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Baljak v. Halton Condominium Corporation No. 371 - 2021 ONCAT 2 - 2021-01-13

Corporation:

BHCC 371

Date:

2021-01-13

Under:

CAT Decisions - Dismissal Order
Access to Records

Summary:

In the case of Baljak v. Halton Condominium Corporation No. 371, the Applicant requested access to Board meeting minutes held in August 2020. The Respondent, Halton Condominium Corporation No. 371, filed a motion to dismiss the case, arguing that the Applicant had sold their condominium unit and was no longer entitled to obtain records under the Condominium Act, 1998. The Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT) granted the motion, dismissing the case. CAT found that the Applicant's entitlement to access records ceased when they sold their condominium unit, in accordance with subsection 55(3) of the Act, which specifies that "an owner" is entitled to examine or obtain records, and this entitlement does not extend beyond the period of ownership.

Verdict:

In the case of Baljak v. Halton Condominium Corporation No. 371, the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT) ruled that an applicant's entitlement to access condominium records under the Condominium Act, 1998, ends when they sell their unit. This case emphasizes that the right to examine or obtain records is tied to the ownership status at the time of the request, and it does not extend beyond the point of unit ownership transfer. Therefore, individuals who have sold their condominium units may lose their standing to continue with related cases concerning access to records.

Takeaways:

The case of Baljak v. Halton Condominium Corporation No. 371 concerned an Applicant requesting access to Board meeting minutes. However, the Respondent filed a motion to dismiss the case because the Applicant had sold their condominium unit, arguing that they were no longer entitled to obtain records under the Condominium Act, 1998.

The Tribunal found that the Applicant's entitlement to access records ceased when they sold their unit, in accordance with subsection 55(3) of the Act. This section specifies that the right to examine or obtain records extends only to owners at the time of the request.

The Tribunal considered previous cases with similar circumstances and determined that when an applicant sells their unit during an active case, their status to continue the case is lost.

The Tribunal dismissed the case, granting the Respondent's motion, and no costs were issued in the order.

This case reinforces that under the Condominium Act, entitlement to access records is tied to ownership status, and it ends when the ownership of the unit is transferred or sold.

Recommendations: 

Timely Responses: Condominium corporations should make every effort to promptly respond to record requests from unit owners to avoid potential disputes. Clear communication and adherence to the statutory timelines for providing records can help prevent unnecessary conflicts.

Awareness of Ownership Status: Unit owners should be aware that their entitlement to access condominium records is tied to their ownership status at the time of the request. If they plan to sell their unit during an ongoing case, they should consider the potential impact on their ability to continue with the case and act accordingly.

Educate Stakeholders: Both condominium corporations and unit owners should educate themselves on the Condominium Act, 1998, and its regulations to ensure a mutual understanding of rights and responsibilities regarding access to records. This can contribute to smoother interactions and dispute resolution in the condominium community.

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