Strata scheme living provides a variety of conveniences for unit owners. However, living in such close proximity to others can give rise to disputes and significant administrative burdens.
We advise lot owners, strata committees and owners corporations in relation to:
- Claims against builders and developers for rectification of minor and/or major defects.
- Making and defending claims involving breaches of section 106 of the Strata Schemes Management Act (ie. breach of the duty to repair and maintain common property).
- Making and defending claims for compulsory strata management under section 237 of the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015.
- Advising on prospects of success in NCAT strata disputes matters.
- Appearing at interim hearings and final hearings at the New South Wales Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT).
- Making and defending claims for unauthorised works to common property.
- Application for or revocation of interim orders
- Making and defending claims involving breaches of by-laws including, but not limited to, flood damage, pets, noise complaints, smoking, damage to common property, defective lifts and car lifts/ car stackers.
Case Study: Owners Corporation Failure to Maintain Common Property
Ms Smith’s kitchen suffered significant damage as a result of water ingress from her upstairs’ neighbour’s balcony. Water was found to be entering through the wall behind the kitchen tiles due to eroded waterproofing.
Under Section 106 of the Strata Schemes Management Act the Owners Corporation of each strata scheme have a duty to:
- ‘properly maintain and keep in a state of good and serviceable repair the common property’; and
- ‘renew or replace any fixtures or fittings comprised in the common property and any personal property vested in the owners corporation.’
Ms Smith had a claim against the Owners Corporation for damage suffered as a result of the Owners Corporation’s failure to maintain the common property. Ms Smith’s $20,000.00 kitchen was replaced at the expense of the Owner Corporation after correspondence was sent raising the prospect of her bringing a damages claim in NCAT.
It is important to note that a lot owner may only bring an action for an Owners Corporation breach within 2 years of becoming aware of any damage. As such, it is imperative that one obtain legal advice as soon as damage is done to a lot interior as a result of defective common property.
If you believe you may be in need of a strata disputes lawyer, contact us today.