QLD Property Law - What are Our Property Right as Landowners?

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Lisa Clarkin

17 February 2016

I am desperate for some answers regarding a property my partner owns and we occupy together with our children.

We allowed another party to build a livable shed "granny flat" on the property providing she organised and paid for the correct council approvals to do so. After recently receiving a phone call from our local council, it has been brought to our attention she has not gained the requirements to live in the dwelling or to have it connected to water, power or sewage.

Needless to say, we have been given a timeframe in order to disconnect all amenity's and remove her from the premises in order to save ourselves from certain legal actions being taken against us being owners of the property.

My question is what property rights do we have under Property Law to remove her from the property with her belongings before legal action is taken against us as she has refused to budge thinking that, as the owner of the building, she has rights over the land?

I look forward to prompt feedback.



Hi there,

I'm not a properly law expert, but I would say that while she may retain some equitable interest in the dwelling, she would not have rights to occupy it if it is illegal.

In addition to that any contract that you made with her regarding the building of the dwelling on condition that she obtain all the necessary approvals - has been breached by her if those approvals were not obtained entitling you to either damages or restitution. In addition, illegal activity is also considered breach of contract for which the innocent party can be compensated.

As registered property owner I would say you have grounds to evict her from the dwelling. As I said she may have equitable rights to ownership of the structure but not the right to occupy it if its illegal. If she fails to comply with your demands for her to disconnect and move out then I would be changing locks and disconnecting yourself to avoid legal action. Also tell her you will be taking matters into your own hands if she fails to do it.
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