On May 12, 2020, the provincial legislature approved (temporary) amendments to the Condominium Act, 1998 (the "Act") as part of Bill 190, the "COVID-19 Response and Reforms to Modernize Ontario Act, 2020".
Largely, these amendments to the Act mirror the earlier COVID-19 emergency order concerning condominium meetings and related issues. The emergency order, for example, provided time extensions for Annual General Meetings, allowed for 'virtual' condominium owners' meetings, permitted electronic service and implemented various other related measures.
An important (and new) part of Bill 190 is a definition of the transition period during which the new measures will continue to apply once the emergency is declared "over" by the Ontario government. Essentially, once the emergency ends, the new measures (e.g. virtual meetings) will extend for an additional 120 days, and might be extended further.
This is helpful, especially as one concern with the earlier emergency order was that if the emergency ended, any pending virtual meetings may not be able to proceed. The 120 day extension will ensure that such virtual meetings may proceed as planned.
It should be kept in mind, however, that the conditions and extensions of AGMs remain in place. As a reminder, the extensions for AGM operate as follows:
- Where the deadline to hold an AGM falls within the period of the declared emergency, the time to hold the meeting is extended to 90 days after the emergency is terminated.
- Where the deadline to hold an AGM falls within 30 days after the declared emergency is terminated, the time to hold the meeting is extended to 120 days after the emergency is terminated.
Finally, the Ontario government has also extended the emergency to June 2, 2020. This is welcome confirmation for the many condominiums with June 30 AGM deadlines that those deadlines are now officially extended by the Act.
Please look for future communications as we continue to update our client and industry contacts of significant developments related to the COVID-19 crisis and other condominium matters.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.