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Durham Condominium Corporation No. 136 v. Crowther - 2023 ONCAT 159 - 2023-10-30

Corporation:

DCC 136

Date:

Mon Oct 30 2023 00:00:00 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)

Under:

CAT Decisions - Decision
Compliance with Governing Documents
Indemnification or Compensation
Pets and Animals

Summary:

In Durham Condominium Corporation No. 136 v. Crowther (2023 ONCAT 159), the Condominium Authority Tribunal, presided over by Dawn Wickett, issued a decision ordering the permanent removal of the respondents' dog from the condominium premises. The tribunal found the respondents in breach of the condominium rules related to pet weight restrictions. Despite evidence of Nico's weight exceeding the limit, the respondents provided inconsistent information. The tribunal deemed Nico a nuisance and ordered his removal, showing deference to the condominium's decision. The respondents were also directed to reimburse the applicant for the application fee, pre-CAT costs, and legal costs, totaling $4,180.

Verdict:

The condominium corporation (Durham Condominium Corporation No. 136) was successful in their application to permanently remove a dog from their premises. The respondent breached the condominium rules regarding pet weight restrictions, failure to register the pet, and not removing the dog after being deemed a nuisance by the board. The tribunal ordered the reimbursement of costs and expenses incurred by the condominium corporation, including the application filing fee and legal costs.

The lesson from this case is that condominium corporations have the authority to enforce their rules and regulations regarding pets, and owners must comply with weight restrictions, registration requirements, and any requests to remove a pet if it becomes a nuisance. Failure to comply can result in legal action and potential financial consequences for the non-compliant owner.

Takeaways:

Enforcement of Condominium Rules: The case highlights the importance of taking necessary steps to enforce the rules of the condominium, especially those relating to pets. Condominiums may face fines or other sanctions if they fail to enforce their rules properly.

Participation in Tribunal Proceedings: The tribunal may proceed with a default hearing if a respondent does not participate or join the case preceding Stage 3. It is advisable for parties to participate fully in the hearing and engage in the process to ensure that their interests are well-represented.

Costs and Reimbursements: The case shows that it is possible for condominium corporations to seek and receive reimbursements for the costs associated with enforcing their rules and regulations. The tribunal may order respondents to reimburse the corporation for fees paid to file the application, legal costs incurred at the hearing, and pre-CAT expenses.

Recommendations: 

Owners should comply with all rules and regulations regarding pets in a condominium, including weight restrictions and registration requirements. Failure to comply can result in legal action and financial consequences.

Condominium corporations should enforce their rules and regulations consistently and in a timely manner. Complaints should be addressed promptly, and owners who fail to comply with rules should be given warnings and clear instructions for bringing their units into compliance.

Tribunals should ensure that all parties participating in a hearing have the necessary technical skills and support to navigate the hearing process. Legal decisions should be based on the facts presented and the law, and should take into consideration any mitigating circumstances or extenuating factors.

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