Claiming for damages

Case advisor speaking with couple about their claim for compensation

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Claiming for damages

If your property is damaged by subsidence as a result of coal mining in NSW, your rights are protected under the Coal Mine Subsidence Compensation Act 2017 and you can claim compensation through Subsidence Advisory NSW (SA NSW).

Further detail on the claims process is provided in the Guidelines - Process for Claiming Mine Subsidence Compensation. This document is an approved procedure under the Coal Mine Subsidence Compensation Act 2017.

Potholes & Emergency Claims

SA NSW operates a 24 Hour Emergency Hotline (1800 248 083) for mine subsidence issues causing safety, security or serviceability concerns. Any mine subsidence safety issue, including pothole subsidence, should be immediately reported to our 24 Hour Emergency Hotline on 1800 248 083. We will coordinate a response to quickly address the issue and remove any danger.

Signs of subsidence damage

Signs of damage from mine subsidence can range from hairline cracks and jammed doors and windows to more significant structural issues. Generally, buildings damaged by mine subsidence remain safe and can be used until they are repaired.

Lodging a claim
Step 1: Lodge your claim

If you think your property has been damaged by mine subsidence, you can lodge a claim for compensation through SA NSW’s online portal. Claims must be lodged within 12 months of the property owner becoming aware that the damage was caused by subsidence. We will acknowledge receipt of all claims within seven days.

 

You can log in to SA NSW’s portal to track and manage your claim at any point in the claims process.

Step 2: Claim management

SA NSW will assign a dedicated Case Advisor to manage your claim from start to finish and provide you with a single, responsive point of contact throughout the process.

After you lodge your claim, your Case Advisor will contact you to explain the claim process:

- Your claim will be assessed by an expert in mine subsidence

- The assessment process may include inspection of the damage, engineering investigations and consideration of whether there has been mining near your property.

- As part of the assessment process, SA NSW will determine if the property is in the zone of a non-active coal mine or an active mining operation.

- If your claim is the result of active mining, SA NSW will involve the relevant mine proprietor at key stages including payment of compensation.

- Your Case Advisor can share with you the expected timeframe to investigate your claim.

- Full assessment of claims in active mining areas may be deferred until subsidence is complete. This is because it possible that the property may sustain further damage as the ground settles.

 

If you have any immediate concerns related to the safety or security of your property, you should advise your Case Advisor right away or call SA NSW’s 24 Hour Emergency Hotline on 1800 248 083.

Outcome
Accepted claims

If your claim is accepted, you will be provided with fair and reasonable compensation. The compensation will be based on an assessment of damage to your property. The assessment may involve independent engineering investigations, quantity surveys, and expert valuations.

Compensation for subsidence damage to properties from non-active coal mines will be paid using a central fund managed by SA NSW. Compensation for subsidence damage arising from an active coal mine will be paid by the relevant mine proprietor. In both cases, SA NSW will coordinate payment of compensation to the property owner.

Refused claims

Under the Coal Mine Subsidence Compensation Act 2017, property owners can only be compensated for damage arising from subsidence resulting from the extraction of coal.

It's important to be aware that damage to homes and structures could be caused by factors other than mine subsidence, such as reactive soils, neraby trees and poor building practice.

Homes and other structures built in a mine subsidence district (district) without Subsidence Advisory NSW approval are not eligible for compensation. Surface improvements that were built before a district was proclaimed are eligible for compensation. Find out more about developing within a district.

Dispute resolution

If you are not satisfied with the outcome of your claim, you have the option to request an independent review by the Secretary of DFSI or their delegate. You can request a review through SA NSW’s portal. Requests for reviews must be made within 3 months of the date the claim was determined.

As part of the request for review, you will be asked to prepare a position statement outlining the nature of your dispute. The determining body, either SA NSW or the mine proprietor, will prepare a position statement in response. Both position statements along with other relevant information will be provided to the Secretary or their delegate to undertake the review.

The Secretary will provide a determination within 3 months of receiving notice of the claimant’s request for review. The determination will include a written summary of the reasons for the decision.

It is important to note that the Secretary’s determination is binding. This means all parties are bound by the Secretary’s determination, i.e. if the Secretary determines that the amount of compensation is less than the original offer, you will not be able to revert to the original offer. However, either party has the option to appeal the Secretary’s decision in the Land and Environment Court.

Court appeals

Under Section 16 of the Coal Mine Subsidence Compensation Act 2017, you have a right of appeal to the Land and Environment Court against a decision:

a) as to whether damage has arisen from subsidence

b) as to the amount of the payment from the Fund

c) where a claim for preventative or mitigative works has been rejected.

Please note that time limits apply for commencing proceedings.

You may also have other rights at law in relation to your claim which you may wish to explore. If so, you should obtain independent legal advice.