Legal

Legal articles relating to legislation, disputes and civil suits

The interim orders in Watermark Residences [2020] QBCCMCmr 306 provides some relief for bodies corporate that held virtual general meetings during the COVID-19 restrictions. In summary: The body corporate called an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) to agree on the matters that needed to be decided at a general meeting. To meet COVID-19 social distancing restrictions the committee decided to conduct the EGM without physical attendance. There were some other minor deficiencies with how the EGM was called, and was to be held, that did not strictly comply with the legislative requirements of holding meetings. A group of owners sought to invalidate the EGM based on the failureRead More →

Contributed By: Hynes Legal on

I want to give people some insight as to my reasons for joining Hynes Legal and in particular, why I strongly believe the strata industry needs a mediation offering to help reduce the instance of strata disputes in the Commissioner’s Office and QCAT. I’ll begin with a question I’ve been asked a few times since starting with Hynes in February 2020: why would someone pay you to do something that you previously did for free? It’s because of cases like this one. In summary, it’s a dispute heard in the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal about management rights. In total, both sides – the bodyRead More →

I remember after the GFC I said something like, wow, now I’ve seen everything.   Wrong! We understand that these are challenging times.  I use the term challenging because really scary and uncertain just sounds too confronting! Please know that we are here for our clients and indeed anyone who needs us.  Having said that the banks have indicated that to expedite positive outcomes they are dealing directly with broker introduced borrowers and that’s fine.  If you need to us to support your case and liaise with your banker, we are here.  If you feel your bank is not stepping up please understand that they areRead More →

Contributed By: Hynes Legal on

The background Law can be a very dry occupation. As long as you are not on the receiving end of them, some of the lines in legal judgments can be somewhat amusing. One of the best judgments in recent times was the striking out of the bulk of Mark Latham’s defamation defence, but the judgment in this decision started with: ‘In his notes for a law lecture dated 1 July 1850, Abraham Lincoln wrote: Discourage litigation. Persuade your neighbours to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser – in fees, expenses, and waste of time.’ If you were inRead More →

Contributed By: Hynes Legal on

Have you ever wondered what happens when a lot owner starts short term letting and it affects the ability of the body corporate to get the required statutory insurance? If so, you might want to read this the story about a dispute between owners of a two-lot scheme in North Queensland and what an adjudicator decided about those particular circumstances. We have previously written about the statutory insurance requirements for bodies corporate. The facts of this insurance dispute were relatively simple. Beach Meet is a two lot scheme regulated by the Small Schemes Module One owner started short term letting via Air BnB The body corporate insuranceRead More →

Contributed By: Short Punch & Greatorix on

A Townsville Management Rights operator has lost their management rights because of failure to comply with the BCCM Act.  On 10 July 2019 Adjudicator Barry declared that body corporate committee resolutions from 2015 consenting to the transfer of management rights were void… Accordingly, the current management rights operator did not own the management rights, despite having performed the caretaking duties, and having been paid for doing so, for almost 4 years. The Adjudicator’s decision was the latest in a line of decisions dealing with the management rights for Allure Apartments CTS 46322 in Townsville.  On 26 September 2018 another Adjudicator had declared the letting agreementRead More →

Contributed By: John Punch of Short Punch & Greatorix Lawyers on

Lawyers acting for buyers of Management Rights are often faced with the task of trying to explain to their clients problems which they may face as a result of badly worded Caretaking and Letting Agreements.  Much of this could be avoided if developers and their advisers took more care in preparing these agreements. Developers have a golden opportunity to set up Management Rights in a way that will not create difficulties for building managers. The developer is in complete control of the Body Corporate at the time the original Caretaking and Letting Agreements are put in place.  Unfortunately where the developer’s lawyers are not managementRead More →

Back when real estate wasn’t as expensive, multipliers weren’t as high and banks didn’t care as much about serviceability as they did security, buying a lot with a business all worked without much of an issue. That has changed (noticeably for high value real estate with shorter term management rights agreements), which has led to us receiving lots of requests from clients about separating their lot from their management rights business.  Every management rights business is different. There are no hard and fast rules, but in general terms, these are the issues that come if you want to consider doing breaking that link. Let’s startRead More →

Contributed By: Short Punch & Greatorix on

Even a casual observer of the Industrial Law landscape in the post-Work Choices era, will recognise the diversity of employment options that now prevail in modern workplaces. Part of this has been a consequence of the increasing casualisation of the Australian workforce.  This was seen by the Fair Work Commission as a necessary counter-balance to the rights of workers that were gradually being eroded through the trend of casualisation. However, the modern Industrial Law landscape has nevertheless provided certain benefits for employees, through the Modern Award system, and through the evolution of the National Employment Standards (NES). Modern Awards contain a generic or template AwardRead More →

Contributed By: Hynes Legal on

The question about how to adjust contribution schedule lot entitlements (‘the CSLE’) that has been kicking around strataland since September 2012 has finally been put to rest. The complete article we wrote on the issue at the time is here. In practical terms, no one will be able to adjust the CSLE unless there is a resolution without dissent at a general meeting. This is a resolution which no one votes against (as opposed to one which everyone votes for). Any CLSE adjustment means that some levies will go up and others will go down because the body corporate budget never changes. What adjusting lot entitlementsRead More →