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  • #54699
    waylor
    Flatchatter

    At our very recent AGM a proxy form was rejected as it contained only one signature when the lot was held in two names. (one of the owners was interstate).

    Is this the rule? Can’t find a reference in the NSW Act

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  • #54738
    TrulEConcerned
    Flatchatter

    Jimmy, I agree it is a mess and that NSWFT should clean it up.

    That said, some time ago I heard that at a NSW strata plan, a proxy form was rejected by the agent when not all co-owners signed the form. The reason stated was that the form asks to print the names of lot owner(s) (the two lot co-owners names were printed) and required the signatures of the lot owner(s), but only one co-owner signed.

    The following from Victoria backs this up:

    I found one case questioning if all co-owners of a lot need to sign a proxy to consider it valid. That case sheds some light on the topic, see Babray & Ors v Whittles Australia Pty Ltd (Owners Corporations) [2013] VCAT 327. 
    In that case, the validity of a proxy form was questioned as it was signed only by one of the two co-owners.  But Madam Member did not decide its validity as the proxy form was accepted at the strata committee meeting.

    That said, Madam Member did state a preference for all co-owners to sign the proxy form so that it is clear that their joint vote may be exercised by the appointed proxy without question.

    Madam Member revealing her “preference” is good enough for me. All co-owners should sign if they want to avoid all doubt.

    #54732
    Jimmy-T
    Keymaster

    Neither of these clauses spell out that both owners must sign a proxy form for it to be valid.

    In fact, Section 24 confusingly says in subclause 4 ,”The voting rights of co-owners of a lot may not be exercised by them individually but may be exercised: (a)  by a proxy (who may be one of them), or (b)  as provided by subclause (5).

    Then 24.5 says “If … the rights of co-owners of a lot are not exercised by a proxy as referred to in subclause (4), one of them may act as such a proxy: (a)  if the other co-owners are absent or those who are present give their consent, or (b)  if paragraph (a) does not apply—if he or she is the owner first named on the strata roll as one of the co-owners.

    So, in short, one of the co-owners of a lot can’t vote unless they have been given a proxy vote (presumably by the other owner) unless the other owner isn’t there.  But why would they need a proxy if the other owner WAS there?

    Again, neither of these clauses refer directly to who must sign a proxy form.  Also, I have discovered an opinion from a very experienced strata lawyer that individual co-owners can each have an allocation of proxy votes to carry, up to the maximum, because the law limiting the number of proxies any owner can hold, spelled out in Sched.1, 26.7 refers to “person” not “owner” or “lot”: ie “the total number of proxies that may be held by a person …”,

    I’d interested to hear how that played out in the Tribunal.

    But getting back to the point, I couldn’t find any direct reference to how many owners should sign proxy forms, but I have found mentions of this in strata management websites that say both signatures of co-owners should be on the forms.

    This whole thing is a mess that Fair Trading would do well to clear up in the current strata law review.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by .
    #54719
    TrulEConcerned
    Flatchatter

    This should help you:
    Search for
    STRATA SCHEMES MANAGEMENT ACT 2015 – SCHEDULE 1

    Then scroll for

    SCHEDULE 1 – Meeting procedures of Owners’ Corporation

    go to
    Part 4 – Voting rights and voting procedures
    Division 1 – General rights to vote
    23 Persons entitled to vote at general meetings

    Division 2 – Appointment of proxies
    26 Appointment of proxies

    Good luck.

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