Can owner sue condo board?

F.G. writes:

Dear Paul:

Can I, as a unit owner, sue my condo corporation if I believe that the board is not managing the affairs of the corporation properly?

Paul replies:

Dear F.G.:

The short answer is, Yes. But, as an owner do you want to sue the condo corporation? There may be some instances when it is justifiable. However, you need to take into consideration that you would be suing yourself. This could be an expensive proposition. First, you would have to hire your own lawyer. Any expenses incurred by the corporation to defend itself would be paid by the owners of the corporation. Since you are an owner, you end up paying part of the legal costs along with all the other owners. I will safely assume that this action would not win you any popularity contests.

When going to court there are no guarantees that you would win your case. If you did win a judge might recognize your claim and award in your favour. The judge may or may not agree that the condo corporation has to pay your legal costs. If your legal costs are to be paid by the corporation, you and your neighbours will be faced with a larger bill. Unless a corporation has acted beyond its scope of responsibilities, courts are usually reluctant to overturn a condo boards decisions.

If the situation is so terrible that you feel the need to act, you may want to start by calling a special meeting of owners to replace the board due to mismanagement and elect a new board. You could stand for election yourself.

Another alternative under the Act is to go through the mediation/arbitration process. This is less formal, less costly and when all parties agree, decisions can be binding.

Unless the value of a lawsuit is in the tens of thousands of dollars and you have a reasonable chance of success, I would only sue as a last result. Good Luck!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.