There is continuing intense activity in condominium development in Toronto, the Greater Toronto Area, Hamilton and the Niagara region. Once a condominium corporation is formed by registration of a declaration, it has a lot to do and review, within specific time lines. Getting the essential work done within those specific time lines is crucial to the protection of the rights and remedies of developers, condominium corporations and unit owners.
Warranty review time lines occur at one-year, two-year and seven-year marks. If a one-year warranty claim is made, a 120-day period follows for repair or resolution by the builder. If there is no resolution and repairs are incomplete, the condominium corporation has 30 days to request conciliation or assistance with resolution of outstanding issues from the warranty provider. The conciliation process typically involves inspection by a warranty services representative who then renders a decision as to whether the claims are covered under the warranty. The corporation also has a right of appeal of an adverse decision to the License Appeal Tribunal (LAT).
The two-year mark is for water penetration and defects. The seven-year mark is for major structural defects.
The condominium corporation is also required to conduct a performance audit, prepared by an architect or engineer, between six and eleven months after registration of the declaration.
The condominium corporation also has the right to commence a civil action for any unresolved or unwarranted issues. The condominium corporation must exercise that right within two years of discovery of the issues or within two years of discoverability of the issues. Discoverability means when the issues should have been discovered by reasonable inspection of the condition of the property, including equipment and mechanical systems. Reasonable inspection usually also means by experts qualified to conduct the inspections such as mechanical engineers.
In addition to these important dates, the condominium corporation has the right to cancel condominium management agreements which were entered into before the owners elected a new board at the turn-over meeting. In such circumstances, the newly elected board has the right to terminate such an agreement by resolution of the board on 60 days’ notice.
Other agreements may be terminated by resolution of the board within 12 months following the turn-over meeting. These other agreements include contracts for the supply of goods, services and facilities with respect to the common elements for business purposes entered into by the corporation before the turn-over meeting on 60 days’ notice.
Fatima Vieira has appeared at all levels of Ontario courts in broad areas of litigation including condominium disputes, construction defect claims, insurance coverage applications, occupiers’ liability, personal injury and product liability claims. Fatima has also appeared at tribunals including the Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeal Tribunal (WSIAT) and the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT). Fatima has also represented clients at mediations and private arbitrations. Her approach to advocacy is to formulate strategies and solutions to achieve the client’s objectives including ADR. Fatima has achieved positive results for clients in court and at tribunals as well as in out of court agreements.