74 Comments Criminal law, traffic matters, DUI, assault, theft, fraud
Interesting, I once owned a strata titled apartment and the parking space was also on the title. Perhaps if you have your solicitor write a letter to the Body Corporate with a copy to the Parking people they have engaged, pointing out that you own the parking space, and you'll do what you like with it, and suggesting that they stick their letters of demand where the sun don't shine.
Also you might like to try to rally some support with other owners and get the body corporate managers sacked at the next AGM, we did and it saved us lots of money, with individual members looking after specific aspects of the maintenance of the place.
Thanks for your note â€“ I would LOVE to have the Owners Corporation sacked at the next AGM (Other than they are there for a 5 year contract), but the company that operates the Owners Corporation (which is also the developers) hold a large number of votes â€“ hardly a conflict of interest. What they did was combine the car park title (The car park in question), the storage space and apartment title together. This in effect gave unit a maximum of 1 vote. They did not sell all their car spaces and use them to veto anything they disagree with at the AGMs.
If you read the attached documents â€“ this new regime is going to start on April the 1st. My barrister told me not to sign for a pass as it would compromise my position with regard to the demand of damages. Aka I have acknowledged they have the right to invoice me if I fail to display a sticker with my address on the windscreen of my car aka Car park pass.
Back to what I was saying â€“ they are threatening to â€śdemand for payment of liquidated damages for breach of contractâ€ť if I fail to display a pass to park on my own property. I will write to the Owners corporation on Tuesday and wait the 2 to 3 weeks for them to get back to me. I will be requesting they explain where they have the right to demand liquidated damages for me to park on my own property, that I feel it is a breach of my privacy to force me to display my personal address on the windscreen of my vehicles and that my barrister has strongly advised me not to sign the attached from as it may be construed as some contract Care Park can claim payment for liquidated damages for breach of contract.
Reading more about Care Park and other similar organizations around the world â€“ they appear to be collecting money though fraudulent means. (Read bluff payment of $88 that they are not entitled to).
I will let someone else in the apartment block rally the troops. I will just feed them the information to keep it all going.
Here are some more information on Care Park â€“ it appears they are known to both Consumer Affairs Victoria and Consumer Action Law Center â€“ mainly from the complaints. Care Park are now meeting with Consumer Affairs Victoria on a 3 monthly bases to deal with the LARGE volume of complaints.
Note these are about people parking on commercial car parks â€“ not personal owned residential car park as in my case. (Read parking on my car on my property).
CONSUMER ACTION CALLS ON CAR PARKS TO BE FAIR
CAV PUTS CAR PARK COMPANY ON NOTICE
CAV WITHDRAWS PUBLIC WARNING AFTER CARE PARK AMENDS PAYMENT PROCEDURES
miss_croft81 2009-03-08 22:00:10
Thanks for posting this thread miss_croft81. I think I'm living in the same building too, QV1 apartments, am I right? I am not clear how Care Park works. I own the apartment that I'm staying now and I intend to rent it out in hope to help me finance my mortgage repayments.
I think from what I read, starting from 1st April, I have to pay Care Park a fee, or some sort of 'license', in order for me to be able to rent out the car park. Can I please get some clarifications?
Hey Miss Croft and others,
Looks like we're neighbors and fellow owners in the same Owners Corporation. I too have received the letter stuck under my door and like you am very worried by these latest developments.
I'm also annoyed at the extra bureaucracy and inconvenience this places on legimitate lot owners trying to gain access to their own property, but think that we should also be concerned about the broader implications of this this agreement for the Owners Corporation.
As owners, I think that we all should be asking some serious questions of the OC Manager and/or Committee, like:
- What are the specifics of the Agreement or Contract with Care Park, including term, ongoing cost of patrol services to the OC, etc?
- What was the OC's legal advice in the lead up to entering into this agreement with Care Park?
- If all lot owners are given a single 'free' pass, but additional passes are charged at $20, what are the additional terms of this arrangement? Does the OC have an exit clause or have they effectively signed all management rights over to Care Park (without actually owning the spaces they are trying to enforce)? More importantly, why should we owners have to pay to legitimately park a car other than our own in our own space?
Forgetting the recent bad press that Care Park have experienced for dubious attempts at 'law' enforcement, I have a bad feeling that this whole arrangement is on very shaky legal ground.
For starters, I think the scope of the "services rendered" by Care Park (point #6 in the Terms and Conditions of Entry) seems very questionable given private strata subdivision arrangements of this development. I can understand Care Park having some vague civil claim for an empty block of land they administer as a CARe PARK for unsuspecting chumps, but in this instance the parking spaces in question actually form part of the owners' lots. I purchased my car space and certainly haven't signed any management agreement with Care Park P/L, and never intend to do so.
If Care Park are the new car park managers as appointed by the Owners Corporation, then surely they should only be able to issue liquidated damages notices for parking on Common Property? As far as I know this only applies to the few parking spaces owned by the OC for utility vehicles, and any 'traffic' areas for vehicles moving in and out of the car park.
I am only guessing here, but suspect that that the OC really hasn't sought proper legal advice prior to this decision, and think that as concerned owners we should definitely refuse to sign any Care Park agreement (aka "Pass pickup form").
I will be seeking advice this week on the legality of "Entering and remaining in this car park" constituting a contract, given the space I OWN and regularly use is explicitly part of the title to my apartment. I find it very hard to believe that I can be fined for not displaying a tag on my windscreen when I am on my own property.
