by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
REIQ Journal : August 2008
LEGAL ISSUES 31 Paul Hopkins, Senior Partner, Carter Newell Lawyers The Court of Appeal carefully considered the Supreme Court’s decision and examined the evidence put forward by the parties at trial. They rejected the plaintiff’s expert evidence, saying that there was “no reason to resort to the [plaintiff’s] expert’s theory”, because the “obvious inference” was that drawn by the trial judge – the plaintiff had simply missed her footing after being startled when the timer light went off. On that basis, the Court of Appeal found that the Supreme Court’s decision was the proper conclusion on the evidence and dismissed the appeal, with costs being awarded against the plaintiff. Property managers must ensure that they properly record all complaints made by tenants in writing... Conclusion The decision reiterates the importance of maintaining a well documented system of recording all complaints made by tenants. Property managers must ensure that they properly record all complaints made by tenants in writing and that they take appropriate steps to address them, either by actioning the request if they have the requisite authority or by seeking the landlord’s instructions to proceed. As this decision demonstrates, the Courts will carefully scrutinise a property management file in instances where there is a conflict of evidence as to whether a particular complaint has been made. The fact that a specific complaint has not been recorded, in circumstances where other complaints have been properly documented and appropriately dealt with by a property manager, will enhance the prospects of the Court accepting the property manager’s version of events in preference to the tenant’s evidence. This decision also serves as a reminder to property managers of the risks that stairs can pose to tenants and third parties. In order to manage the potential risks and to provide the best possible defence to any claims which may arise in relation to accidents on stairs, we recommend that property managers pay particular attention to stairs during their inspections and notify the landlord in writing of any: Concerns regarding the construction or condition of stairs and/or handrails; Observable variation in riser heights; and/ or Lack of visual delineation of the stairs. REIQ Journal August 2008