Condominium Act Reform: Proposed Amendments could Eliminate Insurance Deductible By-laws

TODAY is the deadline to turn in written submissions to the Standing Committee for consideration during their review of Bill 106 – the Protecting Condominium Owners Act.

Bill 106 recently passed on second reading, and is currently before the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs for review and further public engagement. Several issues are of particular concern to many of us working in the condominium industry. Notably, Bill 106 could prevent condominium corporations from relying on a by-law to extend the circumstances under which they can charge back an insurance deductible to a unit owner. Instead, the bill would require this type of practice to be included in a corporation’s declaration.

If passed, this amendment could pose a huge burden on corporations. Many corporations currently have insurance deductible by-laws (passed with consent from the majority of owners) to assign responsibility for an insurance deductible back to the negligent unit owner.

The requirement to provide for this practice in a declaration, rather than through a by-law, may prove impossible. The issue is that many corporations do not have a provision for this practice in their declaration, and getting the required consent to amend their declaration may be unfeasible.

If you are a condominium owner, board member, or property manager, you may also share this concern. If so, it is important to submit your written objection to the Standing Committee before tomorrow’s deadline.

The Eastern Ontario chapter of CCI has prepared proposed wording for a submission, and has posted it on their website here. The proposed wording is as follows:

Date: _________________________

We, the owners of (Name and Condo Corporation Number) or Member of the Condominium Community (Property Manager) (insert which best represents you), object to the proposed governance change made to Bill 106, Section 105 (4) related to Insurance Deductible By-law.  We respectfully urge that recommendations made in Legislative Brief, Recommendations for Amendments to Bill 106: Protecting Condominium Owners Act submitted October 22, 2015 by the Joint Legislative Committee for the Canadian Condominium Institute (CCI) and Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario (ACMO) be implemented as noted below:

Pages 3 & 4, Issue Sheet No. 3, Governance, Insurance Deductible By-law Retain section 105(3) as drafted in the current Act; Delete section 105(4) from the amended Act; and Additional Note: The Regulations should also make the owner liable under 105(2) for damage caused by an act or omission of the owner and his/her tenants, guests, invitees, licensees and agents.

Signature: _____________________

Written submissions are being accepted up to 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 29, 2015. They can be forwarded to the Committee’s Clerk for consideration at the following address:

Committee Clerk
Room 1405, Whitney Block
Queen’s Park
Toronto, Ontario M7A 1A2

Tel: (416) 325-2536
Fax: (416) 325-3505
Email: [email protected]

See Jim Davidson’s recent blog post about this concern for further information.

Our readers in the condominium industry are welcome to contact our Condominium Law group with any questions about the potential impact of this bill.