Board refuses to give list of unit owners

M.G. writes:

Dear Paul:

Our board refuses to give unit owners a list of all owners in our condo corporation. Some of us would like to know who our neighbours are, and who our partners are. Whenever we ask, they state that it is for confidentiality purposes. Our minutes usually contain many redactions rendering almost useless. We have challenges getting a copy of the budget. Can they refuse?

Paul replies:

Dear M.G.:

I am sorry to hear that your Board is acting in this fashion and have difficulty understanding their reasoning. A unit owner has a right to access all condo corporation records.

Condominium corporation must provide copies

132(1)      Upon request, a condominium corporation must, within a reasonable time, provide copies of its records to a unit owner, unit mortgagee, buyer or prospective buyer or an agent of any of them for examination. The corporation may charge a reasonable fee for labour and copying charges.

Note: The budget is definitely included in the list of records.

The name, address and telephone number are a matter of public record. Information regarding a specific unit, or unit owner however could be denied. If email addresses are collected to distribute information regarding the corporation, individual unit owners would have to give consent to disclose their email address since this is not a matter of public record.

I am not a lawyer; however, this is MY list of items that could be considered confidential and not publicly disclosed unless the corporation has obtained consent. (I am sure that this list is not exhaustive)

  • Letters of complaint from owner to the Board – and Board’s response;
  • Letters of complaint neighbour to neighbour – shared with the Board;
  • Responses to RFPs before contract is awarded; and possibly after if details could be prejudicial to bid participants;
  • Employee matters except for employee contract;
  • Details of a pending lawsuit against  the corporation; this usually on the advice of legal counsel and the insurance carrier;
  • Any health-related information about a specific unit owner; incidents of this nature should be rare;
  • Financial arrangements between a unit owner and a tenant (ex: if the owner leases property or uses as Airbnb);
  • Email address (unless the owner gives written permission to disclose);
  • Banking information;
  • When placing a lien on property; once the lien is filed with Land Titles it becomes a publicly accessible document;
  • Unit alterations IF it could identify an individual and disclose information that is irrelevant – ex: renovations required due to a disability as opposed to structural modifications that could affect the integrity of the property;
  • Any information to be disclosed for a purpose other than that for which it was originally collected, and corporation does not have written permission to disclose;

In the normal course of business, any matters considered confidential should be handled in an “in camera” meeting of the Board. Separate minutes of these sessions should be kept and stamped “confidential” or “classified”. At some point, this information may longer be sensitive and should be released. A notation on the document could read: “De-classified on [date]”. Hope this helps a bit!

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Paul T

    A reader added the following to this answer. The Act says:

    Board to notify unit owners — change in contributions to common expenses
    149(1) Within 14 days after the board approves a budget, a condominium corporation must give each unit owner
    (a) written notice of any change to the unit owner’s contribution to the common expenses; and
    (b) upon request, a copy of the approved budget.

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