What's next, you have to wear a red hat before our friendly security patrols will let you shop at Safeway?
Let's all keep in touch.
drb279 2009-03-09 20:23:25
I agree. It sounds ridiculous for them to charge me for failing to display a pass, even if i parked at my very own car park, in which I have rightly own together with the apartment. I thought the body corporate fee that I pay every quarter are for these stuffs - i.e Car Park management, Lift maintenance etc etc. Now, with Care Park, it basically means I have to pay more money.
Sounds ridiculous. I think we all should gather our opinions and send them up the Owners Corporation's arse. Note that there are a lot of students living here, and judging from what I've seen so far, they look like they can't be bothered about what's happening. I think that's because mainly, they are only renting the apartments and they don't have cars since nearby universities are just a few minutes walk away. Therefore, I think the owners of these apartments would not have a clue of what's going on. It's important too that they should know about what's happening. I bet they wouldn't be too happy either if they hear about the ridiculous sums that Care Park is charging.
By the way, how did you guys get to this forum? I didn't know the easy way, so I just wrote down the URL. Perhaps there's a more convienant way of accessing this forum for others to see. And also, the papers that some lady sticked just now (which I highly suspect, is miss_croft81 because I was in one of the lifts when she posted it!), have now been removed. So I guess we need a better way to reach out to the other owners.
Keep in touch guys. I really hope we won't let this dodgy Care Park make our lives miserable, least financially of course.
I have deleted the original PDF with the open letter, Terms and Conditions Care Park is trying to force onto the residents, the form for requesting a Care park pass sticker and the signs from in and around the apartment. However I have put it up again â€“ this time at the below address.
Notice to all residents
With the advice of my solicitor I have written a template for my fellow residents to use. You are welcome to use the below PDF. Feel free to copy all or part of the PDF in creation of your letter to the Owners Corporation
i'm also a owner of qv apartment. thank you miss croft for posting the information otherwise i would have blindly signed up for the form.
i'm in full support of miss croft and drb and others opinions.
what came to mind after receiving the letter under my door was:
1. how can i be fined to park at my own property??
2. what if my friend decide to visit me and i let him park at my carspace. do i have to apply in advance for a pass for him and pay an extra $20??
3. how much are we paying CARE park for their services (or from the looks of their notorious reputation they probably get enough money from fining ppl). is this going to increase our already very high body corp fees ($4500 p.a) even more in this troubled financial times.
4. Was this appointment of CARE carpark mentioned in the body corp owner's meeting? i need to go and have a closer look at the minutes because if it wasn't brought up in the meetings i think something as major as this should have been discussed among the owners.
Hi rosicknote, drb279 and Chantel81,
I found this forum when I was looking for background information on Care Park. There was a post about private parking operators and the questionable bulling tactics they use for defrauding innocent people of their hard earned cash.
I can confirm I had nothing to do with posting of this forum in the lifts. It was someone else who took the initiative of Googling Care Park.
I am unable to confirm where I live, that will remove my right to for me to post here anonymously. The same right you will loose when displaying your building name and lot number on the front windscreen of your car.
About renting your car park â€“ that is a tricky one as if you rent the car park to someone outside of the building in Melbourne â€“ then you are liable for the council congestion tax. You might want to talk to your accountant about the ramifications of renting your car park.
Brb279, I have attached a template letter for anyone to use. I would suspect a has been lawyer or someone who has scarped through a law degree is on your committee. That individual or group of individuals will be giving advice to the committee. That is what normally happens with these committees.
I think they have tried to sign the management rights to the car park to Care Park, rights they do not have the authority to hand over. Care Park may have said they are happy to rid the committee of people parking illegally and congestion tax issue. Care Park accepted the rights (That the Owners Corporation never had in the first place). Like in your case I would like to see the contract between the Owners Corporation and Care Park.
If you read the Care Park terms and conditions it reads as if the residential car park belongs to the company (in this case the Owners Corporation) and not the individual lot holders. Sounds to me as if this is a case of a builder not wanting to leave the building site.
How can Care Park enforce liquidity for damages on land they DO NOT own or DO NOT have a permit to do so. (Read lot holder not signed their form that may be misconstrued to be a contract).
Your cap comment made me laughâ€¦ You forgot one very important thing â€“ this sticker will most probably have the building name and lot number on it â€“ so your example should be - having to ware a red cap with your home address displayed to all that look at you.
drb279 â€“ If they are like all owners corporations â€“ their lift maintenance is very poor. Test their security and try pressing all buttons on the lift and see what happens. \
How I found this forum â€“ Google is your best friendâ€¦.
About better ways to reach owners â€“ I am thinking about starting a similar forum for inter city living and will have section for each of the large inner city buildings. This will allow for open communication like this and the ability to search for issues others have dealt with and solved. (Water issue is a good example â€“ other buildings in the city has had the same water issues.)
READ the above template â€“ it will help with your response.
Good luck with your response to this - a serious water down of your property rights.
rosicknote â€“ I have created a template (With the aid of my solicitor) to allow residents fight the engagement of Care Park. I will only post it here on this forum. But, if anyone was to say make it available to others in the any buildings with similar issues â€“ so be itâ€¦
If you decided not to fill in the Care Park form, then you should send a letter to the person who sent the initial letter to you. In my case it was the Owners Corporation Manager in the place of the Care Park contract (AKA New Car Park Procedures form). In my case the response should be before the 20th of March.
