Some highlighted changes to the 2018 version of Joint Form of General Conditions (JFGC), might mean that you could see some differences to the 2011 JFGC.
Please note, we are not lawyers and are merely relaying some discussions as generically covered in an industry forum.
The biggest concern was the ‘Lawyers picnic’ referenced as clause 9.3, where opposing lawyers could argue just about any outcome they desired, for a breach of warranty.
Service by email still needed to be ‘signed’ and in writing, so as an attachment to an email is most likely outcome.
The Buyers ‘Right to inspect’ was arguably removed, unless there was a Seller obligation or condition of the contract, then that additionally included a right to re-inspect, to check if Seller has rectified an identified issue, under the contract.
Early Possession remained the same if under one (1) month. However the REIWA JFGC-18 states that Parties must comply with the Residential Tenancy Act (RTA) if Possession was granted for period of one (1) month or more.
Which differs from the RTA which specifies a minimum of three (3) months.
Personal Properties Securities Act and Regulations (PPSA & R) must be dealt with if the Buyer request by Notice.
The inclusion of the ‘Withholding tax’ and ‘electronic conveyancing’ clauses were more or less as per REIWA previous annexures. However it could be argued that if doing an e-settlement and there is no signed Paper Transfer then that Party might not be able to claim ‘Ready Willing and Able’ to settle. Along with removing a Party’s Default if the other Party (NB: not Agent/Representative- worth noting that ONLY ‘registered subscribers’ have access to the workspace ie; Lawyers, Conveyancors, or Authorised Deposit-Taking Institutions) or their Financial Institution, has failed to comply with an obligation in the Workspace.
‘Future Lot’ AKA ‘Off the Plan Contract’ (where seller is not the registered owner at the time of the sale) clause additions brings the contract in line with the April 2016 changes to the Sale of Land Act.
At The REIWA information session, a mention of the significance of Representations made as if seller has wrote cl. 9 & 10(strata) as part of the contract…
‘Property Conditions Reports’ are suggested to present to buyer before entering O&A.
Source: Summary from AICWA an evening with MGB legal – Nathan filled in for Matthew Ellis who was apparently sick… Also an honorable mention from a REIWA presentation.