Enforcing owners corporation rules

Skip listen and sharing tools

Informing residents and owners of the owners corporation rules

People who fail to obey rules sometimes simply do not know the rules. Your owners corporation (formerly body corporate) should ensure that all new residents, whether owners or occupiers, get a copy of the rules.

If appropriate, the owners corporation could send a letter highlighting a particular rule to all residents, asking for compliance.

Discuss your concerns about breaches of the rules with the person involved, the manager or the committee. The owners corporation, its committee or manager may act on your behalf.

Rules an owners corporation cannot enforce

An owners corporation cannot enforce ambiguous or unreasonable rules, or rules that unfairly discriminate against a lot owner or occupier. For example, a rule cannot prevent children from living in a lot (unless it is a retirement village) or restrict the use of a guide dog. Avoid making rules that are inconsistent with the Owners Corporation Act 2006, Subdivision Act 1988 or their regulations conflict with or limit any other Act, Regulation, or legal requirement; for example, privacy laws.

Recording breaches of owners corporation rules

Record details of the breach of rules. This should include who, what, how, time and date.

If appropriate, take a photograph; for example, you could photograph the parking or damage.

Making a formal complaint to the owners corporation

You can make a formal written complaint to the owners corporation in an approved form. The owners corporation may decide to take no action, but must provide you with written reasons for this decision.

The owners corporation must have an internal dispute resolution process to handle complaints about breaches of the rules and other disputes.

For more information about this process, see our Complaint handling in your owners corporation page.

Power to commence legal proceedings 

An owners corporation’s ability to initiate legal actions requires different voting thresholds for actions in different courts. For example, if a matter is within the civil jurisdictional limit of the Magistrates’ Court, an owners corporation only requires an ordinary resolution to commence legal proceedings.