Oh you can copy and Paste the text from the PDF into a word or open office document, add your information (Who your Owners Corporation Manager is, their address, your name and address).
Again if a few were say left in the foyers or if you wanted to share them with a friend and say put them in a few letter boxes by mistake because you forgot the exact apartment number â€“ then so be it.
Disclaimer: Get a legal opinion on anything you send to any Owners Corporation - A post from a forum does not constitute as legal advice, but the opinion of a person at a point in time.
QVres â€“ you are right â€“ a company cannot claim damages for you parked on your property unless you enter into a contract with that company â€“ a sign when entering into a car park does not constitute to a contact.
You are also right about the Owners Corporation â€“ such a change in the by laws require a majority vote of all lot owners. (Read 75% of all lot owners). As such, the engagement of Care Park (With their new regime) may contravene the Owners Corporation Act.
I aggree with miss crofts 100%
Do GRD get a commision on any of the fine or damages as they call them ?
There is more to this, they did have a problem with cars following in other cars and the boom gate fixed that, then they installed bollards to stop cars parking on OC lots and that fixed that
So why do we need a parking company to to police the car park that basicly takes care of itself? $$$$$$$$$$ maybe?
I often bring work cars home and park in my space and there are many diferent cars in the pool so am i to get a sticker for every one of them and I know there are a few residents here that work for car dealerships and they need to change their cars many times per week
I was talking to a main player in this a few months ago and the person said that the OC are looking at having parking stickers for the cars or they were going to have the swipe cards programed to 1 entry 1 exit which means if you swipe in you need to exit to come in again so that system would stop any unauthorised cars entering the carpark
QV CASH COW 2009-03-10 01:03:27
I am not 100% sure of the business model, but for what I have read, Care Park do not charge for their services, nor do they give any money to the owner (in these cases the mangers of the common property around the car parks).
There is an issue with the in out theoryâ€¦ Case: you have 2 car spaces and 2 cars. You drive one car to say the mechanic and then you decide to take your other car to another location. You will not be able to leave or enter the said car park.
I am sure your Owners Corporation would have a video camera on the entrance of the car park. If they really want to the few illegal entry of cars. Just re-play the tapes, find the time of the car entering, determine the access card. Then cancel the swipe card entry access. The owner of the swipe will complain to the Owners Corporation and can explain why a car that entered on their swipe was illegally parked.
The bottom line is the Owners Corporation is too lazy, inept or incompetent to do the job they are collecting fees for. How bad is illegal parking? With the boom gate you all are talking about â€“ I doubt it is as bad as they make out.
The ONLY thing Care Park solution is going to do is Cost lot holders money and remove many of their rights including their right to more around the community anomalously (Right to privacy) as the said sticker will have the building name and lot number, the right of freedom of entry to the lot holderâ€™s land (The pass amounts to be a permit for entry to their own land).
Lets put it a different way. This is equivalent to Care Park deciding every one in say Richmond requires a permit to park their car in their garage, driveway or another place on their land.
Another thing â€“ for Care Park to enforce the parking the Care Park staff will be crossing lot holders car parks. This potentially amounts to trespass â€“ if they enter a lot holders property without permission. It is equivalent to Care Park entering your house to check there is an energy saver sticker on your big screen TV.
Signing the from gives Care Park the right of entry to your care park and also enters you into a contract with Care Park. (Care Park is a company that has had its run ins with Consumer Affairs Victoria, Consumer Action Law Centre and has a bad write up in the news papers every so often). I have read cases of Care Park claiming liquidity damages on cars parked in office car parks with the â€śCare Park pass stickerâ€ť displayed. The Care Park employee must have had a bit of trouble meeting his/her quota of liquidity for damages (Fines) for the day. (read is paid a commission on the number of bogus tickets written).
QV Cash Cow, how many times a year do you have issues with a car illegally parked in your space?
From the Owners Corporation act 2006 â€“ This is a great read. I have reproduced the sections that relate to private lots (read Your Car Park).
Owners Corporations Act 2006 - Act No. 69/2006
The Owners Corporation or their agents does not have the right to enter or interfere with a lot holders property with the exception to carrying out repairs or accessing an easement. Placing a demand for liquidity of damages (AKA Fine) for claimed breach of a contract you have not entered into is not reason for entry. Entering your lot for this purpose amounts to trespass (Under the Owners Corporations Act 2006) â€“ Not in reason for entry to private lot.
This is a clear indication the Owners Corporation does not have the right of entry and thus is unable to delegate the right (They do not have) to Care Park as someone has specified in the signs, notices and an open letter stuffed under lot occupants doors.
47. Owners corporation must repair and maintain services
(1) An owners corporation must repair and maintain a service in or relating to a lot that is for the benefit of more than one lot and the common property.
(2) An owners corporation may, at the request and expense of a lot owner, repair and maintain a service in or relating to a lot if it is impracticable for the lot owner to repair or maintain that service.
48. Lots not properly maintained
(1) If a lot owner has refused or failed to carry out repairs, maintenance or other works to the lot owner's lot that are required becauseâ€”
(a) the outward appearance or outward state of repair of the lot is adversely affected; or
(b) the use and enjoyment of the lots or common property by other lot owners is adversely affectedâ€” the owners corporation may serve a notice on the lot owner requiring the lot owner to carry out the necessary repairs, maintenance or other works.
(2) If a lot owner has been served with a notice under sub-section (1), the lot owner must carry out the repairs, maintenance or other works required by the notice within 28 days of the service of the notice.
