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» StrataBlog» Civil Resolution Tribunal and Strata Corporations
November 10, 2016

Civil Resolution Tribunal and Strata Corporations

The Civil Resolution Tribunal Act is now law in this Province.

The Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) is now up and running and provides a process to address strata disputes including disputes a strata council might have with a strata lot owner, or that a strata lot owner might have with the strata corporation or with another strata lot owner. Subject to restriction on authority, it replaces the Supreme Court for most disputes and Small Claims Court for debt collection. It helps resolve disputes on a timely basis, offers a range of dispute options, is accessible anytime from anywhere, affordable and efficient.

The CRT process:

  1. encourages agreement and settlement by      working with a case manager;
  2. is not mediation;
  3. uses electronic tools

The Tribunal issues a final decision if the parties cannot come to an agreement.

How the CRT Works is described in a document by this name found on the website https://www.civilresolutionbc.ca prepared by the Tribunal for this purpose.

 

Amendments to the Strata Property Act have been made that provide for the new process.

Strata corporation initiating tribunal proceeding

189.1  (1) Subject to subsection (2), a strata corporation, owner or tenant may make a request under section 4 of the Civil Resolution Tribunal Act asking the civil resolution tribunal to resolve a dispute concerning any strata property matter over which the civil resolution tribunal has jurisdiction.

(2) An owner or tenant may not make a request referred to in subsection (1) unless

(a) the owner or tenant requested a council hearing under section 34.1, or

(b) the civil resolution tribunal, on request by the strata corporation, owner or tenant, directs that the requirements of paragraph (a) of this subsection do not apply

 

Given the requirement for a council hearing under Section 34.1 of the Strata Property Act before the CRT will accept a request from an applicant, strata councils can expect an increase in the number of council hearings requested and should plan for how they will meet this requirement. Hearings requested under Section 34.1 must be heard within 4 weeks after the request and if the purpose of the hearing is to week a decision, the decision must be communicated in writing within one week following the council hearing.

 

Representation:

  1. The general rule is that parties are to represent themselves
  2. The strata corporation is represented through an authorized member of the strata council;
  3. A party with insurance coverage may be represented by a lawyer or other individual, subject to certain conditions;
  4. The strata corporation’s representative must have authority to bind the strata corporation.

It is important to note that the CRT Rules do not allow a strata manager to be the contract for the strata corporation in the dispute. The contact must be a strata council member.

 

C & C PROPERTY GROUP LTD. encourages councils to visit the Civil Resolution Tribunal Website to become familiar with how the process works.

 

 

 

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