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Body Corporate Dispute Resolution and Litigation

An unfortunate reality of Bodies Corporate is that they often find themselves embroiled in disputes; be they disputes between lot owners, between the Body Corporate and lots owners or the Body Corporate and third parties, such as builders or developers.

Often these disputes are complicated by their very nature. However, a further layer of complexity is added for Bodies Corporate due to the operation of the Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997 (Qld) and related Regulations, which often dictate particular procedures that must be followed by Bodies Corporates, including:

  • the limits placed on a Committee to make decisions for the Body Corporate;
  • Committee spending limits;
  • the unique processes Bodies Corporate must follow in making decisions – included restricted and non-restricted issues etc.

A Supreme Court judge summed it up best:

"The law relating to community titles schemes is technical and … it is unwise for parties to proceed in disputes of this kind without legal advice, relying merely upon their notions of the justness of their cause."

From the first litigated dispute over lot entitlements back in 2001, our dispute resolution team has worked with a variety of Bodies Corporate to resolve a variety of disputes and is able to expertly traverse the many Acts and Regulations which govern Bodies Corporate.  Our goal is to provide cost-effective solutions and commercial outcomes where possible.

In recent times, Bodies Corporates, particularly in Brisbane and on the Gold Coast, have increasingly found themselves involved in construction disputes with developers or parties contracted by the Bodies Corporate to carry out construction projects.

Our Dispute Resolution team offers a wealth of experience dealing with construction disputes, but also offers expert front end advice in relation to construction contracts. This ranges from our dispute resolution team receiving and reviewing construction contracts before they are entered into and advising Bodies Corporates how they can best be amended to benefit the Body Corporate and limit their risk exposure. The benefit of this service is that it can often avoid disputes before they arise and, where they do arise, ensure that the Body Corporate’s liability is limited as much as possible.

If an issue results in conflict, it is important to know that you have a complete legal team who can seamlessly assist and act for you to resolve the dispute quickly.

Examples of articles where we talk about these issues:

Is it worth getting legal advice on a commissioner’s application?
The commerciality of strata litigation
The Carmel by the Sea decision - what does it actually mean?
Using discretion: Costs orders in QCAT

Frank Higginson

Frank Higginson

Director and Legal Practice Director

Body Corporate
Management Rights
Manufactured Home Parks
Motels