News & Resources

NSW Legislation Update:

Residential Apartment Buildings
(Compliance & Enforcement Powers) Act 2020

The Residential Apartment Buildings (Compliance and Enforcement Powers) Act 2020 is set to commence on the 1st of September 2020 and applies to all residential apartment buildings (Class 2 buildings).

The purpose of the Act is to enable the Secretary to carry out investigative, monitoring and enforcement works to ensure compliance with the relevant legislative requirements including the BCA, relevant Australian Standards and the approved plans.

This new Act requires that the Secretary be notified of the proposed application for Occupation Certificate not less than 6 months from the expected application (however cannot be more than 12 months in advance).

Notification is to be made via an Expected Completion Notice, and if the date of application for Occupation Certificate is to be amended, this is to be notified through an Expected Completion Amendment Notice. The details regarding the content and how these notices are to be lodged have not yet been confirmed, however it is noted that these notices are to be completed by the developer.

Under this legislation, the Secretary can, through the issuance of a prohibition order, prevent the Occupation Certificate from being issued in the following scenarios:

  1. The required completion notice was not given to, or was given less than 6 months before the date of application for Occupation Certificate.
  2. The required completion amendment notice of a new expected date was not given to, or was given less than 6 months before the date of application for Occupation Certificate,
  3. The Secretary is satisfied that a serious defect in the building exists,
  4. Any building bond required under section 207 of the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015 in relation to the building has not been given to the Secretary.

Transitional Provisions

For development where the application for Occupation Certificate is scheduled to be lodged before the 1st of March 2021 (within 6 months of the commencement of the Act), the Secretary is to be notified within 2 weeks of the commencement of this legislation (i.e. by the 14th of September 2021) of the proposed application. This will apply to all projects containing class 2 portions that are currently under construction with an Occupation Certificate application scheduled to be lodged within this timeframe.