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Ask Deborah Awyzio Your Own Question
Deborah Awyzio
Deborah Awyzio, Solicitor
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 863
Experience:  Bachelor of Laws (QUT), BIT (QUT), Family Law Accredited Specialist, over 12 years experience
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I'm Gail we have recently been living beside a house that

Customer Question

Hi I'm Gail we have recently been living beside a house that has been occupied by people that have not paid their rent for 2 years , they have now been evicted but they have caused no end of trouble to me buy getting my horses kicked off my property. I own my property and it was originally rural residential but has been re zoned residential and so now i cant keep my horses here .because of a complaint that squatters made I don't know if I have any rights against the council??
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Australia Law
Expert:  Leon replied 2 years ago.
Good Evening,My name is ***** ***** I am a NSW Solicitor. Thank you for your question, and will do my best to assist you with your question. Please understand this is not legal advise Please understand this is not legal advise but a guide to assist you.How did they get your horses kicked off your property?What did they do to cause this? If council has changed the zoning, it makes the decision on what can and cannot be kept on the land.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
They made a complaint about my horses after I had complained to council that they had 8 dogs the stench of the dog faeces and the barking of the dogs and the Vermin coming from the property because they left rubbish everywhere. I was then issued with a local law compliance notice that stated that a person must not undertake a prescribed activity (keeping of animals) without a current approval. and to cease the keeping of horses in an urban area. I have previously kept my horses here for the past 8 years no complaints by any of the adjoining property owners. these people have been living in the house next door for 2 years not paying rent and I just don't understand how this sort of scum can have any rights against a property owner. I have been told that I can never have them back here.
I know of 3-4 other people in this town that are keeping horses on urban properties since this re zoning from rural residential to residential occurred without any ones knowledge. It just doesn't seem fair that you can purchase a property as rural res and then find out 10years later that it was actually rezoned a couple of years after you bought it but no one bothered to inform you. and then squatters can have a say and get your horses kicked off.
Expert:  Leon replied 2 years ago.
Good EveningHow long ago did the council change the zoning?By them complaining they simply bought your activity to the councils attention. What you were doing was not allowed. Will council permit you to keep the animals if you make an application?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yes I realise this but i just feel that it isn't fair due to them being squatters and also it was only after i made a complaint about them that they made a complaint about me they really did not have any issues with the horses in fact I actually gave them rides on my horses when they first came to the area, it was merely a means that they could get back at me.
Re zoning apparently happened way back in 2005 applied 2007 but no one in the whole area knew about it all my neighbours thought that we were rural res until I told them when I recently found out only when making the complaint as rural res can have 3 dogs, res 2 dogs, when they had eight, I have nothing against dogs but they just kept getting more and more and did not look after them, exercise or feed them adequately and did not clean up the faeces. I have applied to keep them but they have denied my application. What I am trying to establish is that 8 years of good behaviour if you like, all my other neighbours are willing to sign to say they have never had a problem and also the change of zoning precedence of having 8 years of occupancy, and the council knew about my horses they drive past regularly they just had to act on the complaint and I acknowledge this. What I am trying to find out is if I have a case to build with prior right re 8 years of keeping before this event if that makes any sense ?
Expert:  Leon replied 2 years ago.
Good Evening, I understand what you are saying, but there is nothing you can do about their actions because the law said you cannot keep horses on your land because of the zoning. If the council is not approving your application, you can appeal that decision and take it to court. If the court accepts your arguments they will override councils decision. The fact they allowed the horses to stay after the re-zoning will work in your favour. You should get the council file on your property and the neighbours before you do anything so you have an understanding of what has been going on. This can be done under Freedom of Information. You also should look at the zoning and see what it actually says and how you can use it for your case. I hope this makes sense and is of assistance?