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Roundup:  Clock ticking on your compulsory by-law review
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JimmyT
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09/10/2017 - 10:58 pm
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Have you  completed your by-laws review yet? What do you mean “what by-law review?”

The NSW strata laws that came in last November gave all owners corporations exactly one year to have a look at their existing by-laws, compare them with new model rules and update them accordingly, if that was appropriate.

What?  You haven’t done it yet?

My goodness!  Didn’t you realise that failure means automatic dissolution of your strata committee – to be replaced by a strata manager chosen at random - and a $1000 fine for everyone who has served on your committee for the past year?

Calm down! Calm down!  I'm joking!

The penalty for not reviewing your by-laws by November 30, as required by Section 4 of Schedule 3 of the strata Act is … not very much. In fact, it’s zero … zip … zilch.

It may be part of strata law but in reality it’s more of a gentle nudge rather than a smack in the chops.  Even if there were Stratakops (which, sadly, there aren’t) they would not be kicking butts and taking names over this issue.

The best you can hope for is that you have another stick with which to beat the rusted-on recalcitrants on your strata committee who tell everyone at your AGM that everything is fine and there’s no need to do anything about anything.

“What about the compulsory review of the by-laws,” you ask?  “Who did it and what did they come up with?”

Blank looks … crickets … and everyone goes back to sleep.

You should be so lucky. Some of our Flatchatters wish everyone would go to sleep in their schemes as the weekly tales of woe mount up.

  • What can you do about a resident who sends nasty notes to her neighbours, blowing trivial issues up into major disputes? That’s HERE.
  • How do you find out the name of the strata manager of a new block next door? That’s HERE.
  • What happens when your council approval and strata plan have a different number of parking spaces? That’s HERE.
  • The electronic key for my garage gate doesn’t work unless I am outside. Who’s responsible? That’s HERE.
  • From the depart of “problems you wish you had”, are you allowed to shift money back and forth between the admin and capital works (sinking) funds when you have too much in one and not enough in the other? That’s HERE.

By the time you read this, there will be a whole new bunch of questions and answers on the Flat Chat Forum. Don’t miss out – it could have the solution to your problems.

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Thor
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10/10/2017 - 12:10 pm
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By-law review / not sure what that means, as Chair will it be sufficient to send an email to all Owners alerting them to be aware of the current Model by-laws and any Bylaws specific to our Strata Plan?

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JimmyT
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10/10/2017 - 12:27 pm
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Thor said
Will it be sufficient to send an email to all Owners alerting them to be aware of the current Model by-laws and any Bylaws specific to our Strata Plan?  

The Act is very non-specific as to what a review is but I would think your suggestion is the absolute minimum.

The ideal situation (in my book) would be to have a special information meeting of all interested owners to discuss the current by-laws and compare them with the model by-laws, with a view to holding a general meeting, if required, to update any by-laws that needed updating.  

At the very least, I would be sending out a copies of:

  • Your previous by-laws (those that were in place until December 1 last year)
  • Your new model by-laws (which changed by default as your building is pre-1996)
  • The model by-laws for newer schemes.

I would point out those that have changed by default and asking if any of your by-laws should be brought up to date with modern thinking as reflected in the new model by-laws for new schemes (pets and smoking being two of the issues).

Generally speaking, I think it helps if we all regard this as an opportunity rather than an imposition.

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