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Tribunal: Deputy President S Boyle

The applicant is a registered training organisation and the respondent is the Australian Skills Quality Authority. Following an audit which found the applicant to be non-compliant with certain requirements of the legislation, the Chief Commissioner of the respondent cancelled the applicant’s registration. The applicant applied to the AAT for a review of the decision to cancel its registration and also applied for a stay of the operation of the decision, to allow the organisation to continue operating pending the finalisation of the review. Under that interim stay order, the applicant could continue to operate but was prohibited from enrolling and training additional students.

In assessing whether to extend the operation of the interim stay order, the AAT considered a number of factors including the prospects of success, the consequences for the applicant if the stay were refused, the public interest, and the detriment to the respondent. The AAT acknowledged the respondent’s claims of the applicant’s history of non-compliance but found there was evidence the applicant was taking genuine steps to address the non-compliances. The AAT also found the applicant provided an important public service to disadvantaged members of society; particularly in the Employment Skills Training (EST) program to regional and indigenous communities. As the largest EST provider in Western Australia, if a stay was not granted, a significant number of students, potential students and employees of the applicant would be affected.

The AAT was satisfied that, taking into account the interests of all of the persons who may be affected, it was appropriate for the existing stay order to remain in place until the Tribunal makes a further order.

Read the full decision on AustLII.