By the Condo Brothers From Different Mothers Jason Rivait, BA (Hons), MA, LL.B. Miller Thomson LLP Joy Mathews, Partner, BPHE (Kin.), BA, MA, JD Rutherford & Mathews, PC Barristers & Solicitors
There’s a Form for That New Forms Will Result in Greater Transparency, Greater Communication and Ultimately More Cohesive and Educated Communities
The Ministry of Government and Consumer Services posted 15 forms in November 2017. These forms covered a wide range of areas including, among others: records requests, proxies, and information certificates. The first impressions of these forms were generally negative. The condo industry noticed a number of issues with the initial set of forms, including with the way they were rolled out. The forms were introduced just one day before they came into force, leaving no time for the industry to review or understand them.
Additionally, the forms were difficult to locate, access, and modify. The industry also complained about their length, convolutedness, and lack of availability in languages other than French and English. In May 2018, and after receiving industry feedback through blog posts, articles, and comments, the Ministry introduced another set of amended forms. This article will discuss some of these new forms. Proxy Forms The new but older proxy form (which was introduced in November 2017) was particularly difficult to use and understand, in part, because of its unusual layout, confusing options, overbreadth of uses, and unclear directions. The Good The new proxy form (which was introduced in May 2018) was amended to address some of those problems. The previous form only permitted the unit owner to select between authorizing the proxy
holder to vote on all matters, or only on procedural matters. The new form introduced a third option allowing the proxy to be used only for establishing quorum, rather than to vote. The new proxy form is more user friendly with clearer instructions and collapsible sections allowing corporations to tailor proxy forms to the relevant matters being considered. This new form is also less onerous, preserving the validity of the proxy even if certain boxes (depending on which ones) are not filled out. The Bad The new proxy form still has a number of shortcomings. For instance, the form is relatively long, difficult to access, and provided only in English or French. Additionally, the form requires the owner to initial every box that they tick. In York Regional Condominium Corporation No. 818 v. Michael Przysuski, the Superior Court of Justice held that a proxy (albeit in an older format) was invalid because it was missing an initial. This decision showCONDOVOICE FALL 2018
ILLUSTRATION BY CLAYTON HAMNER
In November 2017, the Province of Ontario introduced substantial amendments to the Condominium Act, 1998 (the “Act”) and a host of new regulations. These amendments mandated the use of certain forms and were ultimately intended to increase transparency of condo governance, and to encourage engagement by standardizing and facilitating communication between condo boards and unit owners.
CCi-T Condovoice - Fall 2018