While the Condominium Act, 1998 (the “Act”) grants the board of a condominium corporation considerable decision making authority, their power is not unlimited.
In Hogan v Metropolitan Toronto Condominium Corp. No. 595, a group of condominium owners (the “Owners”) attempted to requisition a meeting pursuant to section 46 of the Act, to hold a vote on proposed improvements to the common elements. On the requisition form, several Owners simply printed their name, instead of signing in cursive.
Section 46(1) of the Act requires that at least 15% of the units be represented on the requisition. Section 46(2) requires the requisition be in writing and “signed by the requisitionists.”
The board took the position that only the names signed in cursive were valid and could be counted towards the 15% requisition requirement. Based on this position, the board refused to hold a meeting of the Owners, citing insufficient unit owner support.
The Superior Court of Justice disagreed, stating the Act “should not be rigidly or narrowly construed.” There was no suggestion of fraud or the authenticity of the requisition form. The Court, satisfied that the intention of each Owner was conveyed by a printed name, found the form constituted a valid requisition under section 46.
Condominium boards should be wary of interpreting the Act rigidly. Refusing to requisition a meeting on a technicality will not be viewed favourably by the courts.
Special thanks to Alyssa Gebert for assisting with this article.