A Qld lot owner would like to know if the body corporate is responsible for repairing a leaking pipe. Frank Higginson, Hynes Legal provides the following response.
Table of Contents:
- QUESTION: After the repair of a water main leak below my driveway, my drive has been left in a sorry state. At the AGM, the Body Corporate refused to fix the damage. What are my options?
- QUESTION: We have a leak in the main water pipe which is located in an exclusive use area. The pipe services all units. Are repairs to a leaking pipe that services all units a Body Corporate expense?
Question: After the repair of a water main leak below my driveway, my drive has been left in a sorry state. At the AGM, the Body Corporate refused to fix the damage. What are my options?
I am in a block of five units. A mains water pipe spring a leak and they engaged a plumber to fix it. It was located under my driveway.
The finished repair of the driveway has not been done well. The body corporate took it to an AGM and decided not to repair my drive. I believe they are responsible for bringing my drive back to its condition before they dug it up but they are refusing to do so. What are my options please?
Answer: If a motion to repair your driveway went to the annual general meeting and was defeated, challenge that outcome through the Commissioner’s Office.
Based on your query it appears as though a motion went to the annual general meeting to repair your driveway and that motion was defeated.
Assuming that’s the case, your option now is to challenge that outcome through the Commissioner’s Office, potentially on the grounds that the decision was unreasonable. You may need to consider seeking legal advice at this juncture about that potential challenge and also to assess any further options you may have. For example, it’s unclear what motion went to the AGM and what material accompanied it or how it was framed, so legal advice may be able to look further at this point.
One point to keep in mind – was the initial pipe burst a body corporate issue or your issue, as lot owner? I know you say it was a mains water pipe and the assumption is that that is a body corporate issue, but sometimes it is not quite that obvious. Again, this is where legal advice may assist.
This post appears in Strata News #430.
Question: We have a leak in the main water pipe which is located in an exclusive use area. The pipe services all units. Are repairs to a leaking pipe that services all units a Body Corporate expense?
We are a complex of 2 low set buildings each containing 2 duplexes in a Standard Format Plan in Queensland.
At the rear of each duplex is an area designated as exclusive use which works successfully.
The main water line servicing all four units from the footpath lies beneath and along the fence line with the neighbours in the exclusive use area. A leak has developed in the pipe connecting that water main pipe to the external and individual water meter in one of the units before distribution throughout that unit.
It is my understanding that although the main water pipe is located in all 4 exclusive use areas, because the pipe services all dwellings, any repair to a leak connecting that pipe to a dwelling would be at Body Corporate expense. Is this correct?
Answer: If it services all lots, the body corporate must fix the leak.
Utility infrastructure that services more than one lot is the maintenance responsibility of the body corporate.
It does not matter where the pipe is located. If the pipe services all 4 lots, the body corporate must repair the leaking pipe.
This post appears in Strata News #304.
Have a question about fixing a leak or something to add to the article? Leave a comment below.
- QLD: Q&A Who Pays the Body Corporate Insurance Excess from a Leak?
- Water Damage Insurance Claims and The Excess in Strata Properties
Looking for strata information concerning your state? For state-specific strata information, try here.