The registration desk is manned by the management company and I can't
think of a bigger conflict of interest than having a contractor who
relies on the board of directors for their employment being given
possession of the proxies and determining whether an owner has the
right to vote or not.
At most condos there no evidence of election fraud but certain condos
election fraud is as likely as winter snow.
An incident in
In 2012, there was a well-known case
at a Mississauaga condominium where the property
management company denied twelve proxies the right to vote at an owners
meeting—called to remove four directors—on the pretense that the owners
were in arrears for over 30 days.
These 12 proxies were crucial as the four directors would not have been
removed if the owners were indeed in arrears and not eligible to vote.
The chair was replaced by the meeting and the new chair determined that
the twelve proxies should be included in the vote because the records
presented to her by the management company appeared inaccurate.
Her decision was confirmed by the courts.
At a requisition meeting at a townhouse complex in Brampton, many owners
were denied the right to vote because management said they were in
arrears. Some actually were but others made the error of writing out
their special assessment cheques out to the management company instead
of the corporation, others dropped off their cheques at the management
company's office but failed to ask for a receipt and others were
prepared to pay their arrears at the registration desk but management
refused to accept personal cheques or cash and would accept only money
orders or certified cheques.
Unsurprisingly, the attempt to remove the directors failed.
A second attempt
A half-dozen activists were better prepared for the elections at the
AGM. When they went door-to-door collecting proxies, they got
photocopies of the owners receipts or bank statements proving that they
paid their fees.
However, they recieved a shock when the manager at the requisition desk
rejected all 70+ proxies as he claimed they were all in arrears.
owners denied voting rights
By Tony Gioventu—columnist
03 September 2014
Our strata corporation had a special meeting a few weeks ago
to vote in a new set of bylaws. The changes now permit rentals and
dogs. This has been a significant change in the 25 years of our strata.
We have found out after the meeting that 12 people were not permitted
to vote because of claims they owed money. However, after the meeting a
group of owners got together and discovered these 12 owners were
opposed to the bylaw changes, and that they were never given any notice
of any claims for money owing.
While we are in favour of the bylaws, we
are not in favour of our strata corporation potentially violating the
act by denying voting rights.
The bylaw amendment only passed by two
The property manager said it was her discretion at the meeting
to determine voting eligibility. Why would a hired employee have
authority to determine whether we the owners are eligible to vote or
Dear Clarence: The Strata Property Act determines the conditions for
eligible voters, and the by-laws of your strata corporation must set
The Act determines that if a strata corporation has
a by-law that relates to eligible voting, an owner may not be an
eligible voter for matters that relate to a majority or three-quarters
vote if the following applies.
First, the strata corporation requires a
by-law that determines a person is not an eligible voter if the strata
is entitled to file a lien against that strata lot.
Second, in order to
be entitled to file a lien the strata corporation has to issue a
written demand notice providing the strata lot owner with 14 days
notice of the demand and claims allowing the person to be able to
respond, remedy the claim and charges or challenge those charges. The
claim may only be those types of secured debts that the Act permits.
These are strata fees, special levies, a rate of interest approved in
the by-laws or a resolution that does not exceed 10% per annum, the
for repairs related to an order issued by an authority, or share of a
judgment against a strata corporation, and the cost of filing or
removing the lien and the applied administrative costs which are
generally the legal and land title costs for filing the lien.
fines, damages or insurance deductibles are claims that are not
lienable and cannot be used to prevent a person from voting at general
No one, including the property manager, has random authority
to determine eligible voters. A person unlawfully denied their voting
rights has a credible claim against the strata corporation. If this is
the case your strata council should consult with your lawyer to
determine how to best remedy the error.
Tony Gioventu, Executive Director
Condominium Home Owners’