Adjudicators order Pets

30 Apr Adjudicators Order – Breaching Pet Approval Conditions 

Adjudicators Order – Breaching Pet Approval Conditions

I am sure that as an Owner or Occupant within a Strata Scheme, you would be aware that there is generally a by-law included in your Community Management Statement around pets.

This by-law may be worded:

“(1) The occupier of a lot must not, without the body corporate’s written approval –

  1. Bring or keep an animal on the lot or the common property; or
  2. Permit an invitee to bring or keep an animal on the lot or the common property.

(2) The occupier must obtain the body corporates written approval before bringing, or permitting an invitee to bring, an animal onto the lot or the common property”

The wording on this by-law may vary, but generally, the meaning will be the same – unless you have the permission in writing of the Body Corporate – you are not permitted to keep a pet within your lot.

Once you have sought approval for a pet and the Body Corporate have provided you with permission in writing, the approval granted will be conditional upon certain rules being followed. These could include conditions such as:

  • The approval is only for the life of this specific animal and any future pets will require written approval from the Body Corporate.
  • The approval is not transferrable to future occupiers of the units.
  • The pet is not allowed unaccompanied on the common areas. 
  • The pet is not allowed on the common areas unless on a leash.
  • Any damage created by the pet on common property will be the responsibility of the pet owner to repair.
  • Any faecal matter deposited on the common property will be removed by the owner of the pet immediately.
  • The pet will be registered with the local council.
  • Should the pet consistently breach the bylaws and interfere with the peaceful enjoyment of other occupiers use of their lots or common property then the Body Corporate will rescind the approval for the pet to reside at the complex.

Again, these may vary depending on the scheme.

If, as an owner or occupier, you have been granted approval to keep a pet within the lot, it is your responsibility to ensure that you and your pet are adhering to the conditions that have been set. Failure to comply with the conditions could result in the Body Corporate revoking the approval and the pet will then need to be removed from the lot.

In this month’s Adjudicators Order, approval had been granted for the respondent to keep a cat within the lot subject to four conditions which included that the cat not be allowed to roam the estate at any time and must be contained within the lot at all times. Unfortunately, the Body Corporate claimed that this condition was continuously being breached and lodged an application with the Commissioners Office for an order that the respondent keep the cat contained in the lot at all times and not allow it to roam on common property or any other lot unless being transported directly across common property for the purposes of entering or exiting the scheme and must be in a cage or carrier if this is the case.

The Adjudicator noted that the applicant and the respondent attended conciliation prior to this, and an agreement was reached between both parties, however the agreement has not resolved the dispute and the cat continues to roam on common property, other units and causes nuisance to other owners and occupants.

After receiving submissions from other owners and the respondent in reply to the application, the Commissioners Office ruled in favour of the applicant and as such ordered that the respondent must ensure that the cat is kept within the lot at all times and is not permitted onto common property or any other lot except if the cat is being transported directly across common property for the purposes of exiting or entering the scheme and must be kept in a secure cage or carrier

The Adjudicator further ordered that if the respondent did not keep the cat within the lot or it causes nuisance the Body Corporate Committee could pass a resolution revoking approval for the cat and if this occurred, the respondent had to, within 30days, permanently remove the cat from the lot and scheme land.

It is important to ensure that once you have received approval for a pet to be kept within your lot that you abide by the conditions put in place as part of the approval.

A full copy of the order can be read: