Friday, October 2, 2020

Model By-Laws for Pets in Strata

Model By-laws for pets in strata - Strataville

Model By-laws for pets in strata

The model by-laws provide owners corporations with options to control whether pets are allowed, and on what terms. For example, the owners corporation may choose to have a pet by-law which:

  • bans pets on the property altogether (other than assistance animals)
  • allows owners to keep a pet and simply provide 14 days notice from when the pet has started living on the lot owner’s property, or
  • allows a pet with the written permission of the owners corporation. This particular model by-law states that the owners corporation cannot unreasonably refuse the request. If they do refuse, they must give the owner written reasons outlining why the pet is not being permitted.

Despite the much hyped and anticipated NSW Strata Reforms in 2015, pets are still not automatically permitted in strata schemes. The recommended or model by-laws do not apply to a strata scheme unless they are adopted by the owners corporation for the strata scheme or lodged with the strata plan.

Owners corporations can determine the by-laws that suit the preferred lifestyle of the strata scheme. Although, a by-law must not be harsh, unconscionable or oppressive. By-laws cannot restrict assistance animals.

Keeping of animals in Strata

Note. Select option A or B. If no option is selected, option A will apply.

Option A

(1) An owner or occupier of a lot may keep an animal on the lot, if the owner or occupier gives the owners corporation written notice that it is being kept on the lot.
(2) The notice must be given not later than 14 days after the animal commences to be kept on the lot.
(3) If an owner or occupier of a lot keeps an animal on the lot, the owner or occupier must—

a) keep the animal within the lot, and
b) supervise the animal when it is on the common property, and
c) take any action that is necessary to clean all areas of the lot or the common property that are soiled by the animal.

Option B

(1) An owner or occupier of a lot may keep an animal on the lot or the common property with the written approval of the owners corporation.
(2) The owners corporation must not unreasonably withhold its approval of the keeping of an animal on a lot or the common property and must give an owner or occupier written reasons for any refusal to grant approval.
(3) If an owner or occupier of a lot keeps an animal on the lot, the owner or occupier must—

a) keep the animal within the lot, and
b) supervise the animal when it is on the common property, and
c) take any action that is necessary to clean all areas of the lot or the common property that are soiled by the animal.

(4) An owner or occupier of a lot who keeps an assistance animal on the lot must, if required to do so by the owners corporation, provide evidence to the owners corporation demonstrating that the animal is an assistance animal as referred to in section 9 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 of the Commonwealth.

In all cases if pets are allowed, the lot owner must still supervise their pet, clean any common property that is soiled, and ensure their pet is not noisy or negatively impacting on other residents.

Reference: Strata Schemes Management Regulation 2016 – Schedule 3

© State of New South Wales (NSW Fair Trading). For current information go to fairtrading.nsw.gov.au

Strataville Editorial
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