In the aftermath of the 2017 amendments to the Condominium Act, we are all likely well familiar with the updated notice requirements for meetings:
- A notice of meeting must be given at least 15 days prior to the date of the meeting of owners; and
- In addition, a preliminary notice must be given at least 20 days prior to the notice of meeting going out.
So, ultimately the preliminary notice must be given at least 35 days prior to the scheduled date for the meeting of owners.
However, complying with these notice requirements can be tricky when applying them to a turnover meeting, which is governed by section 43 of the Condominium Act. As our readers know, section 43 requires that a declarant-controlled board:
- Call a meeting of owners to turnover control of the condominium to the owners within 21 days from the date the declarant ceases to own the majority of units; and then
- Hold the meeting of owners within a further 21 days of calling the meeting.
In other words, the maximum time frame that a declarant controlled-board has to call and hold the turnover meeting is 42 days from the date on which it no longer owns the majority of units. But the trick is that it must also get the preliminary notice of meeting out 35 days in advance of the turnover meeting…which is a tight turnaround!
In our view, this is an unfortunate side-effect of the 2017 Condominium Act amendments. With that said, in our view, the updated notice requirements do apply to turnover meetings and declarant-controlled boards must do their best to comply with them.
The underlying purpose of the notice requirements is to ensure owner participation in meetings. And given the importance of turnover meetings, in our view, ensuring owner participation is more important than holding the meeting within the 42-day deadline.
Accordingly, if timing is an issue, the best course of action is for the declarant-controlled board to comply with the new notice deadlines, but to also schedule the turnover meeting as soon as reasonably possible after the declarant ceases to own the majority of units.
Stay tuned to Condo Law News to keep up to date on the latest developments!