(3) If a lot owner has been served with a notice under sub-section (1) and has not complied with the notice within the required time, the owners corporation may carry out the necessary repairs, maintenance or other works to the lot.
50. When can an owners corporation authorise a person to enter a lot?
An owners corporation may authorise a person to enter a lot or a building on a lot on its behalf to carry out repairs, maintenance or other works in accordance with section 47(1), 47(2) or 48(3).
51. What notice of entry must be given?
(1) The owners corporation must give at least 7 days' notice in writing to the occupier of a lot of its intention to enter the lot unlessâ€”
(a) the occupier agrees to a lesser time; or
(b) there is an emergency.
(2) Despite sub-section
(1), if the lot is occupied under a residential tenancy agreement, the owners corporation must give the same notice to the occupier as that required to be given by a landlord under section 85 of the Residential Tenancies Act 1997.
(3) In this sectionâ€” "emergency" includesâ€”
(a) an interruption to gas, water, electricity, telephone, drainage, sewerage or a similar service; and
(b) a leak or a similar problem requiring prompt attention; and
(c) cracking or a similar structural problem likely to affect the immediate safety of a building or any person.
RE: New Car-Park Procedures Form
Dear <<Owners Crop Manager>>,
I will not sign or fill in the â€śNew Car-Park Procedures Formâ€ť stuffed under my door as part of an open letter to the <<Building Name>> residents on the following grounds:
â€˘ Filling in the Care Park form may be misconstrued as a contract between myself and Care Park â€“ I do not wish to enter into an agreement of any description with Care Park.
â€˘ One or more pieces of information requested as part of the â€śNew Car-Park Procedures Fromâ€ť is not necessary for the functions of Car Park management and as such, are in breach of the first National Privacy Principles (Collection).
â€˘ The Owners Corporation does not have power to impose penalties over the intended use of private property (in this case a residents car park is a purpose piece of private property zoned and designated for parking ownerâ€™s car) as threatened on the signs in and around <<Building Name>> apartments. This is clear a case of Owners Corporation ultra vires (beyond Owner Corporationâ€™s Power).
I also do not appreciate having signs placed in around <<Building Name>> property which are threatening and questionably unlawful demands for money.
If you do not agree with threats of demands for liquidity of damages then you should write to the Owners Corporation - I have included some words for you in the above post. You can also download a PDF with the same text below.
Disclaimer: A forum entry is no legal advice
miss_croft81 2009-03-10 12:22:56
I have lived in this building since November 2005 and I have never had some one park in my lot I have a friend that has been here 2 years and in his case also no one has parked in his spot.
There is an issue with the in out theoryâ€¦ Case: you have 2 car spaces and 2 cars. You drive one car to say the mechanic and then you decide to take your other car to another location. You will not be able to leave or enter the said car park.
I have this system in my work and its 1 card 1 car ,if its swiped in there is no way you get back in ,same if your out.
I know this is not the topic of our disscussion here but the in out system will work
If you have 2 car parks you will have 2 cards programed to use the car park
Keep up your good work miss crofts, the dogs are barking and more residents are taking notice
I spoke to Consumer Affairs Victoria today and they are very interested in talking to anyone who has had dealings with Care Park as they are currently under investigation. Consumer Affairs Victoria are currently investigating their business practices.
Do you really think Care Park will play fair when the only way the raise revenue is by demanding payments â€śInfringement noticesâ€ť?
I also live in QV1 and am absolutely flabbergasted by how we are forced to sign this document for Care Park to issue fines when parking at our own property!
Yes, maybe once in a while (once in 6 months) there are cars parked at my car spaces but wouldn't your rather just contacting the body corporate to handle it than paying an $88 fine for forgetting the pass? Seriously, we pay the body corporate thousands of dollars already and yet they want us residence to fork out more money for something we own?
I just can't get around the fact that we own the car park yet have to pay a fine if we do not display a pass. Like my self i have three spots. Does it mean i can only park car A in carspace A, car B in carspace B vice versa?
So maybe one day i park my Car A in Car Space B, i get fined? this is basically stealing money.
I don't think many residence are aware what a rubbish company Care Park is and our Body Corporate is junk. Since a lot of residence are not from an english background they should at least written he "contract" in other languages such as chinese or italian. Many residence will sign a legal document they don't even understand. This act by the Body Corporate has taken all dispomancy away.
I will be consulting my solicitor tomorrow afternoon and i suggest all you guys follow the lead by misscroft_81. Spending a couple of hundred bucks is worth it in the long term when you get fined $88 bucks for parking in your own car space.
misscroft_81, do you think handing letters in the mail boxes to notify residence of the implications if they sign the documents will help? At least they will understand better what they are getting themselves into?
I have heard today that Barbara Ross will be holding a forum for owners in the car park in the near future together with staff from care park
No date or time yey but in typical GRD style it will be at a time when most of us are at work ,just to keep the unhappy chappies at a minimum
We must all try to attend
At common law a penalty clause in a contract, that is, an amount that does not represent the true quantum of damages, is unenforceable. In addition, if you are in NSW you can also rely on section 9 of the Contracts Review Act 1980 (NSW) and if in Victoria you can also rely on section 32X-Y of the Fair Trading Act 1999 (Vic) to render the contract term unjust/unfair.
What do you do if you get a ticket in a privately controlled car park not under local government jurisdiction?
