An issues paper was recently released by a team engaged by the
Queensland Government to review the Body Corporate and
Community Management Act 1997 (Qld). It is accessible
The deadline for making a submission is fast-approaching (30
January 2015). If you haven't had the time to read the 65 page
issues paper, here is a summary of some of the issues it
Should bodies corporate have the power to tow vehicles?
Any committees that currently tow vehicles owned by occupiers
run the risk that they could be ordered to return the vehicle and
pay for any loss or damage. The alternative is to take the slow
path through the Commissioner's Office for an adjudicator's
order to address the by-law contravention.
The industry consensus seems to favour the power to tow, but
should the power be delegated to a single committee member or the
building manager, or should the entire committee have to make the
Bodies corporate may be allowed to adopt 'no pets' and
'no smoking' by-laws by resolution without dissent.
That may not change anything in schemes where there are already
pets or smokers as they will just vote against the new by-law.
However, it may assist new developments to clearly market
themselves as pet-free or smoke-free buildings.
There has been significant pressure in the industry over the
last few years to remove 'no pets' by-laws and replace them
with permissive by-laws to fall into line with the current law. It
will be interesting to see whether those bodies corporate that
refused to change their 'no pets' by-law (which are
currently not lawful) will also have to pass a resolution without
dissent to ensure the blanket ban is effective.
Should committees be able to issue fines for by-law
At the moment a maximum penalty of just over $2,000 can only be
imposed by the Magistrates Court if a contravention notice is not
complied with, but that very rarely happens. Allowing committees to
issue fines would encourage greater compliance with the by-laws,
but that power comes with risks. Two questions that follow are:
Firstly, if a fine is issued because of a tenant's
behaviour, should the fine be recoverable against the owner? That
could bring an end to investor-owners ignoring complaints from
committees and building managers about their tenants.
Secondly, if a person who receives a fine successfully overturns
it in the Commissioner's Office, should they be able to recover
the costs they incur in bringing that application? That could make
committees accountable if they use this power a too
Should it be easier to terminate schemes with aging buildings
and allow new development in its place?
At the moment a scheme can only be terminated by (a) a
resolution without dissent accompanied by an agreement between all
stakeholders or (b) an order of the District Court of
Both are difficult paths to take. The issues paper explores
reducing the threshold for owners to approve termination of schemes
that have ageing buildings down to as low as only 75% of voters
agreeing to it.
The paper has not given any indication of whether there will be
any changes to the lot entitlements regime. We anticipate that
controversial topic will be left until after the election on 31
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.
Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.
Many retail leases include a covenant to trade, requiring the tenant to open the premises for trade during certain hours.
Some comments from our readers… “The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable” “I often find critical information not available elsewhere” “As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).