Security Cameras on Common Property QLD

Discussion in 'Legal Issues' started by Lindsay_W, 14th Feb, 2020.

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  1. Lindsay_W

    Lindsay_W Well-Known Member

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    I own an apartment in a building in QLD with 6 units in total.
    I've been advised that 2 of the lot owners have recently installed security cameras on the eaves of the building (the eaves above their balconies ie. common property) One points towards the road and one points towards the driveway of the building and street beyond.
    The BC Committee was not consulted prior to the installations - By Laws state owners cannot install any permanent fixtures, drive nails or screws into any area of Common Property without approval of the Committee first, so Body Corp has asked the lot owners to remove them.
    I'm wanting to know, can the Lot owners, committee or body corp manager be liable for breaches of the Surveillance Devices Act (or any other legal action) that arises from having these cameras installed without approval?
    Should the Committee seek independent legal advice regarding installation of security cameras on the premises IF they decide they want them?
    Who should control and store the footage?
    Are there any other issues the Committee should consider?
    Currently no one has access to the footage apart from the lot owners that installed the cameras.
     
  2. Paul@PFI

    [email protected] Tax Accounting + SMSF Business Plus Member

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    Lindsay_W likes this.
  3. Redwing

    Redwing Well-Known Member

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    @Terry_w

    This was interesting in the link from @[email protected]

    In Western Australia, it is illegal to record a private conversation without the consent of all parties involved

    Had a google and

    https://www.who.com.au/is-it-legal-to-record-a-phone-call-in-australia
     
  4. Terry_w

    Terry_w Lawyer, Tax Adviser and Mortgage broker in Sydney Business Plus Member

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    Its probably illegal in all states to record private conversions - not sure if consent is needed or just informing the the party.
     
  5. d_walsh

    d_walsh Well-Known Member

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    Lawyer once told me - record the conversation, convert to written record then delete the verbal recording.

    Verbal recording can’t be used, written one can.
     
  6. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    Interesting. In some newsworthy cases, written transcripts have been disputed, or suggestions made they are biased one way or another, imagined or even totally made up.

    A recording is clear, and cannot be disputed, though clearly may not be legal in some states or countries without the consent of both parties.
     
  7. Lindsay_W

    Lindsay_W Well-Known Member

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    I guess this raises another question, do the cameras have the ability to record sound.

    Thanks for the responses so far.
    The owners that are against the cameras are are worried the footage isn't going to be stored correctly or not be able to be accessed by everyone. That and the fact that they're installed on common property without prior consent of the committee.
    The owners that are opposed to the cameras are the ones that don't live in the building..
    I never knew such a small building could have so much drama :rolleyes:
     
  8. Paul@PFI

    [email protected] Tax Accounting + SMSF Business Plus Member

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    Recording sound isnt a concern. Recording private conversations may be if the use of the recording was a breach. I would argue that the video in question would not be used and not even reviewed until a event requiring police assistance was involved. Then you have a lawful use of the sound. Every time you buy fuel, walk into a bank, drive on a highway etc and even many intersections and street and private property can incidentally or deliberately record you. And how so many crimes are solved now.

    This one can be attached to a mobile phone charger battery and record video on motion incl infrared. And nobody would know. Hides anywhere. We used it to nick an alleged vandal around our work. A malicious former contractor. Cops gave him astern talking to and its never happened since. Hmmmm (He knew where all the fixed camera were).

    Global Shop Direct - Australia's home of great As Seen on TV ideas! | Global Shop Direct - As Seen On TV

    So many people think its illegal to record or photo someone or something - its not.
     
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  9. Lindsay_W

    Lindsay_W Well-Known Member

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    Ok so if in a public space no issues recording sound if it happens to catch a private conversation it would be unreasonable to expect that no one would hear in a public space?
    I believe you're correct that the footage wouldn't be used UNLESS an incident happens, I'm personally not worried about it as the cameras point onto common property and public property (street and footpath) and I would be surprised if they could actually record a conversation from the street as they're high up on the eaves of the building.
    Some owners are dead against them though and giving these seemingly far fetched reasons not to have them.