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Owners Corporation Lawyers

At PCL Lawyers we provide advice and dispute resolution assistance in a variety of Owners Corporation related issues.

Our legal team have a deep understanding of Owners Corporations and the various roles, responsibilities and processes. We also have a working understanding of the relationships between owners corporations and their managers, committee members/lot owners and other relevant 3rd parties including insurers.

In the midst of a dispute involving an Owners Corporation, our lawyers have the experience and industry knowledge. We work to quickly identify potential resolutions and confidently advise our clients in order to promote and restore a harmonious environment for both lot owners and managers alike.

Frustrations can easily arise in Owners Corporation legal matters and we take a proactive and commercially minded approach. As experienced Owners Corporation lawyers we assist by providing considered and concise legal advice. We pay attention to competing concerns between various parties and draft robust agreements and documentation. We also consider certain actions potential impacts on the owners corporation and its ability to fulfil its role and operate effectively.

We ensure that our clients are aware and understand the legal framework and their rights and responsibilities. We also work quickly to resolve disputes effectively.

We act for the following parties:

  • Owners Corporation Managers
  • Committee Members and Lot Owners
  • Builders & Property Developers

We can provide concise advice on a broad range of Owners Corporation matters, including but not limited to:

  • Establishing Owners Corporations
  • Tendering process and changeover of Owners Corporation Managers
  • Drafting legally enforceable and tailored Owners Corporation Rules
  • Preparing licences and leases over common property and/or carparks
  • Advising on compliance with statutory procedures
  • Advising on the legal duties of Owners Corporations, Committee Members and Managers including boundary advice and liability assessment
  • Advising on procedural requirements for implementing significant Owners Corporation decisions regarding expensive repair, maintenance or upgrade projects
  • Advising on repair and maintenance costs being raised using the ‘substantial benefit’ principle and/or special levies
  • Drafting Review maintenance plans
  • Tailoring service agreements for building management, concierge services and maintenance contracts etc
  • Advising on changing property boundaries on the plan of subdivision
  • Advising on determining common property versus private lot property
  • Converting stratum or company title and service company properties into Owners Corporations

We can also help resolve disputes, such as:

  • Termination or Removal of Owners Corporation Managers
  • Building Defects
  • Domestic Building Warranty Claims
  • Common Property Disputes
  • Breach Notices
  • Disputes involving Owners Corporations
  • Debt Recovery of Owners Corporation levies and fees in VCAT or Magistrate Court
  • Fencing Disputes and Property Damage or Repairs
  • Insurance Claim Disputes
  • Dealing adjoining property owners or proposed works

The most common owners corporation disputes include disputes between lot owners and owners corporation or building defects effecting common property. As such builders or contractors can be engaged in Owners Corporations disputes. These types of disputes are best handled by lawyers that understand both Owners Corporation rules and laws as well as building and construction laws.

Advising in matter involving Owners Corporation disputes requires specific knowledge and experience. Most matters require knowledge of several different practice areas such as property, commercial, building, environmental and privacy laws.

Appointing or Removing an Owners Corporation Manager

Our lawyers can provide clear advice and help facilitate the process or appointing or changing Owners Corporation managers.

We start by assisting you to ensure that the documentation, agreement and necessary contracts are in order.

There are many reasons for changing Owners Corporation managers. We start by noting those concerns to ensure the new manager will be capable where the old manager was not.

We check that there are legal grounds for the termination and that the termination process is handled correctly. If not, lot owners could be liable for paying two lots of management fees.

It is important when changing OC managers that the process of tendering and appointing a new OC manager is also handled properly. Some properties require a lot of management and maintenance and a delay in appointing a new manager can mean that other issues arise.

There are many hurdles and considerations when changing owners corporation management. It also requires management, time, skills and legal knowledge that can be beyond the capability of many lot owners.

Our lawyers can manage the process from exiting your existing manager to appointing a new manager. We ensure all the necessary contracts, agreements, notices are drafted and executed correctly. We ensure the process is compliant and will not be contested by the outgoing manager.

Voting

Many issues can arise for Owners Corporation managers and lot owners when it comes to annual general meetings, calling and carrying out special general meeting, quorums, voting and special resolutions etc.

When it comes to passing vital decisions, we can provide advice on how to get lot owners to vote on resolutions.

An inactive and unengaged members can pose difficult issues for Owners Corporation Committees and Managers alike.

Building works, repairs and maintenance for common property

When it come to building works, repairs or maintenance of the common property areas it can be difficult to reach consensus.

We can help guide committee members, lot owners and OC managers on what is required and where they stand legally.

It is often worthwhile seeking advice as to what legal rights or obligations you have before you take action for expensive repairs, maintenance or new works.

Converting Stratum or Company Titles to Owners Corporations

Stratum or company titles were very commonplace prior to Owners Corporations coming into place in the 1980s. The older stratum titles are harder for owners to sell as there are limited banks that will lend on such properties.

Instead of having your name registered on a title the owner has a share in the company. They are also a director of the company. The structure is a more complex and there are other legal issues. This and resale value is why stratum owners seek to convert these properties to owners corporations.

The process involves many steps and needs the involvement of all the owners. We can help Owners Corporation managers and owners navigate the process. We work with all the parties to ensure that the new certificate of titles; plan of subdivision and Owners Corporation paperwork is completed quickly and accurately.

Owners Corporations matters in VCAT

Most owners corporation matters are heard in VCAT and we can provide expert representation and advice.

We can help represent parties in VCAT regarding:

  • Enforcing Owners Corporations Rules;
  • Testing the meaning or validity of Owners Corporations Rules;
  • Obtain orders that lot owners comply with their legal obligations;
  • Compliance with statutory procedures for making decisions and validity of decisions;
  • Defending applications by lot owners and occupiers;
  • Debt Collection for outstanding rates and levies;
  • Advice on the merits of prosecuting and defending legal proceedings involving Owners Corporations generally and more.

It vital to get the best results to engage a lawyer that is experienced in handling Owners Corporations matters.

At PCL Lawyers, our owners corporations lawyers in Melbourne, Victoria and interstate have a wealth of experience that will assist you.

We provide concise and commercially sound legal advice to individuals, organisations and businesses.

Contact one of our owners corporation lawyers today to discuss your matter on 1300 907 335.

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Our Locations

Melbourne CBD

Level 15,
440 Collins Street,
Melbourne VIC 3000

Sydney

Level 33,
264 George Street,
Sydney NSW 2000

Chadstone

Level 8,
1341 Dandenong Rd,
Chadstone VIC 3148

Dandenong

Level 2,
311 Lonsdale St
Dandenong VIC 3175

Frankston

Ground Flr,
435 Nepean Hwy
Frankston VIC 3199

Moorabbin

Level 1,
441 South Road
Moorabbin VIC 3189

Preston

Ground Flr,
84 Hotham St,
Preston VIC 3072

Sunshine

Level 5,
12 Clarke Street
Sunshine VIC 3020