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How many motorcycles can be parked in a condo parking?

In a recent case, the Condo Authority Tribunal had to rule on whether a condo owner could “triple park” three motorcycles in his parking spot. An interesting case with a little bumpy ride.

Facts

The facts are quite simple.  The owner triple parked three motorcycles in his parking spot. Two letters were sent from management reminding him that he could only park one vehicle per parking spots and asking him to remove the other two. When he did not comply, the matter was escalated to legal counsel.

The owner refused to comply and the corporation commenced a CAT application. Of interest, despite being made aware of the CAT case and despite having stated that he would join the case “right away”, the owner opted not to participate in the CAT case.

Governing documents

The corporation’s declaration expressly provided that:

Each Parking Unit shall be used and occupied only for the parking of one (1) Motor Vehicle.

The expression “Motor vehicle” was defined to include automobiles, pick-up trucks, vans and motorcycles.

Decision

The CAT concluded that this owner contravene the parking restrictions found in the declaration and was ordered to immediately cease parking more than one motor vehicle in his parking spots. As he had a total of 3 spots, an interesting discussion took place on whether the CAT should extend its order to the other spots even though the owner had only breached the rules for this one parking spot. In light of this owner’s history of lack of cooperation, the CAT extended the order to all of his parking spots to avoid having to start the process again if he was simply to move the motorcycles to other spots of his.

The owner was also ordered to pay $2,150 in fees and costs (out of the $3,243 that the corporation was seeking).

Takeaways

This case was a pretty straight forward one but it may not always be the case.  Corporations should consider the following when faced with a similar situation:

  • You should consider whether the parking units are deeded units or common element parking spots.
  • You should consider the precise language of your governing documents. Parking restrictions would usually be found either in the declaration or in the rules.
  • If the restriction is found in the rules, the CAT may be asked to turn its mind to whether your parking restrictions are reasonable.

The CAT seems to be getting comfortable riding its jurisdiction over parking disputes.

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