Important Changes to the Condo Act and Expansion of the CAT Happening in 2022
As many of our readers are aware, amendments to the Condominium Act, 1998 have been pending for quite some time. The provincial government has now announced that some of these changes – including changes to Section 117 of the Act (which deals with dangerous conditions or activities in the units or on the common elements) – will come into effect on January 1, 2022.
The amendments are aimed at addressing “nuisance”. In particular, the amendments will result in revisions to Section 117 of the Act that will prohibit a person from:
- causing, through an act or omission, conditions or activities in the condominium units, common elements or assets that are likely to damage the property or the assets or cause an injury or an illness to an individual;
- carrying on or permitting activities in the units, common elements or assets if the activity (ies) results in the creation or the continuation of (a) any unreasonable noise that is a nuisance, annoyance or disruption to an individual in a unit, the common elements or the assets or (b) any other prescribed nuisance, annoyance or disruption to an individual in a unit, the common elements or the assets.
The “prescribed” prohibited nuisances, annoyances and disruptions mentioned at subsection 117(2) will be listed under Section 26 of Regulation 48/01, and will include the following types of nuisances, annoyances and disruptions (if they are found to be unreasonable):
Expanding the CAT’s jurisdiction
In the addition to the above-mentioned legislative changes, the government will also amend Regulation 179/17 to expand the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT)’s jurisdiction to deal with “nuisance”. The expanded jurisdiction will include disputes related to the following:
- Nuisances, annoyances or disruptions as set out under subsection 117(2) of the Act and in Regulation 48/01; or
- Provisions in a condominium’s governing documents (i.e., the declaration, by-laws or rules) that:
- prohibit, restrict or otherwise govern, the activities described in Section 117(2) of Act or in Regulation 48/01, or any other type of nuisance, annoyance or disruption to an individual in a condominium corporation; and
- govern the indemnification of the condominium corporation and/or owners, etc. in reference to the above-mentioned disputes.
The amendments made to Regulation 179/17 (allowing for the expansion of the CAT’s jurisdiction) can be found here.
It is interesting to note that, while the CAT will now have jurisdiction over disputes related to “nuisances, annoyances or disruptions” (mentioned under subsection 117(2) of the Act), disputes concerning the “dangerous activities” listed under subsection 117(1) (i.e., “activities that are likely to damage the property or the assets or cause an injury or an illness to an individual”) will not be under the CAT’s purview. Litigants will therefore have to continue bringing these types of disputes before the Courts. [This is one of the matters that cannot fall within CAT’s jurisdiction, according to Section 1.36 (4) of the Act.]
Ultimately, the changes to the CAT’s jurisdiction are intended to make the system more accessible to members of the condominium community. We do, however, continue to have concerns in relation to the non-recovery of legal costs, which we have detailed in a previous blog.
Stay tuned to Condo Law News to keep up to date on the latest developments in condominium law!