In this case, court proceedings were commenced seeking an order pursuant to section 92(2) of the Unit Titles Act 1970 (ACT) that David Bowditch be appointed an administrator of the owners corporation. The facts were not in any significant dispute and the real issue was whether the circumstances were such as to justify the appointment of an administrator.
Miles CJ noted that ‘there is no express guidance in this section 92 or elsewhere in the Unit Titles Act about how the discretion to grant or refuse the appointment of an administrator is to be exercised’ but concluded that equitable principles and those for the appointment of receivers and managers seemed appropriate.
The facts of the case are involved and are not of general application so they do not require detailed description here. Suffice to say, the plaintiff set out a number of reasons justifying the appointment of an administrator. Notwithstanding this, His Honour ultimately held that ‘nothing has been shown on the evidence to constitute anything like improper conduct on the part of the body corporate or of any of the members of the committee. Whilst the exercise of the discretion under section 92 appears to be very wide, the application, by analogy, of the principles of equity and the law of corporations does not furnish any reason so far as the conduct of the body is concerned to justify its replacement by an administrator. The administration of the units and the common property do not require the appointment of an administrator’ (at para 38).