A ‘proxy’ can mean two things: an actual ‘proxy’ and also a ‘proxy vote’. A proxy is someone you appoint to cast your vote for you. If your proxy casts your vote, then they cast a proxy vote. A committee member can have a proxy at a committee meeting and a lot owner can have a proxy at a general meeting. So, what are the restrictions on proxy use at a body corporate meeting under the Standard Module?
At a general meeting of the body corporate, the body corporate can by special resolution restrict proxies in any way. If there is no such restriction, then there are some other general restrictions.
If there are less than 20 lots, a person can only hold one proxy. If there are more than 20 lots, the person cannot hold more proxies than 5% of lots. This means if there are 20 to 39 lots, only one proxy can be held. If there are 40 to 59 lots, then two proxies can be held.
If a co-owner gives a proxy to another person, but the other co-owner is present, then that proxy cannot be used. For example, if a husband and wife own a lot, and wife has given a proxy to another person, and the husband is at the meeting, that proxy can no longer be used.
Generally the following cannot have a proxy used:
If the person who gave the proxy (or their co-owner) is present;
any motion that the person who gave the proxy has already voted on in writing or electronic voting;
any ballot or choosing of committee members;
a special resolution to:
- restrict the use of proxies; or
- consenting to a new CMS;
any vote that requires a majority resolution;
a motion approving the engagement, or termination, of a body corporate manager, service contractor, or letting agent;
a motion decided by secret ballot;
if the scheme is a principal scheme in a layered scheme;
if the general meeting is called to replace a vacant committee position;
anything else in a regulation requiring no vote by proxy.
A body corporate manager cannot act as a proxy for anyone.
It is an offence to cast a proxy vote if you know you are not entitled to do so. Proxies should be given carefully in general meetings, as you are effectively giving your vote entirely to someone else.
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.