Maryna holds the BA, LLB, LLM degrees and is a Director at the Cape Town offices of STBB. She is an admitted Attorney, Notary Public and Conveyancer with many years of experience in the field of property law and conveyancing. She is also the firm's Marketing Director and attends to external publications for the firm as well as conducts ongoing training for estate agent and bankers training and is a regular seminar presenter for attorneys and property practitioners.

Property Law Update | Dispute referral to the Ombud: Essentially there for issues that bear on the community, says the court

Prag N.O and Another v Trustees for the time being of the Mitchell’s Plain Industrial Enterprises Sectional Title Scheme Body Corporate and Others (A260/2020) [2021] ZAWCHC 132 (16 July 2021)

This is an interesting judgment following on a claim by an owner for damages arising from a fire that gutted his section, against the body corporate. The claim was lodged at the Community Schemes Ombud for payment of the costs of repair to the unit. Apart from many other disputes addressed in the judgment, the court made it clear that the Ombud’s preliminary rejection of the claim was right, as it did not have jurisdiction. This was because the fire damaged the section only and thus, on the facts of this matter, did not involve a matter relating to the common property in the scheme. Thus, when considering lodging a dispute at the Ombud’s office, it is savvy to first get expert advice.

As an aside, it is also important for bodies corporate/sectional title owners to note why the sectional title scheme’s insurer refused the claim.

The Judgment
Summary of the Judgment