Caution: The content on this website is intended as general information only and should not be relied on as legal advice. Views expressed in articles, alerts and other publications may not apply to the circumstances of a specific case, and are subject to change as a result of legislative amendments and court or tribunal decisions. Readers should obtain their own up-to-date independent legal advice before making any decisions that affect their rights.

Strata Alert: Ontario Court of Appeal confirms ‘business judgment rule’ applies to condominium boards

A recent decision from the Ontario Court of Appeal in 3716724 Canada Inc. v. Carleton Condominium Corporation No. 375, 2016 ONCA 650, confirmed that the business decisions regularly made by condominium boards should be accorded the same level of deference as the business decisions of for-profit corporations.

The lawsuit stemmed from a decision of a condominium board refusing to allow the owner of commercial parking strata […]

Strata Alert: BC Human Rights Tribunal holds strata accountable for failing to deal with second hand smoke complaints

In a ruling likely to have repercussions across British Columbia, the BC Human Rights Tribunal has found a strata corporation liable for failing to accommodate an owner’s disability in relation to second-hand smoke.

As is often the case with second-hand smoke complaints, the unit owner had complained […]

Strata Alert: Commercial unit owner forced to pay back Condo Corporation for 6 years of hydro expenses despite a 2 year limitation period

In a decision from the Ontario Superior Court, Middlesex Condominium Corp. No. 195 v. Sunbelt Business Centres (Canada) Inc., a condominium corporation was successful in its claim to recover six years’ worth of hydro expenses from the owner of several commercial units on the basis that the hydro had exclusively been used by those units.

All 28 commercial units in the seven-storey mixed-use condominium […]

Tips For Preparing For Your Claim Against Your Nightmare Strata Neighbour

A dreaded scenario of condo home ownership is the nightmare neighbour. This is a neighbour that causes a severe nuisance by creating excessive noise, vandalizing common property or harassing others. They make living in peace impossible. Strata corporations struggle with such owners because the process for enforcing the bylaws through the courts is lengthy and expensive.

How the courts have dealt with nightmare neighbour situations has been […]

Strata Alert: Court of Appeal Clarifies Requirements for Rental Restriction Bylaws – Endorses a Wait List Model

In the recent decision of Mathews v. The Owners, Strata Plan VR 90, 2016 BCCA 345, the Court of Appeal has clarified the legal requirements for rental restriction bylaws and overturned a previous decision of the BC Supreme Court in Carnahan v. The Owners Strata Plan LMS5222014 BCSC 2375.

Under s. 141 of the Strata Property Act (SPA), a strata corporation may pass a bylaw restricting the total number or percentage of strata lots […]

Strata Alert: Strata Property Act amendments concerning strata terminations now in force

Amendments to the Strata Property Act permitting owners to voluntarily terminate a strata corporation are now in force.  Under the new procedure, strata owners can terminate their strata corporation by an 80 percent vote of all eligible voters instead of the previous unanimous vote requirement. The procedural changes include getting a BC Supreme Court order confirming the winding up resolution, which will be required in most cases.

These changes are being widely touted as “benefiting” owners, although how owners will benefit from these changes are not well understood.  Older stratas remain an important part of the provinces’

Strata Alert: Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) Early Intake Starts Next Week

The CRT is an online tribunal, which will adjudicate less complicated strata related disputes and other  civil claims of up to $25,000.  Some of the strata related issues the CRT can resolve include:
bylaw infractions and enforcement;non-payment of strata fees or fines;meeting conduct irregularities;unfair actions by the strata corporation;issues relating to the common property;interpretation of the legislation, regulations or bylaws.

The CRT promises to be an affordable and convenient forum to resolve common strata […]

Strata Alert: Condo Corporation awarded over $800,000 in legal costs in recovery of $300,000 in owner arrears

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently upheld a trial judge’s decision to award nearly $300,000 in common expense arrears that were owed to an Ontario condominium corporation, together with over $800,000 in associated legal costs. Yes, you read that right.

The defendants were the owners of 23 of 33 condominiums in a commercial condo complex in Ontario (the “Condo”). The Condo commenced an action in 2009 to obtain $289,070 in unpaid condo fees and special assessments, as well as an order for vacant possession of their 23 units. The main defendant C.A. Burdet, attempted to thwart the Condo’s action by transferring […]

Strata Alert: How to get into people’s strata lots without their permission

Elena Balland v York Condominium Corporation No. 201, 2016 ONSC 2405

No, this is not a primer on how to commit the perfect B&E.  You can find many detailed “how to’s” for that on the Internet.

This post is about an all too common situation that arises when a strata corporation needs access to an owner’s unit and the owner refuses to cooperate. For example, many stratas conduct maintenance that occasionally requires access […]

Consumer Protection is an Objective of Strata Law When it Comes to a Developer’s Obligations in a Phased Strata Development

In the recent decision of The Owners, Strata Plan LMS 1495 v. 0753874 B.C. Ltd., 2015 BCSC 2124, the Supreme Court of BC reconfirmed that one of the objects of the Strata Property Act is consumer protection.

The case centered on whether an owner developer was liable to a phased strata corporation for common expenses. The Strata Property Act says that an owner developer must contribute to the common expense in proportion to the unit entitlement of the strata lots of the phases of the strata corporation that have not yet been completed. For example, if Phase 1 of a 2-phase strata has been completed but Phase 2 has not, then the owner developer must pay the common expenses of Phase 2 just like the eventual owners of Phase 2 when that phase is […]