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Condo Owners not Entitled to the Email Addresses of Other Owners

Over the years, there has been much debate over whether condo owners have a right to access the email addresses of other owners. Just as we were last blogging on this, the Condo Authority Tribunal was hearing a case on this exact topic.

If there was any doubt, we now know: condo owners are not entitled to access (or get copies of) the email addresses of other owners.

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Factual Overview

In this recent CAT case, the owner of a unit in MTCC 989 and of a parking unit in MTCC 979 sought an electronic copy of the Record of Owners and Mortgagees of both corporations. The list was disclosed but without the email addresses of owners (even for those owners having consented to the receipt of electronic notifications from the corporation). The condo owner sought the assistance of the CAT to get these email addresses.

Owners are entitled to the list of owners

There is now no doubt that condo owners are entitled to access the list of owners (and mortgagees) of the corporation.  This list will include the address of service of other owners.  It is also clear that owners can agree to receive by email formal notifications from the corporation.  So the specific question in this case what whether the owner seeking the list of owners was entitled to the email address of those owners who opted into such electronic notifications. After all, those emails were how the corporation formally communicated with these owners.

What is included in the section 46.1 records?

The following must be included in the section 46.1 records:

  • the owners name;
  • the identification of their unit;
  • the owners addresses for service (this refers to a postal address in Ontario); and,
  • For those who opted to receive electronic notification, a statement of the method of electronic notification.

This last part is what sparked the debate.

What the section 46.1 record contains is the fact an owner has opted for electronic notification and the method of such notification (fax, email or other electronic method).  What the record does not contain however is the actual email address or fax number to be used.  Naturally, the corporation has this information recorded but it does not formally form part of the section 46.1 record.

Owners are not entitled to the list of email addresses

In any event, regardless of whether the email addresses are to appear or not in the Corporation’s section 46.1 record, owners are simply not entitled to access that information.

That is because section 55(4) of the Condo Act specifically sets out exclusions to an owner’s right to obtain certain corporate records. Subsection 55(4)(c) of the Act specifically excludes from disclosure records relating to specific units or owners from the review by other owners.

Moreover, and this is probably all that was required to adjudicate this case, section 55(4) of the Condo Act refers to section 13.11(2) of the Regulations, which specifically provides that owners are not entitled to examine or receive copies of the record of method of electronic communication chosen by owners having opted into electronic communications.

If there was any doubt, the question has now been put to rest by the CAT: owners do not have a right to access the owners email list.

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