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It is with great pleasure that Hartley’s confirm legislation assented on 22 November 2023 contains a new section 163A to be inserted into the Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997 which will read as follows:

            163A Towing motor vehicles from common property.

(1)        Nothing in this Act prevents a body corporate for a community titles scheme from towing a motor vehicle from the common property for the scheme under another Act or otherwise according to law.

(2)        If a motor vehicle owned or operated by the owner or occupier of a lot included in the scheme and parked in contravention of a by-law for the scheme is towed by the body corporate, the body corporate is not required to comply with a requirement under chapter 3, part 5, division 4.

(3)        In this section— motor vehicles see the Transport Operations (Road Use Management) Act 1995, schedule 4.

Importantly – the above is not yet law in Queensland as it has not been proclaimed and with a recent reshuffling of ministers and portfolios it is not known exactly when the new section 163A is expected to come into effect.

That said – it is open to Committees to commence the formal by-law contravention process now to reduce delay once the law is proclaimed.

What are the Committee’s options once the new law is implemented?

The above wording provides for the vehicle to be parked “in contravention of a by-law”.

This means that prior to the Committee taking any steps whatsoever the Committee should undertake the by-law contravention process, publish minutes, wait for a notice of opposition (if required) and undertake the process to appoint a tow truck operator.

In addition, we would suggest Committees make enquires to check whether the vehicle is of police interest and/or whether it is registered.

We anticipate many bodies corporate will, as part of this legislative change, look to incorporate a towing by-law as part of the motions to be considered by owners at their next general meeting.

Hartley’s has developed a process to assist the Committees and we will make it available to Committee members over the coming weeks.