Pet lovers it is time to rejoice, every single apartment in NSW have been disallowed to place blanket bans on pets for residents. This comes after a recent NSW Court of Appeal ruling which has overturned the right for apartment blocks to prohibit animals.
It sounds unbelievable, but it’s actually a reality. Finally, your apartment can have an adorable companion, as long as you live within NSW. Of course, there are still some technicalities to go through, but ultimately all blanket bans on pets are no longer be allowed.
This court decision has come as the conclusion to a four-year battle conducted by Jo Cooper, who was fighting for quite some time to keep her miniature schnauzer named Angus.
Cooper, who lives in the 43-storey Horizon apartment building in Darlinghurst, was subject to the blanket ban on pets that the building has had for multiple years, and has been fighting against it to allow her companion to live with her.
Needless to say, Cooper finally won her fight, and because of her, there are now a few changes in whether or not apartment blocks are able to place bylaws that ban pets.
Horizon was also ordered to pay for the four-year-long hearings, being asked to fork out around $500,000. So yeah, it was a big win for the people and their little furry friends.
So what does this all mean for pet lovers? Well, time to dive into court technicalities, but essentially everything you just read about Horizon and Jo Cooper will forever change how the courts look at pet bans.
Because of this ruling, which saw an unanimous decision made by three judges, no building in the entire state of NSW will be able to place a blanket ban that says no to our furry companions. Now ain’t that a win.
Tenants who live within strata apartments, however, are still liable to follow landlord pet bans. Basically, the new ruling only changes apartments giving out blanket bans on our furry friends.
Barrister Richard Gration, who both lives in Horizon and represented them in court, told Domain that “the effect of this is extremely far-reaching.”
“It’s now not possible to have a blanket ban on animals. If there is to be any ban, then it has to be tailored to protect the amenity of other lot owners, so a bylaw can only exist to restrict, say, barking dogs or screeching cockatoos.
“This does put limits on the extent that owners can democratically create rules for their own buildings, and bylaws now can’t be used for anything people do in their own lot that doesn’t affect others.
“It’s now going to be difficult for those who have a genuine fear of dogs, or who are very allergic to dog and cat hair.”
This decision can now only be challenged if someone marches straight to the High Court, which someone is probably gonna try in the upcoming months, but as for now, it’s mostly freedom for the pets.