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  • This topic has 2 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 3 weeks ago by .
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  • #58206

    I have a question about who is responsible for damage as a result of a common property failure. A common property storm water pipe in the corridor of my high rise apartment building developed a leak which flooded the corridor and came under my front door and flooded my apartment causing damage to my carpet through into my lounge room. My carpet has been destroyed. The strata manager believes that the OC has no responsibility for any damages caused as the carpet is on my lot and as such that I am not entitled to any compensation or to make any claim on the OC. This doesn’t seem right to me, some advice would be great.

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  • #58208

    There is much confusion over this and you would think that a failure of common property causing damage elsewhere would see the costs sheeted back to the owners corp. But then it gets complicated by the idea that the OC needs to have been negligent – i.e. they failed to maintain common property and that failure had forseeable consequences.

    There’s also a lot of discussion about this on the internet in various legal and strata management sites

    Section 106 of the Strata Schemes Management Act says an owners corporation must properly maintain common property and keep  it in a state of good and serviceable repair.

    It also says lot owners may recover expenses and damages from the Owners Corporation because they’ve failed to repair and maintain common property.

    However, as has frequently been pointed out on this website, sometimes this simplest solution is to by-pass the strata committee and strata manager and make a claim directly to the strata insurer (they will be named on your latest AGM minutes).

    The insurer, who would have to pay up if the OC lost at NCAT or in court, will quickly assess their liability and might decide to pay up rather than have to pay the costs of legal defence then have to pay up anyway.

    It’s worth a phone call but don’t expect your strata manager to help if they are already throwing up obstacles.


    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by .

    I concur with JT.

    We had a similar problem in a building that I am  chair.

    A lot owner had damaged flooring from pipe leak. She got the details of the insurer and made a claim directly. The OC and the strata manager were unsure who was responsible, but we did not discourage the lot owner making a claim.

    The insurance company paid her  claim. The OC was not out any money as we had already made a claim and paid the excess for damage to OC property.

    In the end it was a satisfactory outcome, particularly that the lot owner liased with the insurance  of  company in regards to the repair and scheduling to suit her.

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks ago by .
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