Recent Cases

Young v Chief Executive Officer (Housing) [2023] HCA 31 (01 November 2023) (Kiefel CJ; Gageler, Gordon, Edelman and Gleeson JJ)


Residential tenancies – Where s 122(1) of Residential Tenancies Act 1999 (NT) (“Act”) relevantly provided Civil and Administrative Tribunal of the Northern Territory (“Tribunal”) may order compensation for loss or damage suffered by landlord or tenant under tenancy agreement be paid by other party because other party failed to comply with agreement – Where tenancy agreement between parties prescribed by Act – Where term of tenancy agreement imposed by s 49(1) of Act required landlord to take reasonable steps to provide and maintain locks and other security devices necessary to ensure premises and ancillary property were reasonably secure – Where premises had no back door for 68 months – Whether Tribunal empowered by s 122(1) to order landlord compensate tenant for loss or damage by way of distress and disappointment due to insecurity tenant felt because of landlord’s breach of tenancy agreement – Whether s 122 incorporated common law principles of remoteness – Whether common law principles of remoteness precluded tenant from recovering compensation for distress and disappointment unless consequent upon physical inconvenience.

Words and phrases – “breach of contract”, “causation”, “compensation for loss or damage”, “damages”, “disappointment”, “distress”, “insecurity”, “landlord”, “peace of mind”, “reasonable steps”, “reasonably secure”, “remoteness”, “residential premises”, “residential tenancy”, “scope of duty”, “security device”, “statutory compensation”, “tenancy agreement”.