6 Tautari Street, Orakei
Auckland

Animals and Body Corporates

Many issues arise with residential accommodation and body corporates. These can be mostly separated into two camps.

I did not seek permission for my pet in the place that I live and now that someone has realised I have a pet they have told me to get rid of it.

 

More likely than not you will be obliged to remove your pet as it was never there lawfully in the first place.

 

I was told that it was ok for my pet and now the rules have changed or someone has bought it to my attention that pets are against the rules.

 

Now you have some rights for your pet. Since you got permission, even if it was only verbally, your pet is lawfully living with you. So long as it is not creating a nusience to anyone else in any real way then it is unjust for you to be expected to remove it. If your pet was to pass away then you would need new approval to bring a new animal to live with you.

 

If you are a tenant then the body corporate does not have a contract with you so they can not enforce any body corporate rule upon you. The correct procedure is for the body corporate to approach your landlord and for him to talk with you. However, if your landlord has given you permission for the animal then they are in a difficult position. Many body corporate managers try to ride rough shot over tenants when they have no legal right to do so. Should a landlord get a wee bit nasty and issue you with a 90 termination notice under the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 then you can apply to the Tenancy Tribunal under section 54 of this act stating that the landlord is acting in a retaliatory way and if the Tribunal agrees with you then they can cancel the termination notice.

 

Ok. So what should I do to resolve this consensually?

 

Good communication is generally the answer. Set up a meeting with all the people involved. Try and understand it from their point of view and attempt to get them to do it the same. Ask a lot of "why" questions and don't accept answers to the effect, "Because its the rules." If you cant get to a consensual agreement on your own then make contact with us.

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