Proxy Farming Under the New NSW Strata Law
Savina YangApril 27th, 2017
What is proxy farming? If you happen to live in a strata title property, you may have heard of “proxy farming”, “proxy harvesting” or “stacking votes”. These terms all describe a process whereby one or more owners (a.k.a. the proxy farmers) of a strata scheme approach or persuade other owners, who are generally less active […]
When does my strata management agreement end under the new law?
Savina YangMarch 30th, 2017
The Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 (“Act”) has made significant changes to the way strata managing agents are appointed by owners corporations. Under section 50 of the Act, if a strata managing agent is appointed at the first AGM, the term of appointment must not be for more than 12 months. In any other case, […]
Renovation Works – NSW Strata Law Reforms
Savina YangAugust 30th, 2016
The new Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 (NSW) (“Act”) and the Strata Schemes Management Regulation 2016 (NSW) (“Regulation”) will commence on Wednesday, 30 November 2016. The new law has introduced a more simplified approval process for lot owners who want to carry out certain renovation works at their lots. In today’s article, we will explore the […]
The Power of an Executive Committee to Settle Proceedings on behalf of the Owners Corporation
Bianca BarryAugust 30th, 2016
In the case of The Owners- Strata Plan No 57164 v Yau  recently decided in the Supreme Court of NSW, an Owners Corporation attempted to argue that a decision of the executive committee to settle proceedings was invalid, on the basis that the executive committee meeting at which the decision was made was not […]
NCAT weighs in on the section 80D debate – ratifying legal action in later general meeting
Amanda FarmerJune 26th, 2014
While the NSW Court of Appeal considers arguments in the Bakkante and Elizabeth Bay Road cases, the NCAT has decided the same question in Brodyn Pty Ltd v Auscore Pty Ltd  NSWCATCD 22 (5 March 2014).
In summary, the Tribunal has followed the Supreme Court’s decision in the Elizabeth Bay Road case, finding that it is possible for the general meeting to ratify the commencement of legal proceedings otherwise in breach of section 80D of the Strata Schemes Management Act.
When the executive committee “only have themselves to blame”
Amanda FarmerMarch 19th, 2014
“I should not allow these proceedings to expand by the introduction of greater complexity, more reasons for lining the pockets of lawyers and more grounds to occupy the time of the Court of Appeal. The members of the executive committee only have themselves to blame.”
These are the closing words of Justice Pembroke of the Supreme Court of NSW, confronted once more with a case he thought he had dismissed back in June 2013.
Doesn’t the strata manager do that? The consequences of delegating power
Georgia Kate MorganFebruary 13th, 2014
The short answer is: not necessarily. No lot owner, executive committee or owners corporation should assume that their strata manager will automatically carry out particular managerial tasks, merely because they are ‘the strata manager’. The duties and responsibilities of strata managers differ from one strata scheme to the next and depend on the functions which the owners corporation has delegated […]
When can an owners corporation commence legal action without the approval of the General Meeting?
Georgia Kate MorganDecember 18th, 2013
Section 80D of the Strata Schemes Management Act (“the Act”) requires an owners corporation to pass a resolution in general meeting before seeking legal advice or the provision of any other legal services, or initiating legal action for which any payment may be required. There is an exemption to this requirement in Regulation 15 of the Strata Schemes Management Regulation: section 80D does not apply if the reasonably estimated cost of seeking the legal advice, having the legal services provided or taking the legal action would not exceed (a) $1000 for each lot in the strata scheme; or (b) $12,500 in total – whichever is the lesser.
Executive committees (and lawyers) beware: section 80D of the Act
Amanda FarmerSeptember 25th, 2013
The Owners Strata Plan 70798 v Bakkante Constructions Pty Ltd is a case about the relationship between an executive committee and an owners corporation, specifically in the context of an owners corporation taking legal advice and commencing legal action. Section 80D of the Strata Schemes Management Act (“the Act”) imposes certain restraints on the executive committee’s conduct in these circumstances.