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How Common are Lawsuits in Condos

Tell me I’m being cavalier with this statement, but lawsuits are very common in Toronto condos.

The old adage, “If you want to make an omlet, you gotta break a few eggs” might lend a hand here in describing just why condos have lawsuits.

First and foremost, constructing a condominium isn’t easy.  From acquiring the land, to zoning, to design and development, pre-sales, construction, registration and turnover, and then working out the “kinks” in the building; there’s a lot that can go wrong, and when things go wrong, legal actions often result.

Secondly, the process of “turning over” the building from the developer to the residents/owners of the newly-formed condominium corporation is something that, respectfully, the resident/owners are rarely ever prepared for.  A board of directors, consisting of five people, likely most of whom who have never been in this position before, is now tasked with effectively running the building – a job previously done by a developer who has likely overseen these tasks dozens, if not hundreds of times before.

I remember reading the messages for a condo I had owned back in 2009 posted by the owners in a Facebook forum, and they were asking things like, “When are the security cameras going to be installed in the elevators?”  There weren’t going to be any, because the developer didn’t install them.  It was as simple as that.

The residents went nuts, and that would that I hate so much – the word should came up so many times, as the residents came up with a laundry list of items that “should” be addressed, or features that “should” be incorporated, when all the while the residents were the legal owners now, as the “turnover” had been completed, so it was no longer the responsiblity of the developer.

The residents refused to leave this alone, and I assumed litigation would ensue.  Frivolous litigation, but litigation nonetheless.  I believe the property manager, and perhaps the legal counsel retained by the condominium corporation, talked these red-faced residents out of it.

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