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Enforcement of rules - Dispute Resolution Part 3

In our last newsletter we looked at how trustees can effect maintenance and repairs to a unit for the unit owner's account.

In this newsletter we look the different dispute resolution options for a scheme.

Ensuring harmony amongst the residents of a scheme can be a tough job and having an effective dispute resolution mechanism is critical to ensure the good management and long-term wellbeing of the scheme, not to mention the sanity of the trustees!

So what options are available for dispute resolution?

Internal mediation

Here trustees utilize their discretion in attempting to resolve a problem. This could be by way of telephone calls to the warring parties, by arranging a friendly round table meeting, or a one on one get together to thrash out the problem, and come to an agreement which everyone can live with.


The court route may be suitable for matters involving high values or complication issues although many judges do not wish to become embroiled in domestic disputes and send the parties back to settle in any event.

Private arbitration

Parties must agree to go to private arbitration for this route to be followed. If parties cannot agree on an arbitrator, an organization such as the Association of Arbitrators can appoint an arbitrator. Parties must agree upfront on the rules to apply to the arbitration and whether or not the award could be made by a court order.

In Part 4 of this newsletter we will look at an alternative to these options namely the Community Schemes Ombud Service.

Article courtesy of Marina Constas and Karen Bleijs Demystifying Sectional Title

Johannesburg | Durban | Cape Town | Bloemfontein | Port Elizabeth | Pretoria

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