1. Ignore the ticket. For if you write to them they will know your address, and therefore they will not have to pay to get your address from the motor registry.
2. If you get a letter from their solicitor, ignore it.
3. If you get a statement of claim or summons, file a defence within the required period. You only need to state one thing on the notice of defence, that is, "The pleadings reveal no cause of action"
4. Attend court and state that the amount claimed is an unenforceable contractual penalty. If in NSW, you can also state that the penalty clause is unjust within the meaning of section 9 of the CRA or if in Victoria it is an unfair term within the meaning of section 32 of the FTA.
In all likelihood, the matter won't even get as far as court.
now they added signs and TOS at the gates... basically as soon as we enter the car park we "agree" to the contract. This is bull sh*t. Force us to accept it. Also the meeting at 6 is not even a good time. Most people just finish work then and with the traffic...I guess they don't won't many people to turn up.
It's very simple:
1. Barbara Ross is chairperson of the Body Corporate.
2. Ross works for GRD (the property management arm of Grocon, who built the QV complex)
3. GRD runs the main QV carpark (under the Safeway/Big-W)
4. GRD stands to make (a LOT) more money if more cars are parking in their carpark, rather than the residents' carpark.
Follow the money, & the motivations are rather transparent.
Why is Ross still chairperson, surely this is a (rather major) conflict of interest?
I'm going to try & make the meeting on Monday as well. I rent my unit but same concerns apply (I don't sublet - I understand the issue for owners with this but using care park's not going to help one bit)
Re penalty clauses in contracts - NotGuilty makes a good point however, for QV residents - there can be no breach of contract because there can be no contract....
Quoting from Care Park's 'terms and conditions'
By entering and remaining in this car park you enter into a contract with Care Park upon these terms and conditions...
1. You must obtain a valid parking permit and display it clearly....Park only in marked bays corresponding to the number on your parking permit
2. If you fail to comply with condition 1, you agree to pay liquidated damages of $88.00...
6. The services provided by Care Park will be rendered with due care & skill...
Big problem here is there's no consideration. What benefit or 'service' do we get from entering this supposed contract with Care Park? the right to park in the space we own/already have a right to park in? I don't see there can be any claim that a contract exists between residents & care park.
no contract means no breach of contract means no claim for liquidated damages
If I owned the unit I would be even more outraged by the cost the Body Corporate has incurred to print up all those signs they pasted around the building.
Here's some more info on behalf of a fellow resident currently suffering a dial up connection.
First, a fact sheet for those parkers who might receive a fine or notice of payment:
And a couple of media releases on care-park / fines generally:
Finally, some general notes, including additional sources of information:
Hope to see you this evening at 6pm!
What was your meeting like? What was raised with Care Park? What was the responses? Were the residents happy having the threat of been fined for parking on their property? Did the Body Corporate and Care Park back down or steam roll over the people at the meeting?
I still do not see this fixing any issues as the demand for payment mean very little.
1. It is not in the best interest of Care Park to take their demand for liquidity of damages to court â€“ if they lose â€“ More people will NOT PAY their demands for payment. Result â€“ Care Park in this instance is a toothless tiger
2. How do they think they are going to stop people from outside parking in the car park? Just get a sticker and give it to the person you are leasing the car park to. This will also fail!!!!
All Care Park will do is FINE people parking on their own land â€“ and if the sticker falls off the car windscreen (Can happen) or if Care Park needs more revenue it will be the residents who will PAY.
minutes were taken, they're currently under review and final copy will be posted here shortly.
1) Care-park stated that the proposed solution was opt-in and would supply signs for residents to opt-out;
2) The proposed engagement of Care-park is a 6 month trial, commencing 1 April 2009; and
3)The Committee will distribute the results of the trial to residents
Today (23rd March) I received a letter from GRD about the Care Park people which was to be returned to GRD by (22nd March)yesterday!! I am horrified by this situation. I am stunned that by merely entering the car park I will concidered entering into a contract. I am disgusted that the conditions read "Care Park may... revoke your licence to use ITS CAR park" since when did they get to own my car park? I thought that I owned it!! They also feel they "may enter, move or tow away my vehicle" but surely this is trespass, breaking and entering and theft!!
What right do GRD have to engage this company without due consultation with the owners and force a contract by the mere entering and using of our own property?
Hanayuki â€“ you cannot have a contract forced upon you â€“ a sign in front of your property is not a contract and will not be treated as one. Care Park has no right to making claims over your property â€“ they can claim anything.
Care Park are unable to revoke or restrict access to your property.
About trespass â€“ you are required to ask a person to leave your property before it can amount to trespass â€“ you can do this verbally or in writing. If Care Park remove or interfere with your property (Aka clamp or tow your vehicle) then you can have them charged with trespass or theft â€“ report them to the police and it becomes a police matter.
You are right â€“ GRD (I assume this is your owners Corporation) do not have any right to change the rules of using your car park without a majority vote. This can be taken at an AGM or a special meeting â€“ the person who chairs the meeting should have 25% of the lot holders liability votes or should be the chair of the Owners Corporation.
If you want to take this matter further you can contact
Consumers Affairs Victoria
Consumer Affairs Victoria
121 Exhibition Street
1300 55 81 81
Or Consumer Action Law Centre
Level 7, 459 Lt Collins St,
Melbourne, Victoria, 3000
03 9670 5088
You are best contacting the Consumer Action Law Center via email as they are too busy to answer their phones.
It should also be noted that both Care Park and your Owners Corporation are under the jurisdiction of both above mentioned departments.
