$15,000 fine for Wangara builder

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All announcements issued prior to 1 July 2017 were issued by the former Department of Commerce. Announcements listed here are the latest versions available, but may be subject to review. For more information on this announcement, please contact online@dmirs.wa.gov.au.

Formerly registered Wangara builder Jeffrey West (reg. BP101011 & BC100818 – both expired), the sole trader of Kameleon Homes, has been fined $15,000 and ordered to pay costs of $3,200 by the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) as a result of disciplinary action by the Building Services Board.

The SAT found Mr West had engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct, negligent conduct and failed to comply with one of its orders in connection with carrying out a building service at properties in Joondalup and Kelmscott between 2013 and 2016.

The Joondalup contract was for internal and external renovation work to an existing dwelling to a value of $139,256.70. The Kelmscott contract was for the construction of a new split-level residential dwelling to a value of $485,783.36.

Mr West was misleading or deceptive in that he knowingly provided a document to the SAT as evidence of some of the terms of the Joondalup contract when the document was in fact not part of that contract as formed and contained a forged signature. He was negligent in that he demanded and received a deposit from the Kelmscott owners without first obtaining a policy of home indemnity insurance (HII) for the work. The owners were left $31,575.91 out of pocket and without access to HII when Mr West failed to commence the work on site.

Mr West had also failed to comply with an order of the SAT made in August 2015, which required him to pay the Joondalup owners $50,000 by 13 October 2015.

“This case highlights the importance of consumers not making any payments including deposits without being satisfied that a certificate of home indemnity insurance has been obtained by the builder,” Building Commissioner Peter Gow said.

“Mr West no longer holds a builder registration in Western Australia and is not entitled to contract for or carry out builder work valued over $20,000.

“Consumers should avoid engaging Mr West’s services for building work which requires a registration.”

Not satisfied that Mr West met the legal requirements to maintain his registration, the Building Services Board in August 2016 acted to ensure consumer interests were protected. The Board approved Mr West’s request to voluntarily cancel his building contractor registration and refused his application to renew his building practitioner registration.

At the time the Board also considered a Building Commission investigation into Mr West’s conduct and resolved to pursue this recent disciplinary action against him in the SAT.

A media statement issued by the Building Commission at the time can be read at www.commerce.wa.gov.au/announcements/wa-builder-denied-registration.

Mr Gow said, “The Building Commission will continue to hold to account and name those who put consumer interests and the integrity of the building industry at risk.”

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Media release
11 Jan 2017

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