By George Hall
I’ve been told repeatedly that the key to a long-lasting marriage is communication. Just like a marriage, problems arise when owners in a strata are ignored by their partners i.e. the strata council. When communications are ignored, owners feel that there is a lack of transparency. They feel that their problems are not being addressed and the entire process becomes arduous.
But who wouldn’t be upset if their spouse continued to make purchases on their credit card but wouldn’t reply to their texts?
Fortunately, strata law and family law are very different. As an owner in a strata, you are granted rights to information and documents by the Strata Property Act. Not only do owners have the right to bylaws and meeting minutes, but they are also entitled to view all correspondence sent and received by their strata council. Further, owners and strata members may be entitled to legal opinions and invoices obtained by council with some exceptions (they can’t obtain these opinions if they are a party to the litigation or anticipated litigation).
But the real kicker, and something many people do not know is: when certain documents are requested, the strata council must answer the request council within 1-2 weeks depending on what documents are sought. Usually, owners are able to either confirm their sneaking suspicions through these types of requests or alleviate their fears seeing that their strata council is in the process of dealing with their prior correspondence.
Moral of the story, owners should be aware that they have rights to documents. There is no need to feel in the dark or worry that a strata council is acting without transparency if the proper steps are taken.
Click here to read the relevant sections of the Strata Property Act regarding Strata records and requesting access to them.
If you’re having issue with your Strata Council, we welcome inquires and would be happy to assist in hopefully repairing your relationship.