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Change to the Condo Act: Are virtual meetings and electronic voting (finally) here to stay?

Ontario is introducing changes to the Condo Act to provide condo corporations more flexibility to implement virtual meetings and electronic voting.  These changes are being presented pursuant to Bill 91, named “Less Red Tape, Stronger Economy Act, 2023”.  

You can review the bill here.

Summary of changes

If passed, this legislation will:

  • enable condos to hold virtual or hybrid meetings;
  • facilitate how notices and other documents are sent to owners;
  • permanently replace the temporary provisions of the Condo Act, which permit virtual meetings and electronic voting until September 30, 2023.

This would be subject to a condo’s governing documents which could specify otherwise (so your by-laws providing for virtual meetings and electronic voting would still be valid).

Virtual meetings

If the Bill passes, meetings of directors or of owners may be held entirely by one or more telephonic or electronic means or may be held in a hybrid manner (with some in-person and others by electronic means).

The corporation’s by-laws may limit the manners by which these meetings may be held and may specify requirements that apply.

Board meetings

Virtual or hybrid directors’ meetings will be allowed but provided that all persons participating to the meeting are able to communicate with each other simultaneously and instantaneously. (So no meetings by emails.)

Also of interest, boards will no longer require the consent of all directors before being able to proceed virtually.

Owners meetings

Virtual or hybrid owners‘ meetings will be allowed provided that all persons entitled to participate to the meeting can reasonably participate.   There is no definition of what “reasonable participation” entails.

Electronic voting

If the Bill passes, owners will be able to vote electronically or in person (or by proxy).  Electronic voting will include electronic ballots or voting by phone, in addition to many more modern methods such as…. (I’m not making this up)… fax.

The corporation’s by-laws may limit the manners by which a vote may be conducted.

There will also be changes to record keeping of ballots.

Notifying owners by emails

If passed, condo corporations will be able to communicate and send notices to owners electronically – unless they have in place a by-law preventing it.

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