Sectional title property owners often view the body corporate annual general meeting (AGM) as a formality or even an inconvenience, but attendance at these meetings is an important part of sectional title ownership and should be viewed as such.
A body corporate AGM gives all owners and trustees the opportunity to discuss important issues relating to the operation and effective management of a sectional title scheme. The items that are typically discussed at these meetings are:
Financials – The trustees will explain the audit of the financial statements and will provide a report on the work that was completed during the financial year
Building insurance – building insurance schedules and annual budgets will be discussed
Auditor / accounting officer – an auditor or accounting officer will be appointed at the meeting
Trustees – the trustees for the following year will be appointed through nominations and votes, and their duties and powers specified
Other items – matters arising from the previous AGM will be discussed as well as any new matters that owners wish to bring to the table
Legal requirements of an AGM
An AGM is a requirement as part of good management of a sectional title scheme, and there are a number of legal requirements relating to this, including:
An AGM must be held at least once a year, within 4 months of the end of the financial year.
An appropriate time, date and venue must be set and communicated with reasonable notice to all owners, trustees and managing agents. Tenants are welcome to attend as well, but they may not vote on matters raised during the meeting.
An attendance register must be kept.
A quorum (a percentage of owners based on the number of sectional title units) must be present in order for the meeting to proceed and any decisions to be binding.
If insufficient attendees are present, the meeting must be adjourned until the same time and place the following week.
An owner who is not able to attend the AGM may sign a proxy form giving another owner the right to vote on his or her behalf at the meeting. It is worth noting, though, that no owner may hold more than two proxies from other owners within the scheme.
Attendance at these meetings is therefore crucial in order for the meeting to proceed, for owners to be aware of important operational and management matters, and for decisions taken at the meeting to be binding.
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