top of page
White Columns
< Back

Teno v. Essex Condominium Corporation No. 28 - 2022 ONCAT 43 - 2022-05-02

Corporation:

TECC 28

Date:

2022-05-02

Under:

CAT Decisions - Decision
Pets and Animals
Reasonableness and/or Consistency of Governing Documents

Summary:

A condominium corporation in Ontario, Canada, enforced a "No Pets Provision" in its declaration by enacting a new rule (Rule 27) to phase out the practice of allowing cats in its units. The new rule gave current owners of cats permission to keep their pets for the duration of their lives but did not allow any replacements. A unit owner challenged the rule on the grounds that it was unreasonable and invalid. However, the Condominium Authority Tribunal ruled in favor of the corporation on the basis that the rule was a reasonable attempt to bring the corporation into compliance with its declaration while balancing the rights of current cat owners.

Verdict:

the decision in the case of Teno v Essex Condominium Corporation No 28 is that the provisions of Rule 27, which relates to legacy cats, are valid and enforceable. The rule balances the rights of current cat owners with the need to enforce the "No Pets Provision" in the condominium's declaration. The applicant's request to declare Rule 27 invalid and enforce the declaration immediately was dismissed.

Takeaways:

No Pets Provision: The condominium corporation had a "No Pets Provision" in its declaration, which prohibited pets or animals on the premises. However, the corporation inconsistently enforced this provision, allowing cats to live in units for over 30 years.

Rule 27: To address the non-compliance issue, the corporation enacted Rule 27, which phased out the practice of allowing cats in units. The rule permitted current cat owners to keep their pets for the duration of their lives but did not allow replacements.

Validity of Rule 27: The applicant, a unit owner, challenged the validity of Rule 27, arguing that it was unreasonable and conflicted with the declaration. However, the tribunal concluded that Rule 27 was a reasonable attempt to bring the corporation into compliance with its declaration while considering the rights of current cat owners.

Recommendations: 

Consistent Enforcement: Condominium corporations should enforce their governing documents consistently to avoid confusion and disputes. In this case, ECC28's inconsistent enforcement of the "No Pets Provision" for over 30 years caused confusion for unit owners.

Reasonable Solutions: When confronting a non-compliance issue, condominium corporations should work towards reasonable solutions while taking into account the rights of current owners. Rule 27 was considered a reasonable attempt by ECC28 to bring itself into compliance with its declaration.

Transparent Procedures: Condominium corporations should have transparent and well-documented procedures for enacting rules and guidelines. While the applicant raised concerns about the procedure used to enact Rule 27, the tribunal concluded that there were no procedural errors in the approval and cited evidence of the corporation seeking legal advice. However, the tribunal also noted some procedural irregularities initially and emphasized the importance of following proper procedures.

bottom of page