Question: Can an EGM be held online? And if yes, could you please give information on how to organise it?
Answer: If most residents are actively using an online portal and have provided their current contact details then online meetings are worth exploring.
If there are no by-laws that prohibit online or electronic meetings then a strata committee may choose to hold a general meeting online. Under the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 (the Act), the strata committee must first agree by resolution to adopt online communication methods such as social media, video and teleconference to hold meetings online.
The prescribed meeting protocols under the Act still apply. For instance, providing written notice to each owner at least seven days before the meeting.
Organising an online or electronic meeting
Once the strata committee has agreed to hold meetings online, they should consider the following practical aspects:
- The costs and benefits of purchasing an online meeting software designed for strata meetings versus using a free generic one. Find out if a paid software offers a free trial for the committee to test in an upcoming committee meeting.
- If you use a free online meeting tool, it will need to be set up and managed by someone (for example the strata manager) who is familiar with the prescribed meeting protocols and has access to up to date contact details for all owners.
- It may be difficult to encourage some owners of your strata to use new software and switch from physical to online meetings – so focus on selling the benefits to everyone.
Are most owners already using an online portal at your strata?
While holding online strata meetings has financial and practical benefits for most owners, there will be people who are not open to change and if they are the majority then it will be difficult to implement online meetings.
In some strata schemes there is an online portal that allows all owners to lodge maintenance and repair requests. In those cases, if most residents are actively using an online portal and have provided their current contact details then online meetings are worth exploring.
This post appears in Strata News #270.
Question: Can we hold a meeting electronically and just have everybody use electronic voting on the issue of a special levy via email to our strata manager rather than having another face to face meeting?
I live in a smallish strata complex with 10 units. Most of the owners are fairly hands-on and want to have lots of meetings to discuss things. We have discussed doing some additional landscaping that will require a special levy and understand a special levy needs to be struck at a meeting.
We don’t have any other need for a meeting right now. Can we hold this meeting electronically and use electronic voting for the issue via email to our strata manager rather than having a face to face meeting?
Can we use electronic voting or do we need to have some physical representation of the meeting? We have approved electronic voting at a previous meeting so that’s not an issue. We are just not sure how to proceed.
Answer: Whether or not you need a meeting depends on whether you’ve adopted “pre-meeting” electronic voting or electronic voting at the meeting.
Whether or not you need a meeting depends on whether you’ve adopted “pre-meeting” electronic voting or electronic voting at the meeting. Your strata manager will be able to determine which, and, in either case simply needs to issue an agenda/notice of meeting in relation to the special levy proposed to be struck.
This post appears in Strata News #214.
These articles are not intended to be personal advice and you should not rely on it as a substitute for any form of advice.
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