Off-site condo owners should be reachable


John Devellis HeadshotIt's up to off-site condominium owners to provide up-to-date contact information in case of emergencies and to receive compliance notices, says Toronto condo lawyer 

"There are two big problems with off-site owners," says De Vellis, a partner with Shibley Righton LLP. "One is that it's often difficult to get a quorum for an annual general meeting because the owners who don’t live in the building don't bother showing up."

The bigger problem, he tells, is when off-site owners don’t leave current contact information, it makes dealing with compliance issues very difficult.

"The corporation is supposed to keep owners apprised because if they don't and try to get compensation for legal costs later, the owner may argue they were not aware of the issue and could have dealt with it had they known."

Under the Condominium Act, for such things as condo owner meetings, owners must give consent to being contacted by email by the condo corporation. But compliance notices can be sent by email without formal consent from the owner, De Vellis explains.

"If you have someone's email address — even though it’s not technically authorized electronic communication for official Condominium Act notices — you can send the message from a compliance perspective," he says.

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