Remember DO NOT sign anything that can be miss construed as a contract â€“ without a contract Care Park are powerless.
Thankyou for your reply. I have contacted Consumer Affairs by email and await their advice. Meanwhile I have sent GDR a letter advising them that I have no intention of entering into any contract with Care Park and advising them that my car park is my concern and business and mine alone and that they have fair warning that any notices place on my vehicle will be concidered as trespass, as is any interference with my vehicle and will be dealt with accordingly.
I think the Fair Trading Act (1999) Vic 32X parts e, f, and k are worth looking at. These indicate that the terms on the Care Park notice breach the Fair Trade act inregard to Unfair terms. Part f talks about permitting the supplier to assign the contract to the consumer's detriment without the consumer's consent.
If we refuse to enter the contract we must by logic not be allowed to enter the car park EVER and this would mean that the Body corporate are preventing us from permanently using our property. I am quite sure that only the police have powers to prevent an owner being able to use their own property when it is not being rented out to another party.
I await all outcomes with interest. Perhaps a class action may be worthwhile eventually.
Hanayuki - I suggest the Fair Trading Act (1999) Vic does not apply here as there has been NO goods or services supplied. And as such â€“ Care Park have no right to claim damages of liquidity as there is no goods or services supplied.
Just avoid entering into a contract with Care Park for a pretend service you do not want.
One other thing â€“ Kindly keep us updated with the progress with Consumer Affairs/Consumer action law centre.
I spoke to Consumer Affairs today. The lady I spoke to thinks that Care Park is providing a Service (ie a car park control service). Under Sect 12 of the Owners Corp Act a special resolution is required to provide a new service. Special resolutions need 75% votes. Ordinary resolutions only need 51%. (Does the Body corporate own 51% with a majority vote?)As no vote or discussion has taken place, then there seems to be a shaky ground for having the services of Care Park foistered on us. Even if GDR holds a majority and the outcome is a fait acomplie a vote should still be taken anyway.
She also thinks this is a matter for VCAT.
I spoke to Barbara Ross of GDR yesterday and it seems that there has been a difficult problem with space theft and many other Residential blocks have used Care Park with great success. This is on trial until the new financial year when there will be a review.
I believe that this a genuine attempt by GDR to solve a difficult problem and I accept that in good faith.
My main concern is about the Sticker part of the permit system as to me that means the permit can only be used on one car and more stickers are needed for each new car that you wish to let park in your spot (at a cost of $20 each). I would find this system acceptable if we had some sort of permit that could be placed on the dashboard and moved from car to car that just had the car park lot number displayed on it. Though this corresponds to your appartment number it would not be a sticker and could be just removed from the dash as you leave the car park.
What most annoys me is that we have to go through a rigmarole of getting the pass and pay for extra ones, without which we can be fined for a legitamate use of our property. Also I am pissed off with the wording of the terms, esp that merely entering the car park is being under a contract.
I know that this is not binding, but I think it is Care Park, not GDR that the issue lies. Their 'terms and conditions' contract is arrogant and as I think it is a service that they are providing, namely that of patrolling and policing our car park, it must contravene Fair Trade Act 1999 (Vic) 32X parts e, f, and k.
Hi all. Stumbled upon the forum via google because I'm also extremely unhappy about the arrangements GRD have made without my notice. I am an investor so I have a different perspective. My QV1 apartment is currently leased.
I received the Care Park letter in the mail today. It is dated the 6 March 2009, almost 3 weeks ago. Given pass dealings with GRD, guess a more timely letter would have been too much to ask for. The only letters GRD seems to get right are the Owner's Corporation Fee notices. I wonder why!
Here is a copy of the email that I will be sending to Barbara Ross regarding the notice I received. Thought I might share.
As an owner / investor in a QV1 apartment, I have some questions regarding the appointment of Care Park. Would appreciate it if you are able to provide the answers.
1. Was there a owner's vote regarding the appointment of Care Park to manage the car parking area? If not, are you able to explain why such an appointment did not require a resolution to be passed by the owners.
2. With the QV1 car parking space number being the same as the apartment number, I have real privacy concerns about non-residents being able to identify a resident's address based on the details contained on the Care Park pass. How are these being addressed?
3. I have real objections to points 4 and 5 listed in Care Park's terms and conditions. The idea of giving Care Park permissions to tow away my vehicle (even if parked correctly) or discretion to revoke a permit to park in a car space I own is not very appealing. What happens if I object to the T&C?
4. The whole concept of requiring a permit to park in a private car space that I own or risk a "liquidated damages" claim does not seem right. How do I go about opting my car space out of the arrangements made with Care Park?
I believe that the body corp is trying to solve the problem of illegal parking in some residents' carspace.
The problem is that they lacked communication. A simple letter under the door is rude and lack any explanation.
however, to answer some issues that was brought up:
1. The permit will be a static sticker that is transferable between cars. during the car park meeting, request have been made to remove any information that was going to be on the permit that will give away our location. so we're probably just gonna have something like "careepark lot ###"
2. Owner's have to authority to revoke any fines issued on their carspot. e.g. if a friend parked on your spot and got fined, owner can contact carepark to waive the fine. This is more reasonable but still extra work for us.
3. apparently during the owner's corp meeting in January, this proposal to ask carepark to manage the carpark was passed. i wasn't at the meeting but according to others, owner's corp possess majority of the votes anyway.
