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Raymond v. Leeds Condominium Corporation No. 8 - 2022 ONCAT 73 - 2022-07-13

Corporation:

RLCC 8

Date:

2022-07-13

Under:

CAT Decisions - Decision
Compliance with Settlement Agreement

Summary:

In the case of Raymond v. Leeds Condominium Corporation No. 8 (2022 ONCAT 73), the applicant alleged that the respondent, Leeds Condominium Corporation No. 8, breached a confidentiality provision in a settlement agreement. The settlement agreement was related to a previous case before the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT). The applicant claimed that the respondent's communication to owners regarding the CAT case contained confidential information, constituting a breach of the settlement agreement. The CAT member found that the respondent's communication did not disclose the details or terms of the settlement agreement. However, the communication misstated the details of the previous CAT case and shared information from a confidential mediation stage, which was contrary to the Tribunal's rules. Therefore, the CAT concluded that there was no contravention of the settlement agreement, and the application was dismissed.

Verdict:

In the case of Raymond v. Leeds Condominium Corporation No. 8, it was determined that the respondent did not breach the confidentiality of a settlement agreement when communicating with condominium owners. The lesson here is that while sharing general information about a case may be acceptable, parties should be cautious about revealing confidential details of the settlement agreement, especially information derived from mediation, to maintain the integrity of the process.

Takeaways:

Confidentiality of Settlement Agreements: This case revolved around a settlement agreement between the parties, emphasizing the importance of maintaining confidentiality in such agreements. The settlement agreement explicitly prohibited sharing its details without mutual consent.

Misrepresentation of CAT Process: The respondent's communication to owners about the CAT case was found to misrepresent the CAT's process. It shared information from a confidential mediation stage and inaccurately characterized it as "rulings," potentially leading to a breach of confidentiality.

Consideration of Settlement Breach: The Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT) can make orders if it determines a party has contravened a settlement agreement. In this case, it was concluded that no such contravention had occurred, highlighting the significance of accurate assessments.

Applicant's Request for Fees: The applicant requested her Tribunal fees, which were declined as she was not successful in her application. This underscores the need for a valid claim to receive associated costs.

Encouragement for Dialogue: Despite dismissing the application, the CAT encouraged the parties to consider further discussions to address the concerns raised by the respondent's communication, promoting communication and dispute resolution between parties involved in condominium disputes.

Recommendations: 

Review and Clarify Confidentiality Provisions: Parties entering into settlement agreements should ensure that the confidentiality provisions are clear and unambiguous. It's important to specify what information must remain confidential and under what circumstances it can be disclosed, even to individuals within the organization.

Training and Awareness: Ensure that all individuals involved in the dispute resolution process, including board members, management, and other relevant parties, receive training on the importance of confidentiality and the specific terms of the settlement agreement. This can help prevent unintentional breaches.

Mediation Process Education: Given that breaches may occur during the mediation process, parties should be educated on the specific confidentiality rules and guidelines for each stage of the dispute resolution process, as set forth by the Tribunal. This can help maintain the integrity of the mediation and settlement process.

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