VCAT Declares Owners Corporation Rule Prohibiting Pets Being Kept in Private Lots Invalid & Unenforceable
By Nicole Wilde
13 September 2016
The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has recently applied the Supreme Court of Victoria’s leading judgment on the legal principles about determining the legal validity of registered Owners Corporation Rules regarding prohibiting pets, namely:
“(a) What was the statutory purpose of the relevant provisions in the legislation?
(b) What is the character of special rule?
(c) Is there a sufficiently direct and substantial connection between the statutory purpose and the likely operation of the rule?”
The case involved an Owners Corporation that had two registered Owners Corporation Rules prohibiting pets on common property and private lots. The rules said:
“Pets are not allowed on common property”
“Pets are not allowed in units”
VCAT found that the rules were invalid because the Owners Corporation did not have the power to make the rules prohibiting pets because they unfairly discriminated against animal owners in the context of that particular subdivision.
Case Reference: Owners Corporation SP24474 v Watkins (Owners Corporations)  VCAT 1312 (11 August 2016)
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