Legal

Legal articles relating to legislation, disputes and civil suits

Contributed By: Small Myers Hughes Solicitors on

Licensing A NSW owners corporation may engage a licensed strata managing agent to help manage their strata scheme. Unlike the position in Queensland, only a person who is licensed (under the Property, Stock and Business Agents Act 2002) can be appointed. What are their responsibilities? An owners corporation can choose the responsibilities of their appointed strata managing agent in negotiating the contract with them (apart from where the owners corporation’s powers cannot be delegated). A strata managing agent cannot: delegate their powers, authorities, duties or functions to others; set the contributions to be paid by the owners; make a decision on a restricted matter (aRead More →

Contributed By: Nick Buick on

Under new rules announced on the weekend by the Andrews government, tenants in Victoria will now access a raft of new rights and liberties at the expense of landlords and managers. Among such new laws, landlords are no longer allowed to solicit for higher bids above the advertised rental price on a listing. Bonds will be shrunk to no more than 4 weeks (which is the same as in QLD). Landlords will also be unable to issue a notice to leave at the conclusion of a lease, without a specific reason. By far the biggest shake-up, however, comes in the form of changes to theRead More →

Contributed By: Short Punch & Greatorix on

The extent of services which a body corporate is authorised to provide, and in some cases, must provide, to lot owners, is limited to those set out in the Body Corporate Community Management legislation. Building managers have to be careful that the duties set out in their Caretaking Agreements with bodies corporate, do not stray outside these limits. Section 169 (1) of the Small Module Regulations, and Section 167 (1) permit bodies corporate to provide certain types of services, which are not otherwise covered in the legislation.   Sub sections 2 and 3 of these Sections also provide the body corporate:- must have an agreement withRead More →

Contributed By: SMALL MYERS HUGHES LAWYERS on

Every lot has areas within them that are common property. Consequently, owners wanting to make changes or undertake renovations may require approval from the Owners Corporation and this will depend on the type of renovation required. Renovations fall into three categories: Cosmetic changes – Includes installing or replacing hooks, nails or screws for hanging paintings or other things on common property walls; installing or replacing handrails within your lot; painting; and filling minor holes and cracks in internal walls. Lot owners can do cosmetic work within their lot without seeking approval from the Owners Corporation; Minor renovations – Includes renovating a kitchen; changing recessed light fittings; installingRead More →

Contributed By: Hynes Legal on

Bush lawyers abound out there in strataland. Someone heard from someone else that someone did something or got something and then that becomes the rumour that bounces around endlessly becoming the little spot fire that we then need to put out individually with clients when they ring to ask us: ‘I got told THIS — can we do that too?’ Valuers have it worse though. ‘So and so down the road got 5.6 times for their business so that means mine is worth 5.8 times.’ Leaving aside it was never contracted at 5.6 times in the first place, usually what has happened is the accountantRead More →

Contributed By: TheOnsiteManager.com.au on

Some strata communities – formerly known as Body Corporates – aren’t liable to pay tax. However, this is not applicable to all stratas, and wrongly assuming you are exempt from paying tax can lead to fines and even court proceedings. It’s important to get in the know about strata communities and tax liabilities so you can gauge whether or not you are liable. If you need more information or one-on-one advice about your own situation, it may be worth speaking to a strata specialist with corporate tax knowledge, such as the team at Abacus Strata. Here’s a quick overview of strata related Tax to helpRead More →

Contributed By: SSKB on

Water has an incredible ability to find its way into all sorts of strange places.  In community schemes, this can quickly fudge the outlines of who is responsible for water damage.  So who should you be talking to if you suffer water damage?  And what are you responsible for? For owners in a property with a Building Manager, this person should always be your first port of call in a case of water damage, as they will identify responsibility for repairs.  It is important to recognise responsibility is divided between the Owners Corporation or Body Corporate and individual lot owners.  Bodies corporate/owners corporations are generallyRead More →

Contributed By: Grant Mifsud of Archers the Strata Professionals on

Following on from the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) recommendations released in February 2017, a further 64 “final” recommendations have been released in a recent announcement made by Attorney-General and Minister for Justice and Minister for Training and Skills, The Honourable Yvette D’Ath. The report focuses on procedural issues under the Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997. Of the 64 recommendations, 21 suggest that no changes! To give you an indication of the actual changes recommended, we have summarised these into procedural areas of General Meetings, Committees, Notices, Disputes and General. Highlights of the General Meeting changes focus on deemed service of notices taking into account postage, practical waysRead More →

Contributed By: Hynes Legal on

The Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997 (BCCM Act) sets out a number of spending limits. Some of these intersect with others. Some need to go to general meeting and some depend on the number of lots in the scheme. The rules relating to them are scattered across the relevant Regulation Modules. This article sets them out in one place. The major categories of spending include the: committee spending limit (is a committee or general meeting required?) major spending limit (are two quotes needed?) common property improvement limit (what type of resolution is required depending on who is making the improvement?) The committee spending limit The default position for committeeRead More →

Contributed By: Small Myers Hughes on

I have had a number of managers come to me very concerned that their committee will not support an extension of their caretaking and letting agreements. They have the distinct impression that, if the committee does not support the “top-up”, any extension will not happen. Obviously, a top-up which is supported by the committee will invariably be passed at a General Meeting of the Owners Corporation/Body Corporate. A top-up that is not supported by the committee is going to be much more difficult to pass. However, don’t despair! As an owner of a lot, you have a right to place a motion on the agendaRead More →