When a tenant or landlord breaks the rules

Skip listen and sharing tools

Breach of duty notices

Tenants, residents, landlords and owners all have a responsibility to meet the terms of their rental agreement and the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (the Act).

If one party does not meet their duties under the Act, the other may serve them with a breach of duty notice. This is a formal warning to the party who is not meeting their obligations.

A breach of duty notice must:

  • set out the breach of duty under the Act
  • detail the loss or damage caused by the breach
  • state that the breach must be fixed or compensation paid and that a similar breach must not be committed
  • advise that if there is no compliance with the notice, an application may be made to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) for a compensation or compliance order
  • advise that if the same breach occurs for a third time (and a valid Breach of Duty notice was given for that breach on the first two occasions), a notice of intention to vacate (end the tenancy and leave the property) or a notice to vacate may be given.

If the problem is not fixed within the time set out in the Act (this will vary depending on the particular duty), and an application is made to VCAT, the tribunal will hear the matter and make a decision.

If a person believes a term in a tenancy agreement has not been met, they may apply to VCAT.

Consumer Affairs Victoria provides specific breach of duty forms for tenanted properties, rooming houses (buildings where one or more rooms are available to rent, and four or more people in total can occupy those rooms), caravan parks and site agreements.

Contact Consumer Affairs Victoria for more information on how to issue a breach of duty notice.

Breach of duty forms

From tenant/resident to landlord/owner/agent:

From landlord/owner to tenant/resident: