Who is to blame for a collapsed balcony of a leased property? The managing agent of the property? The tenant? The landlord? These are difficult questions and the answer will often depend on the circumstances of each case.
A landlord has a duty to ensure residential premises are structurally sound, reasonable fit for purpose and that defects that are known or ought to be known are repaired (Jones v Bartlett (2000) 205 CLR 166)
A landlord may discharge its duty of care regarding property maintenance by engaging a competent managing agent and are entitled to a contractual indemnity from the managing agent.
In accordance with the decision of Libra Collaroy Pty Ltd v Bhide  NSWCA 196, where a landlord is (or ought to be) aware of a risk of harm, and the agent is not discharging its delegated duties competently, the landlord has a duty to take reasonable steps to ensure the agent addresses the risk.
Libra was a case which involveda balcony which collapsed due to deterioration of structural beams.
To obtain advice regarding your position following an injury at a rental property, please contact McAuley Lawyers on (02) 9633 1826 or email email@example.com.
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