Following this week’s budget announcement and the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills report, ‘Fixing the Foundations: creating a prosperous nation’, a great deal has been said about the opportunities to increase house building. The headline being that removing barriers to gaining planning consent will reduce risks for developers, and so it is hoped will boost property development.
Kate Galloway: James Cook University
In 2011 Queensland updated its legislation concerning dividing fences disputes, introducing the Neighbourhood Disputes (Dividing Fences and Trees) Act 2011 (‘Act’). The Act significantly overhauls the earlier Dividing Fences Act particularly through the introduction of a jurisdiction concerning trees.
Looking through the Act recently, I was noticed that the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (‘QCAT’) had jurisdiction not only over trees that dropped branches onto neighbours’ land or those which posed a danger to the neighbours. Under s66, QCAT may also make an order relating to ‘interference that is an obstruction of sunlight or a view’. This raises the question of the basis on which such an order may be made. In particular I am interested in whether this creates, by implication, a property right.