In a recent case titled Peel Standard Condominium Corporation No. 1028 v. Jakacki (2020) ONSC 3697, the Ontario Superior Court was tasked with deciding whether to grant a temporary injunction preventing the Respondent, a unit owner, from using the common areas of the Applicant condominium corporation except for ingress and egress.
The Corporation alleged that the owner had, on a number of occasions, engaged in disruptive and violent behavior on the common elements of the Corporation. Some of the allegations included assertions that the Respondent drove on the common elements while intoxicated, sold narcotics on the Corporation’s property, and engaged in physical altercations with other residents – all of which resulted in the Corporation seeking removal of the owner from the Corporation’s property.
Upon the owner’s return, the disruptive and violent conduct continued, including verbal abuse of the Corporation’s management staff and purposely damaging the Corporation’s property.
As a result of owner’s continued misconduct, the Corporation brought an application for an interim ex parte injunction.
The Court applied the test for granting an injunction from R.J.R. MacDonald v. Canada (Attorney General) (1994) if the Corporation could demonstrate:
- that there is a serious issue to be tried;
- that the Corporation will suffer irreparable harm if the injunction is not granted; and
- the balance of convenience favours in granting of the injunction.
The Court found that there was a serious issue to be tried, based largely on the fact that the owner did not deny many of the Corporation’s assertions. The Court cited Sections 119(1) and 17(3) of the Condominium Act, 1998, and emphasized the importance of condominium corporations enforcing the Declaration and Rules when breached, particularly in the case at hand, given the severity of the owner’s alleged misconduct.
Next, the Court concluded that the Corporation would suffer irreparable harm if the injunction was not granted, in light of the Respondent’s ongoing pattern of violent and damaging conduct to both condominium property and other residents.
Finally, the Court found that the balance of convenience was in favour of granting the injunction, on the basis that the owner’s behavior demonstrated a pattern of deliberate and disobedient misconduct, again noting that the owner did not challenge many of the Corporation’s assertions.
On these grounds, the injunction was granted.
This case serves as a reminder that condominium unit owners are bound by not only the Condominium Act, but also the provisions and rules set out in the condominium documentation. This ensures that the community at large and other owners and residents can be free from any owners that display disruptive and disorderly conduct impacting their neighbors. Most importantly, Corporations are obligated to uphold and enforce their condominium documents, even if that means restricting certain freedoms of disobedient unit owners.