Strata Reforms: Enforcing By-laws by issuing notices to comply is now more attractive

Car parking monopoly

Previously, if an owners corporation wanted to enforce its by-laws it had two choices. These were:

  • To issue a notice to comply and, if the behaviour continued to make an application to NCAT for penalty orders for up to $550; or
  • To make an application for Strata Schemes Adjudicator’s orders that a by-law has been breached or the behaviour complained of (for instance piano playing at 2am) constituted a nuisance and, if the behaviour continued after an Order was made, to make an application for penalty orders of up to $5,500.

Post 30 November 2016, the role of a Strata Schemes Adjudicator is no more and all applications must be made directly to NCAT. This means that now, to enforce a by-law an orders corporation must either:

  • issue a notice to comply and, if the behaviour continued to make an application to NCAT for penalty orders; or
  • make an application to NCAT for orders that a by-law has been breached or the behaviour complained of (for instance depositing rubbish on the common property) constituted a nuisance and, if the behaviour continued after an order was made, to make an application for penalty orders.

The first option, issuing a notice to comply, is now much, much, more attractive to owners corporations as:

  1. The maximum penalty has increased from $550 to $1,100 for the first breach; and
  2. The maximum penalty for a second breach within 12 months of the first order is now $2,200; and
  3. The penalty is payable to the owners corporation unless the NCAT orders otherwise.

This means that not only is the person breaching the by-laws hit harder in the hip pocket but that the owners corporation would generally receive payment of the penalty. The penalty if it is unpaid is to be dealt with in the same way as if a contribution had not been paid.

For more hints and tips on enforcing by-laws see our website http://www.kerinbensonlawyers.com.au or my previous posts, although the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 now applies the principles remain the same:

https://allisonbensonau.com/2015/05/31/when-your-home-isnt-necessarily-your-castle-by-laws-rules-what-are-they-who-do-they-bind-can-they-be-enforced/

https://allisonbensonau.com/2016/08/12/enforcing-by-laws-can-the-owners-corporation-impose-a-fine-or-penalty/

One response to “Strata Reforms: Enforcing By-laws by issuing notices to comply is now more attractive

  1. Pingback: Enforcing By-laws by Issuing Notice to Comply With A By-Law NSW·

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