- Easy-to-use information available 24/7 in English and French on our website to help all members of the condominium community understand their general rights and responsibilities.
- Accessible on-line resources, tools, forms and guided steps to resolve common issues collaboratively before they escalate into disputes
- Easy-to-navigate condominium returns and notice of change systems that allow corporations to file and update key information.
- Easily accessible and cost- effective online dispute resolution service through the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT) – Canada’s first fully online tribunal.
- Online, mandatory training for condominium directors to help them understand their oversight and legal obligations.
- Publicly available and searchable Registry containing information on every condominium corporation in Ontario.
These services are enriched through the support of the CAO’s highly skilled Information Services (IS) Team who respond to inquiries and provide information and guidance on many complex issues by email and by phone, in English and French. In addition, the CAO works to continuously improve its services through the use of data to identify service enhancements and better meet the needs of condominium communities.
The CAO’s operations are primarily funded by the annual assessment fees paid by condominium owners and collected from condominium corporations in Ontario. These fees are determined by the number of voting units that each condominium corporation reports in their annual condominium returns. All condominium corporations are required to pay annual assessment fees to the CAO. Assessment fees are calculated based on the equivalent of $1 per voting unit per month. According to section 1.30 (5) of the Condominium Act, 1998, the total assessment fee for each condominium corporation is to be added to the common expenses. Accordingly, individual condominium owners are to be charged based on the percentage that they contribute to the common expenses as set out in the condominium corporation’s declaration.
This fee will support the CAO in providing:
- information and self-help resources about condominium living
- mandatory online training for condominium directors
- tools and guides for resolving common condominium issues
- access to the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT), a new online dispute resolution forum with exclusive jurisdiction to handle certain condominium-related disputes
- a public registry containing information on all condominium corporations in Ontario, for increased transparency
Condominium Authority Tribunal Fees
The CAO administers the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT), an online tribunal dedicated to helping resolve certain types of condominium-related disputes conveniently, quickly, and affordably.
To access the CAT’s dispute resolution services, the person filing the application (the “Applicant”) must pay an initial fee to file their application, and a separate fee for each stage of the CAT process (i.e., Stage 2 – Mediation and/ or Stage 3 – Tribunal Decision). This ensures that Applicants only pay for the services they require.
If there are multiple Applicants, the primary Applicant (most often the individual who started the filing process) must pay all CAT fees.
Here is an overview of the CAT’s fees:
- Filing fee ($25)
Applicants pay this fee to submit their application to the CAT. If the Application is accepted by the CAT and the Respondent joins the case, the case will begin Stage 1 – Negotiation.
At any time during Stage 1 – Negotiation, the Applicant can move their case forward to Stage 2 – Mediation by paying the Mediation Fee.
Note: If a Respondent fails to join a case, the CAT will permit the Applicant to pay the adjudication fee and move their case directly to Stage 3 – Tribunal Decision.
- Stage 2 – Mediation Fee ($50)
In Stage 2 – Mediation, a CAT Mediator will join the case and work with the Parties to try to resolve the dispute collaboratively.
If the Parties are unable to resolve the issues in Stage 2 – Mediation, the Applicant can move their case forward to Stage 3 – Tribunal Decision by paying the Adjudication Fee.
- Stage 3 – Tribunal Decision Fee ($125)
In Stage 3 – Tribunal Decision, a CAT Member will hold an online hearing and issue a binding order that resolves the dispute.
Note: Applicants filing disputes about Compliance with Settlement Agreements only pay the adjudication fee when filing, as these cases start in Stage 3 – Tribunal Decision.
The total costs of using the CAT will depend on when the case is resolved:
- If a dispute is resolved early in Stage 1 – Negotiation, the total fee is only $25;
- If a dispute is resolved with the assistance of a Mediator in Stage 2, the total fee is $75; and,
- If the dispute is resolved in Stage 3, the total fee is $200.
Recovering CAT Fees
CAT fees can only be recovered from another Party as part of an agreement entered into by the Parties, or as part of an order issued by a CAT Member.
Under the CAT’s Rules of Practice, if a case is not resolved by Settlement Agreement or Consent Order and a CAT Member makes a final decision to resolve the dispute, the unsuccessful Party will typically be required to reimburse the successful Party for their CAT fees, unless the CAT Member decides otherwise.
While the CAT generally will not order one party to reimburse another party for legal fees or costs, the CAT may order a party to reimburse another party for all or part of their costs, including costs directly related to behavior that was unreasonable, for an improper purpose, or that caused a delay or additional expense.
Note: The CAT has issued a Practice Direction to provide additional clarity on the criteria the CAT Might consider when deciding whether to order costs, and, if so, the amount of costs to be ordered.
Click here to access the CAT Practice Direction: Approach to Ordering Costs.
CAT fees are not refundable.