Fairer rights for retirement village residents

Released 29/11/2018

Residents will have access to a fairer voting system and legally enforceable dispute process under new laws improving the management of ACT retirement villages.

Minister for Justice Shane Rattenbury said the Retirement Villages Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 introduced today, would support a fairer, clearer and more equitable framework for retirement village operators and residents.

“These reforms demonstrate the ACT Government has heard and acted on residents’ calls for greater clarity and guidance in our laws,” Mr Rattenbury said.

“Residents and operators will have access to a legally enforceable dispute conciliation process through the Human Rights Commission, which means that residents can seek court orders if the terms of an agreement are breached.

“The changes will also provide guidance around the types of actions that qualify as capital maintenance, and are funded by residents, and those that amount to capital replacement, which are funded by the village operator.

“A new unit-by-unit voting model – where one vote per unit is permitted, rather than per individual – will support an equitable voting structure in retirement villages.

“Recognising this system may not be suitable to all retirement villages, residents will have the option to restore voting rights to each individual resident under special circumstances.

“These amendments strike an important balance between the needs of residents and operators.”

Attorney-General and Minister for Seniors Gordon Ramsay said the proposed amendments to the Civil Law (Sale of Residential Property) Act 2003 and Unit Titles (Management) Act 2011 will cut red tape and reduce the cost burden for sellers of units in unit-titled retirement villages.

“Owners of unit-titled apartments will be able to provide prospective buyers with due-diligence documents no later than 14 days before the contract of sale is made,” Mr Ramsay said.

“This will reduce the cost borne by sellers where a property remains on the market for an extended period of time.

“Sellers who fail to provide the required due diligence documents for inspection by prospective buyers as required, face significant financial penalties.”

- Statement ends -

Section: Shane Rattenbury, MLA | Media Releases

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