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Ordinary Resolutions: How are they passed?

The majority of motions put to general meetings are decided by ordinary resolution. Some require a majority resolution, and others require a special resolution (such as voting to not require an audit).

Unless legislation requires a majority or special resolution, the body corporate must decide a motion by ordinary resolution. An ordinary resolution is the simplest resolution. Out of all votes cast, the motion can only be passed if there are more ‘YES’ votes than ‘NO’ votes.

So what if there are 10 votes cast, and it’s split 5:5? The question to be asked is, are the ‘YES’ votes more than the ‘NO’ votes? The answer is no – they are equal. If the votes are equal, the motion must fail.

We have had people who think that an equal vote means it passes, or that the committee or chairperson has a deciding vote. This is wrong. An ordinary resolution requires a majority vote, and 50% is not a majority. The committee or any executive member also does not get a deciding vote. The executive committee positions merely carry out certain procedural functions and they have absolutely no extra power. Their votes are identical to anyone else’s. Any motion with equal ‘YES’ and ‘NO’ votes must fail.

This article is intended as general information only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. For specific legal advice please contact us here.


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