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JRS Productions Inc. et al. v. Metropolitan Toronto Condominium Corporation No. 980 - 2022 ONCAT 93 - 2022-08-26

Corporation:

SPMTCC

Date:

2022-08-26

Under:

CAT Decisions - Decision
Parking and Storage
Reasonableness and/or Consistency of Governing Documents

Summary:

The case JRS Productions Inc et al v Metropolitan Toronto Condominium Corporation No 980 was heard before the Condominium Authority Tribunal in Ontario. The issue was a parking dispute about the assignment of parking spots at Metropolitan Toronto Condominium Corporation No 980. The applicants JRS Productions Inc and Joseph Sutherland sought an order that parking at MTCC 980 should be on a first-come, first-served basis, or in the alternative, they should have reserved access to the parking spots in front of their respective units. The case progressed into a claim that the respondent has acted outside of its authority in allocating parking spots as reserved to specific units and that the respondent has unreasonably enforced parking rules against them. The tribunal found that although section 21(1) of the Condominium Act permits the respondent to lease parking spots as part of the common elements, it has leased the parking spots without a by-law, which is a requirement of section 211. Therefore, the tribunal found that the leases of the parking spots in November 2021 are invalid. However, the tribunal did not find the respondent's enforcement of parking rules against the applicants to be unreasonable, harassing, or bad-faith.

Verdict:

Verdict:
In the case of JRS Productions Inc et al v Metropolitan Toronto Condominium Corporation No 980, the Condominium Authority Tribunal found that the respondent, MTCC 980, had leased parking spots without a by-law, which was a requirement under section 211 of the Condominium Act. As a result, the leases of the parking spots in November 2021 were deemed invalid. However, the tribunal did not find the respondent's enforcement of parking rules against the applicants to be unreasonable, harassing, or in bad faith. No order for compensation or legal costs was made.

Lesson learned:

Compliance with governing documents: It is essential for condominium corporations to comply with the Condominium Act and their governing documents. In this case, leasing parking spots without a required by-law rendered the leases invalid.

Takeaways:

It's important to comply with the Condominium Act and governing documents: In this case, the respondent leased parking spots without a by-law, which was a requirement of section 211. Therefore, any leases of parking spots were invalid. It's essential to follow the Condominium Act and governing documents, as failing to do so can result in legal issues.
Enforcing parking rules should be reasonable: While the tribunal found that the respondent did not act outside its authority in allocating parking spots, it also did not find the respondent's enforcement of parking rules against the applicants to be unreasonable, harassing, or in bad faith. It's essential to enforce parking rules while being reasonable and not to infringe on the rights of other residents.
Communication between residents and board is key: In this case, the applicants did not identify parking issues to the condominium manager or the board before contacting them about the removal of reserved parking signs above the parking spots in front of their unit. It's essential to communicate potential issues with the board or the manager early on to avoid misunderstandings or legal issues in the future.

Recommendations: 

Establish clear and consistent parking policies: Condominium corporations should have well-defined parking policies in place, which should be communicated to all owners and tenants. This can help avoid disputes and ensure fairness in parking allocation.
Ensure proper documentation: Before leasing or allocating parking spots, condominium corporations should follow the necessary legal requirements, such as creating and registering the required by-laws. Proper documentation is crucial to avoid legal issues and challenges later on.
Open lines of communication: Maintaining open lines of communication between the condominium corporation, the board, and residents is essential. Residents should bring any concerns or issues regarding parking to the attention of the board or property manager at an early stage to facilitate prompt resolution and prevent misunderstandings. This can be done through regular communication channels, such as meetings or email correspondence.

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