Body Corporate Reforms: What You Need to Know

The Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997 (BCCM Act) in Queensland, Australia, establishes a legislative framework for the creation and administration of community titles schemes. This encompasses residential complexes such as apartments and townhouses, as well as commercial complexes with shared property and facilities. The primary objective of the BCCM Act is to ensure the efficient and harmonious management of these communities by defining the rights and responsibilities of all parties involved.

On the 14th of November 2023, the Body Corporate and Community Management and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2023 was passed, bringing with it a series of significant new changes. 

These amendments were implemented to effectively streamline processes, enhance living conditions, and provide clearer regulations for community living in Australia. Let’s delve into the key changes and what they mean for property owners and occupiers.

Immediate Action on Parking Violations

One of the most notable changes is the ability for body corporates to tow vehicles that contravene parking by-laws without the previously required contravention notice and Commissioner’s Office route. This adjustment aims to address parking violations more quickly and efficiently.

Key Considerations:

  • Lawful Drafting of By-Laws: Ensure by-laws are correctly drafted to regulate parking.
  • Vehicle Identification: Establish a by-law compelling owners and occupiers to notify the body corporate of their vehicle details.
  • Compliance with Towing Legislation: Obtain implied consent through adequate signage and other necessary measures.

Smoking Bans on Common Property

The legislation now permits body corporates to prohibit smoking on common property, extending beyond just substantially enclosed areas to include outdoor areas of a lot.

Key Considerations:

Appropriate By-Law Registration: Register a non-smoking by-law that covers the necessary areas.

Evidence for Enforcement: Gather sufficient evidence before taking enforcement action.

Exclusive Use Areas: Properly consider and authorise any smoking bans within exclusive use areas.

Enhanced Pet Approval Mechanisms

The amendments introduce stronger mechanisms for pet approvals, aligning with recent changes in tenancy legislation that give tenants greater rights to obtain landlord approval. 

This move simplifies the process for occupiers seeking permission to keep pets and limits the committee’s grounds for refusal.

Termination and Sale of Community Title Schemes

A new mechanism is now in place to terminate and sell a community title scheme if it is deemed no longer economically viable. This provision aims to offer a pragmatic solution for schemes that can no longer sustain themselves.

Additional Changes

Several other adjustments have been made to improve the functioning of body corporates:

Removal of Body Corporate Seal References: Simplifies documentation processes.

By-Law Enforcement by Principal Bodies Corporate: Strengthens the enforcement of by-laws against subsidiary owners and occupiers.

Enhanced Access to Body Corporate Records: Provides better rights to access records within a layered arrangement.

Updated Codes of Conduct: Revamps the codes for body corporate managers and caretaking service contractors.

Insurance Authorisations by Adjudicators: Allows adjudicators to approve lesser insurances, reducing the need for Commissioner approval.

Flexible Financial Year Changes: Enables bodies corporate to change their financial year by ordinary resolution once every five years without requiring an adjudicator’s order.

Sunset Clauses in Off-the-Plan Sales Contracts: Revises rules around sunset clauses to protect buyers in off-the-plan sales.


The passage of the Body Corporate and Community Management and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2023 marks a significant step towards more effective and responsive management of community living environments. 

These changes not only aim to address existing issues more efficiently but also pave the way for smoother operations within body corporates. Property owners, occupiers, and body corporate managers should familiarise themselves with these amendments to ensure compliance and take advantage of the streamlined processes now in place.

Written By

Kayleigh Swift, Director of NB Property Law

[email protected]

(07) 3876 5111

Kayleigh Swift is the Director of NB Property Law, where she also showcases her expertise in Commercial and Residential property matters. Prior to joining NoBorders Law Group, Kayleigh was part of a commercial property team in a mid-sized firm and held a position in a local council’s property department.

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