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Property Development

New Requirements for Land Sales and Developers

New Requirements for Land Sales and Developers

The new financial year will bring in a number of changes to the property industry.  Developers need to plan for these changes to ensure compliance and avoid any delays or other adverse implications once the amendments take effect.

Commissioner is under no duty to issue amended land tax assessments

Commissioner is under no duty to issue amended land tax assessments

The High Court of Australia has recently allowed an appeal against a decision of the Victorian Court of Appeal and found that the Commissioner of State Revenue (Commissioner) was not under a duty to issue amended assessments and refund an excess amount of land tax that was erroneously been paid by a taxpayer.

Profit from the development and sale of a commercial property by a private family group found to be on capital account

Profit from the development and sale of a commercial property by a private family group found to be on capital account

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) recently held in FLZY and Commissioner of Taxation that profit arising from the sale of a building by a family trust that was part of a privately held family group (Group) gave rise to a discount capital gain despite the wider property building, development and investment activities undertaken by the Group. The decision demonstrates the importance of considering a taxpayer’s purpose and intention when acquiring and developing real estate within the broader factual context of the activities undertaken by a taxpayer and any related entities.

Common Owners Corporation rule declared invalid

Common Owners Corporation rule declared invalid

A recent VCAT decision has clarified the powers of Owners Corporations to regulate short term leasing. It is common for Owners Corporation Rules to restrict certain activities that can be done in a multi-unit complex.

VCAT opinion restricts recovery by landlords of costs of essential safety measures and repairs and maintenance

VCAT opinion restricts recovery by landlords of costs of essential safety measures and repairs and maintenance

On 1 May 2015, the President of the Victorian Civil Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) issued an advisory opinion in response to the Victorian Small Business Commissioner’s request as to whether a landlord of commercial premises can pass on the costs of Essential Safety Measures (ESM) and certain repair and maintenance obligations for retail premises to tenants.  The term ESM covers measures prescribed by building law for safety and fire protection.

Subdivision of land in two zones

Subdivision of land in two zones

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has clarified the interpretation of the provisions in all planning schemes in Victoria concerning the subdivision of land parcels which are in two planning zones.

Owners Corporation rule too 'vague' according to Tribunal

Owners Corporation rule too 'vague' according to Tribunal

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has found that Owners Corporation special rules purporting to prohibit ‘illegal’ behavior, a relatively common formulation of rule, are unlawful under the legislative regime created by the Owners Corporations Act 2006.

Electronic conveyancing is coming

Electronic conveyancing is coming

The coming of electronic conveyancing has been touted for over 10 years.  Initially planned to provide an online platform for conveyancing commencing with enquiry with an estate agent to final settlement, the reality is a more modest electronic settlement facility.  It will be the equivalent of the Australian Stock Exchange for property settlements.