Some condominiums prohibit pets of any kind.
Others may prohibit the number, type or size of pets. All
condominiums have rules governing the keeping of pets which if
broken can lead to an order for the permanent removal of the pet
from the complex. If you have a pet make sure you understand
what the rules are.
Condominium corporations that have a good set
of rules and who apply them in a consistent and fair manner
should have little difficulty enforcing them against those few
owners who won't live up to the community's standards. In those
cases where, as a last resort, it becomes necessary to take
legal action condominiums can utilize s.49 of the Act which,
among other things, allows the corporation to apply to a Judge
for an order directing the nonconforming resident to comply with
The ability of condominiums to enforce their
rules received a tremendous boost from the Ontario Court of
Appeal when it rendered its decision on the case of York
Condominium Corp. No. 383 v. Dvorchik, (1997). This case
involved a highrise condominium that had a rule which prohibited
pets in the building which weighed more than 25 pounds. The
corporation had already successfully enforced this rule against
an owner in 1988, and were understandably upset when in a 1992,
decision another Judge refused to uphold it on the grounds that
it was unreasonable. On appeal the corporation was successful in
obtaining an order for the removal of the pet. What was so
significant about this case were the strong statements made by
the Court of Appeal in rendering their decision.
The Court of Appeal stated that, "...a
court should not substitute its own opinion about the propriety
of a rule enacted by a condominium board unless the rule is
clearly unreasonable or contrary to the legislative scheme. In
the absence of such unreasonableness, deference should be paid
to rules deemed appropriate by the board charged with
responsibility for balancing the private and communal interests
of the owners. "
Court went on to state that, "...The
threshold for overturning a board's rules reasonably made in the
interests of unit owners is a high one..."
Opinion above courtesy of Ronald S. Danks of
Simpson, Wigle Barristers and Solicitors)