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Applying to VCAT

The owners corporation list at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) hears:

  • disputes that have not been resolved through dispute resolution and after a final notice has been issued by the owner corporation
  • disputes where the complaint is about the operation of an owners corporation.

Who may apply to VCAT?

The following people (or entities) may lodge an application to VCAT:

  • a manager or former manager
  • lot owner or former lot owner
  • the owners corporation
  • an occupier (tenant) or former occupier
  • a mortgagee
  • an insurer where the policy was taken out by the owners corporation, or
  • the Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV).

See s. 153, 162, 163—Owners Corporations Act 2006 (Vic).

Generally legal representation is not allowed for small claims under $15,000.

Orders that VCAT may make

The kinds of orders VCAT can make are extremely broad. They include:

  • ordering a party to do or not to do something
  • ordering a party to comply with the law
  • ordering a party to begin (or to defend) proceedings in court on behalf of the OC
  • ordering the payment of money (either if the sum is owed or to pay for damages)
  • ordering that a contract term is varied or added
  • making a declaratory order about the meaning of the OC rules
  • ordering that an OC committee member is made or revoked
  • ordering repairs to a building
  • ordering payment of a penalty for breaching the rules of up to $250, and
  • ordering that insurance is paid.

See s. 165, 166, 168—Owners Corporations Act 2006 (Vic).

Factors VCAT must consider

When VCAT is deciding on a matter, they must consider:

  • the conduct of the parties
  • the impact of the order on all of the other lot owners and residents, and
  • whether the order would be unjust, oppressive or discriminatory against any of the lot owners or residents.

More information

Legislation

Owners Corporation Act 2006 (Vic)

  • ss. 160, 161—complaints to Consumer Affairs Victoria
  • Part 11—applying to VCAT
  • s. 162—disputes that VCAT may hear
  • s. 163—who may apply to VCAT
  • s. 165—orders that VCAT may make
  • s. 166—penalties for breach of the rules
  • s. 167—what VCAT must conider when making a desiion
  • s. 168—monetary orders

See Owners Corporations Act 2006 (Vic).

Reference

Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT)

The VCAT site has forms, guides and information about what to expect at the tribunal.

See VCAT—Owners corporations.

The Law Handbook

Fitzroy Legal Service’s Law Handbook has information about the dispute resolution process in its chapter about owners corporations.

See Owners corporations.

Updated