A body corporate is a legal entity comprising the collective owners of a community title development. The body corporate is established upon registration of a community title scheme, and a unit owner automatically becomes a member of the body corporate after purchasing an individual lot.
The body corporate’s role is to manage the common property and assets of the community title development for the owners’ mutual benefit. Its functions include:
- financial management and record keeping;
- arranging public risk and building insurance;
- entering service and facilities management contracts;
- controlling the common property and arranging repairs and maintenance;
- appointing managing agents and electing building management committees;
- making, implementing and enforcing by-laws for the development.
Each year members are elected to form a committee which oversees the daily administration of the body corporate and makes certain decisions on behalf of the scheme and its members. Some decisions are made at committee level while others must be passed at a general meeting.
Resolutions passed by a body corporate affect other unit owners. Committee members of a body corporate have significant responsibilities and must understand their obligations and scope of powers under their appointment.
Community title schemes and the establishment, activities and conduct of the body corporate and its members are governed by the Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997 (Qld) and associated Regulations. It is important for committee members to have a working knowledge of the Act and Regulations, to make informed and lawful decisions concerning the scheme and to understand the restrictions upon decision-making.
There are a range of issues that may arise when a body corporate exercises its functions under the legislation, and committee members should seek legal advice and direction if facing uncertainty or for complex matters.
Our body corporate advisory team has comprehensive legal knowledge of the laws, regulations and codes affecting community title schemes and has assisted many bodies corporate, managers and developers across a range of legal issues and matters such as:
- advising committee members on their powers under the relevant laws;
- preparing, reviewing and interpreting by-laws;
- negotiating, reviewing and advising on management rights agreements;
- advising and assisting with contractual or building disputes;
- preparing community management statements;
- assisting with applications for conciliation and adjudication with the Office of the Commissioner for Body Corporate and Community Management;
- representing the body corporate at the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal or Court.