4. If you have any issues, contact body corp and let them know your concerns
5. Body corp will sent out a much more detailed information sheet about carepark and faq to us.
6. Its taking a while to do step number 5.
7. maybe they will just scrapped the carepark idea after so much trouble
I appreciate the body corporate's concerns regarding the problem of illegal parking in our building. What I do not appreciate is how the whole matter was being put out.
I agree it's extremely rude for them to notfiy us regarding Care Park via a sheet that was put under my door. I find it very appalling, it's as though they couldn't care less about what the residents might think about the idea.
What I want now is some clarity regarding Care Park. From what I've read so far, they sound very dodgy and it doesn't make sense for them to operate the business out of 'love'. Surely there's a catch somewhere in order for them to make some bucks. Even after the meeting that was held, I am still unsure about how it's going to go ahead.
Putting up a sign saying 'by entering the car park you agree to the terms and conditions of Care Park' is extremely rude. I never signed any contract, and I don't believe putting up a sign is enough for me to be bound by their terms and conditions. I am a rightful owner of my parking spot, I can park whenever I like and they don't have a bloody damn business to tell me what to do and what not to do.
I will NOT put up any stickers on my car, nor will I want to buy any extra stickers if I have guests coming over. I am already paying more than enough for the body corporate's fees.
Care Park will have to accomodate us, not the other way around.
CARE PARK SIGNS REMOVED
Went for a walk around the car park this morning all the signs have been removed including the one on the gate
Was this a silent retreat from care park? all too hard?
Well lets wait and see if we all recieve another notice under our doors for the next round
QV CASH COW 2009-03-28 21:04:26
Since then, all notices have been removed. Apologies for not uploading sooner, with the immediate removal of the signs, I got slack.
Please refer to this link for the draft minutes, as issued to all:
Following this issue, amendments were received from a resident present at the meeting:
"When he said it was illegal to tow - I asked why CP's contract stipulated they would tow - received no answer.
There was zero clarity from BR about the current state of the parking issue - ie, no baseline measurement for current performance of existing measures, re people parking in other people's spaces. She cleared stated that success would be assessed based on "an improved situation" - yet, without any existing measurement, how will anyone be able to tell if things have improved or not?
There was also discussion about the possibility of an "on call" system - which seemed to meet general approval. Was certainly more welcome than the proposed methodology."
Amendments were also received from GRD:
Of particular note are:
* 15 / 458 consent forms were received
Further to our meeting, I have received an update from Barbara Ross:
"As I mentioned there was a Committee Meeting held to discuss the Care Park issue. Unfortunately, there was not a quorum present so any decisions that were made that evening are at present interim decisions for 29 days.
It was agreed by those present that the Chairman write on behalf of the committee to all owners and residents asking their participation on how they see the illegal parking issue could be solved. A special email address is to be set up for these responses. After the nominated cut off date the committee will reassess the matter based on the responses recieved."
I have responded with a request for further clarification of how to submit responses, due dates and the like. So far no response and no letter in the post - might be worth making submissions to the Body Corporate letterbox if you want to.
I got my letter from the chairman in my box today
Option 1 to 4 all bear a cost to someone
I am going with option 5 "do nothing"
For the last 6 months our security has been compromised by having unsecured access by faulty lifts in QV only now have they been fixed.
I dont see any major problems with the car park and find that any further actions are not needed
And can some one advise me if these notices should go back to OC with or without my apartment number attached
It seems to me that Barbara Ross is no longer the body corporate manager of QV. I was wondering why QV residents are not informed about it. I would like to observe how future matters relating to body corp. matters will be handled.
Do any current QV residents have any thoughts about the current condition of the choose-floor buttons in the lifts that have been frequently vandalised by inconsiderate users?
QVres, I certainly agree with your suggestion. Installing hidden security cameras in lifts is a basic necessity that a private apartment should have. I have seen most city apartments do have these cameras installed in their lifts, as this would effectively deter anyone from vadalising/damaging any of the lift components during operation. I find it rather appalling that anyone would act in such an inconsiderate manner. I presume that such an act could also present a non-positive value for QV residents/investors. On the other hand, I do wonder why the building management has not been be able to provide the most effective material for the choose-floor buttons. Most choose-floor buttons installed in city apartments are composed of a metallic material and they are intact unlike those seen in QV lifts. Perhaps would it be worthwhile for QV residents to raise this issue in the next annual general meeting?
I raised the lift cameras with B ross some time ago and she indicated to me that they were going to be installed
Having them obviously fitted in the lifts would be a deterrant in them selves rather than hiding them covertly
Surely after replacing these lift buttons so many times a more permanent style should be used
If you remember the lifts a little while ago they would give free access to many floors but since they installed 2 locks to the service panel the lifts are now again secure.
It was proven that a person with knowledge of elevator workings was opening the panels and tampering with the lift buttons giving free access to most floors, a camera would have certainly identified this person or most proberly would have averted the event in the first place
There are a total of 2 body corp (BD) fees (No. 1 & No. 2) for the apartment as well as the car space with label PT. The two fees may not apply individually to the apartment and to the car space (PT). The No. 1 BD fees (at least $100) are paid on an annual basis, whilst the No. 2 BD fees (at least $1000) are paid on a quarterly basis. I presume there are some apartments with 1 car space, that have also an additional car space (but on a separate title), there comes the "C" spaces with their own number that do not reflect the apt. I am not particularly certain that there would be 2 body corp fees applicable to a car space with a separate title. Does anyone/residents have any knowledge if it is normal for a car space in city to have 2 body corporate?
