New Protections for Farmers against big Banks

  • Blog
  • New Protections for Farmers against big Banks
View All Articles

Scroll for more

From 1 July 2018, the Farm Business Debt Mediation Act 2017 (Qld) “the Act” will bring about restrictions on mortgagees taking enforcement action under a farm mortgage until parties have conducted mediation.

The purpose of the legislation is to provide an efficient and equitable way for farmers and mortgagees to resolve matters relating to farm business debts, before a mortgagee can take possession and sell the property.

Who does it apply to?

The legislation applies to farms in Queensland. However, Victoria has had similar legislation since 2011 and New South Wales has had similar legislation since 1994. So, Queensland is still catching up!

It applies to all ‘farm mortgages’; which are simply any registered mortgage over farm property. The legislation doesn’t just apply to banks but extends to anyone who has loaned money to a farmer secured by a mortgage over farm property.

What does it require?

Where the legislation applies, a mortgagee is unable to take enforcement action (to say take possession and sell the property), without first serving a notice to the farmer informing them of their intention to take enforcement action and the farmer’s right to request a mediation.

The aim of the mediation is to bring about an agreement between the parties about matters relating to the farm business debt.

When can a bank take enforcement action?

If the farmer fails to mediate or once parties have gone through the mediation process and the mortgagee is still entitled to take enforcement action, then the mortgagee may apply to obtain an exemption certificate. Once they have an exemption certificate, they are able to enforce their mortgage.

Unless the legislation doesn’t apply, or an exemption certificate is not obtained, any enforcement action taken over a farm mortgage has no effect.

Please contact us of you have a mortgage over farm property in Queensland which you would like to enforce or if you are a farmer with a farm mortgage who is needing assistance in dealing with your bank or mortgagee. New protections may be in place but it is important you discuss your legal standing with our team.

The information provided in this article is for general information and educative purposes in summary form on legal topics which is current at the time it is published. The content does not constitute legal advice or recommendations and should not be relied upon as such. Whilst every care has been taken in the preparation of this article, FC Lawyers cannot accept responsibility for any errors, including those caused by negligence, in the material. We make no representations, statements or warranties about the accuracy or completeness of the information and you should not rely on it. You are advised to make your own independent inquiries regarding the accuracy of any information provided on this website. FC Lawyers does not guarantee, and accepts no legal responsibility whatsoever arising from or in connection to the accuracy, reliability, currency, correctness or completeness of any material contained in this article. Links to third party websites or articles does not constitute any endorsement or approval of those sites or the owners of those sites. Nothing in this article should be construed as granting any licence or right for you to use that content. You should consult the third party’s terms and conditions of use in relation to any third-party content. FC Lawyers disclaims all responsibility and all liability (including liability for negligence) for all expenses, losses, damages and costs you might incur as a result of the information being inaccurate or incomplete in any way. Appropriate legal advice should always be obtained in actual situations.


Prefer to get in touch?

With offices in Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and Sydney, our team is well equipped to provide both advice and support across a broad range of legal areas.

Free call 1800 640 509
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.