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Abou El Naaj v. Peel Standard Condominium Corporation No. 935 - 2021 ONCAT 5 - 2021-01-21

Corporation:

ANPSCC 935

Date:

2021-01-21

Under:

CAT Decisions - Decision
Access to Records
Entitlement to Records
Fees, Costs, Penalties

Summary:

The case titled "Abou El Naaj v Peel Standard Condominium Corporation No 935" brought before the Condominium Authority of Ontario involved an owner's request for records and the condo corporation's failure to respond. The applicant claimed that the respondent did not comply with requests for records, did not provide requested records, and unreasonably delayed the provision of some of the requested records. The dispute originated from the applicant being entitled to receive copies of the records as stipulated in Section 55 of the Condominium Act 1998, which outlines the rights of owners to access records. The respondent failed to participate in the hearing, leading to a penalty of $2500 and an order to provide the outstanding records at no cost. The case underscores the importance of record-keeping procedures, tenant's rights to information, and transparency within condominium corporations.

Verdict:

The tribunal found that the Respondent, Peel Standard Condominium Corporation No 935, refused to provide requested records to the Applicant without a reasonable excuse. The Respondent was ordered to provide the outstanding records to the Applicant at no cost. Additionally, the Respondent was penalized with a $2500 penalty and was ordered to pay the Applicant $300 in costs.

Lesson: This case highlights the importance of condominium corporations complying with owners' rights to access records and the consequences they may face for non-compliance, including penalties and costs. It emphasizes the significance of proper record-keeping and timely provision of requested records to ensure transparency and accountability within condominium communities.

Takeaways:

Access to Records: The case highlights the importance of an owner's right to access records as stipulated in Section 55 of the Condominium Act 1998. The applicant alleged that the respondent failed to respond to and provide requested records in a timely manner.

Failure to Participate: The respondent did not participate in the tribunal's hearing, which can have consequences. In this case, the tribunal ordered a penalty against the respondent for refusing to provide records without reasonable excuse.

Record-keeping procedures: The case emphasizes the significance of proper record-keeping and maintenance by condominium corporations. The tribunal found that the respondent had failed to provide some of the requested records, indicating the need for organizations to have effective systems in place to respond to such requests.

Recommendations: 

Improve Communication and Timely Response: Condominium corporations should implement effective communication channels to ensure timely responses to requests for records. This can help avoid delays and potential penalties in the future. It is vital to acknowledge receipt of requests and promptly provide the requested information to owners.

Ensure Compliance with Record-Keeping Regulations: Condominium corporations should review and update their record-keeping procedures to ensure full compliance with the Condominium Act 1998. This includes maintaining all required records and providing them to owners upon request. Regular audits can be conducted to confirm that records are complete and up to date.

Train Board Members and Staff: Proper training should be provided to board members and staff regarding the access to records provisions of the Condominium Act 1998. They should be aware of their obligations and responsibilities in responding to requests for records. Training can focus on the importance of transparency, timely responses, and accurate documentation.

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