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Roumy v. York Condominium Corporation No. 50 - 2022 ONCAT 109 - 2022-10-12

Corporation:

RYCC 50

Date:

2022-10-12

Under:

CAT Decisions - Decision
Fees, Costs, Penalties

Summary:

This is a condo-related dispute between the Applicant and the Respondent, York Condominium Corporation No. 50 (YCC50). The applicant requested electronic copies of board meeting minutes from YCC50, but they failed to provide all the required information within 30 days as required by the Condominium Act 1988. YCC50 provided the records later, but demanded a fee of $960.50, which the applicant paid. Later, the applicant asked for a CAT application (condominium authority tribunal) to be filed for the return of fees, and for a few other requests to be made against YCC50. The issues considered were the reimbursement of the requested fee, the potential penalty, and whether the records fee requested was reasonable. The tribunal ultimately ruled in favor of the applicant. stating that YCC50 waived its right to a fee by not following the mandated process. The decision ordered that YCC50 reimburse the applicant the records fee and the cost of her money order.

Verdict:

Verdict: The tribunal ordered York Condominium Corporation No. 50 to reimburse the applicant $960.50 in fees related to her request for records.

Lesson: It is important for condominium corporations to follow the prescribed process, including requesting fees upfront, when providing records to owners. Failure to do so may result in the corporation waiving its right to charge a fee.

Takeaways:

Failure to follow the mandated process: The Respondent, York Condominium Corporation No. 50, did not follow the prescribed process for requesting fees before providing records to the Applicant as required by the Condominium Act 1988. This resulted in the Respondent waiving its right to charge a fee.

Reimbursement of fees: The tribunal ruled in favor of the applicant, ordering the Respondent to reimburse her the fees she paid, totaling $960.50, for the records requested. The tribunal found that the failure to request the fee upfront disentitled the Respondent from pursuing the fee subsequently.

Redaction of in-camera minutes: The Respondent provided the records to the applicant, including redacted in-camera minutes, which were still in draft form. The tribunal did not make an order on this issue, stating that it was explained below, indicating that the extent of redaction was considered but not addressed further.

Recommendations: 

Follow prescribed process: Condominium corporations should ensure they follow the prescribed process for requesting fees before providing records to owners. It is important to request the fee upfront and include it in the Board's Response to Request for Records form to avoid disputes and potential waivers of the right to charge a fee.

Clearly communicate fees: Condominium corporations should clearly communicate any fees associated with accessing records to owners. The information regarding fees should be provided in a timely manner, preferably before providing the records, to avoid confusion and potential disputes.

Review and update policies: Condominium corporations should regularly review and update their policies related to access to minutes of in-camera and/or special meetings, debt collection, and the exercise of those policies. This ensures that the policies align with the requirements of the Condominium Act 1988 and fair practices, providing clarity for both the corporation and owners.

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