What is a Body Corporate?
A body corporate is a legal entity created when land is subdivided and registered to establish a community titles scheme. The scheme can be a duplex, a residential unit block, a high rise accommodation complex, a shopping complex. Every owner of a lot in a community titles scheme is automatically a member of the body corporate. Owners do not have a choice as to whether or not they will be a member of the body corporate. (Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997)
It is a requirement that each body corporate be registered as a Community Titles Scheme.
As a body corporate there are certain functions that must be carried out.
Some of these include:
· Arrangement for insurance of the building and common areas
· Maintenance to be organized for common property
· Meetings called in accordance with the ACT
· Budgets set for the financial year
· Preparation of audits, tax returns and insurance claims if required
· Upkeep of accounts
Obtaining the services of an experienced Body Corporate Manager and a reliable Company, that is a member of Strata Community Australia, will assist you with these daily functions as well as guide and provide advice to ensure you comply with all the necessary requirements of the Community Management ACT 1997.
The role of the Body Corporate Committee:
A committee is chosen to by the owners to handle the day to day administration of the body corporate. There must be a committee of the body corporate for a community titles scheme. The committee is usually elected at the Annual General Meeting.
The role of the Body Corporate Manager:
The body corporate manager is generally engaged to carry out specific administrative tasks to ensure that the community titles scheme is administered in accordance with the Body Corporate and Community Management Act (Qld) 1997 and other applicable legislation. Their primary interest is to ensure that the scheme is efficiently managed on behalf of all owners.
Often a body corporate manager effectively works as the secretary of the body corporate committee. In consultation with the elected Chairperson, they will set dates for committee meetings, the annual general meeting, extraordinary meetings and in doing so prepare meeting papers such as agendas, minutes and financial reports.
The body corporate manager will follow specific instructions issued by the body corporate committee. In some instances, the body corporate committee may delegate some of its authority to the manager so that routine matters such as electricity bills can be paid by their due date.
It is important to note that a body corporate manager can only act when provided with specific instructions from the body corporate committee. It would be inappropriate for the body corporate manager to spend money on items such as building maintenance without appropriate approval.