Some times a building that has both commercial and residential property is set up with separate bodies corporate. However unless an individual owned both a commercial and a residential property in the building, fees would only be payable to one of these, unless some part of the operation was delegated to one of these bodies, eg the insurance on the building.
The parking space should either be common property allowing anyone to park in it or a designated space that is listed on the title to the property.
I've just had some unfortunate dealings with these jerks, they even made a veiled threat when I dared suggest they grossly invaded my privacy by accessing my RTA records.
Twice I wrote to then demanding they explain to me how they arrive at the grossly-inflated figure of their 'liquidated damages' and they can provide nothing apart from it being an 'estimate'.
In my opinion they are running a scam and would be out of business tomorrow if each state government closed the mechanism they use to access our records.
I have, under protest, elected to pay their $66.00 'fine' just to make them go away. I'm sure the law firm they utilise to do their dirty-work must feel so proud they are practising law in such an honourable fashion.
Can anything be done about these people? They are just parasites.
I have had significant experience with attempts by various large Owners Corporations around Melbourne that have attempted to control illegal parking. Unfortunately the nature of "human behaviour" when an opportunity to get a free car park exists is such that any attempt to control this behaviour turns ugly most times. I manage staff in various developments whom get verbally assaulted by owners and residents when 'that' car has remained there for the week and in fact there is nothing building management can do.
Many OC's have sought out companies to solve this issue and it is so grey an area that only legislation that gives building management or the car park owner the right to have the car removed will see a result. If anyone out there has any influence on the State Government to properly address this growing issue of cars effectively parked on private property, please use it.
Obviously having been involved in discussions to try and resolve removal of cars from 'private car parks' I have built up some knowledge - but, Hey I'm just trying to make sense of it all like most in this forum. I address OC's over many issues and this one is not going away.
strategicFM for some info strategicFM
The law in this area is not grey at all. What the person parking is doing is trespass. You can take them to court and claim damages. You can also call the council or the cops and have the car towed (and yes you can have the vehicles towed yourself; you just can't claim the costs of doing so or any other costs, can't detain the vehicle and may be liable for damage caused).
The law of distress damage feasant was abolished precisely to ensure that people could not take the law into their own hands by clamping vehicles and claiming extortionate damages, and there was adequate oversight of such towing of vehicles. Hence, now that that particular medieval relic has been swept away, the likelihood of it being revived is so remote as to be non-existent.
There are plenty of options available to OCs that have illegal parking problems.
For example, if you're a big OC, you could enter into an agreement with the council to patrol your land.
There's also individual barriers that can be placed on the individual parking spots by owners such as those made by Lok-up et al. You can also put a gate up to prevent entry.
One also wonders why these OCs have these problems in the first place. I suspect it is more an unwillingness to spend money on prevention. After all, prevention is better than cure for all concerned. If you're not willing to close off the opportunity to have people park against the OC's wishes, then I for one will not offer much sympathy.
surroundfan 2010-04-19 23:38:30
In practice the Police have approached owners in buildings (as late as last year) who have arranged removal of cars parked in their private spots and attempted to interview and charge the owner of the lot with theft of a motor car (It's true). Owners come downstairs at various buildings and ask staff what they can do. The response is "We as staff can not touch the car or will will be charged with interferring with a motor vehicle and if we advise you to do something we are a party and aiding and abetting an offence". The Council does not want to know and will not give advice re removal. Tickets can be given every day, but when a car sits there for a month and even the Police who will check if it is stolen are "Technically" not allowed to give us the owners address because they are breaching the rights of the owner of the offending vehicle and could be charged themselves for giving us a name or address. Obviously there have been some serious repurcussions for innocent parties, police and tow truck drivers (who won't go near an offending luxury car) here for these people to shut up shop and not assist the aggrieved party.
Option two of course is to turn the car park lights out, turn the building cameras off and push the offending vehicle out (watch those porsches and ferraris with their security systems)but don't get caught and don't scratch them or you will be sued (ask a few towies who got paid cash to remove a car by a car park lot owner). And it's not rocket science when they ask for the camera footage because their illegally parked car is missing and blow me down someone turned the cameras off or they mysteriously failed for those 5 minutes.
Off course I can not advocate that course of action. It really depends quite often on what the OC Committees allow in the way of "Counter Measures". Some do not allow the individual car park barriers because it doesn't fit with the ambience of the car park.
Any time a cop questions the removal of the car, point them in the direction of s 90B(2) of the Road Safety Act 1986. There is absolutely nothing illegal about removing a vehicle (or anything else) from your own property provided you don't damage it in the process.
However, the experiences you describe indicate precisely the risks involved in using self-help in this day and age. Owners corporations that do their own thing risk all sorts of legal action. If the law is changed to once again allow vehicles to be towed away, that risk will increase many times over precisely because the owners of vehicles will be more (not less) likely to sue the owners corporation.
If the owners corporation is more worried about the ambiance of the car park rather than deterring trespass, then the owners who control it cannot sincerely turn around and bitch about the trespass when it does occur.
I find it a bit interesting that th OC is being referred to like they are another party who are working against you as owners. You owners are the OC and will probably find that if you read your minutes that decisions on car parking are in there. If not it is probably in the committee minutes who you elected to represent you. No OC Manager with half a brain (or a slim understanding of the legislation) would commit to a contract without the OC approving it in the right way first.