Bodies Corporate Are Now Required to Consider Pet Applications Much Faster

As of May 1, 2024, new legislation introduced by the Queensland Government will significantly impact how pet applications are handled within nearly all body corporate communities across the state. These changes not only accelerate the decision-making process but also introduce default outcomes if deadlines are not met.

Let’s delve into these modifications and their implications for body corporate committees.

Swift Decision-Making

Under the previous legislation, bodies corporate were required to consider pet applications “as soon as reasonably practical” and within a six-week timeframe from the date of application. This process, coupled with an additional 21-day period for committee members to vote, could prolong the waiting period for pet owners to up to nine weeks.

However, the new law introduces a paradigm shift. Pet applications now receive a special high-priority status, mandating that decisions must be made within 21 days of application submission. While other application timelines remain unchanged, this amendment specifically targets pet approvals, ensuring a faster resolution for applicants.

Default Approval

Another notable change is the introduction of a default ‘approved’ outcome if the committee fails to reach a decision within the 21-day timeframe. Previously, a failure to consider the application within six weeks or to achieve a majority outcome within 21 days resulted in the application being deemed denied. Now, the absence of a decision within the stipulated period automatically grants approval to the pet application.

Impact on Body Corporate Committees

For smaller body corporates with fewer lots, pet applications are relatively infrequent, and decisions are typically made promptly upon receipt. However, larger buildings experience a higher frequency of pet applications, often necessitating batching and holding applications to manage them efficiently. With the new legislation, these committees will most likely need to convene more frequently to meet the accelerated decision-making timeframe.

Even buildings with standing monthly meetings may find it challenging to comply with the 21-day limit on pet applications, prompting a need for procedural adjustments.

Streamlining By-Laws

In response to the growing demand for pet-friendly accommodations, many body corporate communities are revising their pet by-laws to streamline the application process. Rather than requiring individual voting approval for each pet, by-laws are evolving to adopt a more inclusive approach, setting out tailored conditions for pet ownership within the scheme.

 

The recent legislative changes underscore a significant shift in how pet applications are handled within body corporate communities in Queensland. By prioritising efficiency and inclusivity, these amendments aim to foster harmonious living environments while catering to the needs of pet owners. As buildings adapt to meet the evolving demands of their residents, the journey towards pet-friendly living continues to evolve, guided by progressive regulations and community-driven initiatives.

 

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