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Persaud v. Peel Condominium Corporation No. 449 - 2023 ONCAT 70 - 2023-05-19

Corporation:

PPCC 449

Date:

2023-05-19

Under:

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

Summary:

It involves a dispute between the applicant, and Peel Condominium Corporation No. 449 (PCC 449), the respondent. The applicant alleges that PCC 449 has refused to provide the core records requested in her July 18, 2022 Request for Records without reasonable excuse. She asks the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT) to order the provision of records, as well as a penalty and reimbursement of costs. PCC 449 does not dispute that an owner is entitled to receive copies of the requested core records but claims they had reason to doubt the authenticity of the request. The case was heard through a written online hearing from March 14, 2023, to May 15, 2023. The decision, dated May 19, 2023, was made by Member of the Condominium Authority Tribunal. The decision addresses issues related to access to records, entitlement to records, fees, costs, and penalties under the Condominium Act.

Verdict:

The tribunal found that the condominium corporation, Peel Condominium Corporation No 449, refused to provide the applicant with copies of the board meeting minutes without reasonable excuse. As a result, the corporation was ordered to provide the requested records, pay a penalty of $1000, and reimburse the applicant $200 for tribunal filing fees. This case highlights the importance of timely and reasonable compliance with requests for records and the potential consequences for failing to do so. It also emphasizes the need for valid authorization and representation in legal proceedings to ensure smooth resolution of disputes.


Takeaways:

here are three takeaways from the case of Persaud v Peel Condominium Corporation No 449:

Reasonable Excuse: The condominium corporation (PCC 449) was ordered to provide the applicant with copies of the minutes of its board meetings for the specified period. The tribunal found that the corporation had refused to provide the records without reasonable excuse.

Penalty and Reimbursement: PCC 449 was ordered to pay a penalty of $1000 for its failure to provide the records and to reimburse the applicant $200 for the tribunal filing fees she paid.

Authorization and Representation: The issue of authorization for the applicant's representative was raised, but the tribunal accepted that the representative was authorized to act on behalf of the applicant at the tribunal. This implies the importance of ensuring proper authorization and representation in legal proceedings.

Recommendations: 

Clarify the process for requesting and providing records: It is important for condominium corporations to have a clear and transparent process in place for owners or authorized agents to request records and for the corporation to provide those records. This should include specific guidelines on the required documentation for authorization and the timeline for providing the requested records. By having a clear process in place, it can help prevent misunderstandings and delays in the provision of records.

Improve communication and collaboration between owners and condominium corporations: In this case, there was a history of friction between Dawn Persaud (Norma Persaud's representative) and PCC 449, which likely contributed to the issues in accessing records. It is recommended that both parties make efforts to improve communication and work collaboratively to resolve any disputes or underlying issues. This can help create a more harmonious living environment and facilitate the smooth provision of requested records.

Provide training on access to records and related obligations: Condominium corporations should ensure that their board members and staff are knowledgeable about the legal requirements and obligations related to access to records under the Condominium Act 1998. Training programs can be implemented to educate board members and staff on their responsibilities, the process for responding to requests, and the importance of providing records in a timely and efficient manner. This can help improve compliance and minimize the chances of disputes arising from access to records requests.


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