stay of Revenue NSW's decision until NCAT decides the case. This is called an application for a stay.
You will receive a notice of listing from NCAT with a date for a directions hearing. NCAT will send a copy of your application to Revenue NSW.
During the directions hearing, a member of NCAT will talk to you and a representative from Revenue NSW about the options for resolving your case. The member will consider whether to include a mediation in the timetable. If the matter is complex, the member may also direct the parties to prepare a statement of issues document or provide expert or lay evidence. The Chief Commissioner of Revenue NSW, in settling proceedings, must have a reasonable basis to do so in fact and law.
Revenue NSW will provide you and NCAT with a copy of all the documents in their possession that are considered relevant to the decision within 28 days of receiving your application from the Tribunal. These are sometimes called 'section 58' documents.
The member will direct you to give NCAT and the Chief Commissioner submissions and evidence including statements, documents and any reports from experts. The usual time allowed for this is 4 weeks but a shorter or longer time may be given. The member will direct the Chief Commissioner to give you and NCAT his submissions and evidence in response. The usual time allowed for this is a further 4 weeks. You will usually be given a further 2 weeks to put on evidence and submissions to reply to any evidence or submissions of the Chief Commissioner. The reply must be given to NCAT and the Chief Commissioner. It should not deal with any matters other than those in the Chief Commissioner's materials unless you get permission (leave) from NCAT.
Depending on the complexity of the issues, the matter should be ready for a hearing 4 to 6 months after you lodged the application.
If you want to ask for a summons to be issued, you should raise this with the Member at the directions hearing.
Prepare your evidence and submissions to support your objections. Your documents may include statements or affidavits, legal submissions, references to legal authorities, cases and legislation.
Make sure you provide copies of your documents to NCAT and Revenue NSW within the timeframe set at the directions hearing.
NCAT’s hearings are less formal than court hearings. Generally, you and the representative from Revenue NSW will be asked to give a short summary of your arguments.
Usually Revenue NSW will present its evidence first and then it will be your turn to present your evidence. Both parties will have an opportunity to make oral submissions about the findings of fact that NCAT should make and the meaning of the law that should be applied.
In some cases, the Tribunal Member will give their decision at the end of the hearing. However, in most cases the Member will need time to consider the case and will give their decision at a later date. You will usually receive the decision in less than 3 months. Complex matters may take longer.
The orders will be posted to the parties and the reasons for decision will appear on the NSW Caselaw website.
NCAT can make various decisions including:
- confirming or revoking the assessment or other decision to which the application relates
- substituting a different assessment or decision
- ordering a person to pay the Chief Commissioner any amount of tax that has been assessed as being payable
- sending the matter back to the Chief Commissioner to determine again.
The laws that give NCAT power to review decisions of the Chief Commissioner of State Revenue are listed below.
- Administrative Decisions Review Act 1997
- Taxation Administration Act 1996
- Betting Tax Act 2001
- Duties Act 1997
- Gaming Machine Tax Act 2001
- First Home Owner Grant (New Homes) Act 2000
- Health Insurance Levies Act 1982
- Insurance Protection Tax Act 2001
- Land Tax Act 1956
- Land Tax Management Act 1956 (does not include land valuation disputes heard by the NSW Land and Environment Court)
- Parking Space Levy Act 2009
- Payroll Tax Act 2007