Archive for the ‘COVID-19’ Category

Thursday, April 8th, 2021

April 8, 2021

TO:                 Ontario Landlord Association Stakeholders

FROM:           Karen Restoule, Associate Chair

RE:                 Expedited Enforcement of Eviction Orders

On April 8, 2021, the Government of Ontario issued Ontario Regulation 266/21 made under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.

This regulation states that the Court Enforcement Office (Sheriff) cannot enforce any Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) eviction order unless the order asks the Sheriff to expedite the enforcement.  The Sheriff can resume enforcing all eviction orders after the Government of Ontario removes the regulation.

The LTB is continuing to hold hearings for all types of applications and issue orders, including orders for evictions. This will help ensure that tenants and landlords seeking resolution from the LTB are provided access to justice with minimal service delays.

The purpose of this memo is to provide information on when an eviction order issued by the LTB may include a request to the Sheriff to expedite enforcement.

Section 84 of the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (“RTA”) says that the LTB must include such a request to the Sheriff in the order where the tenant is being evicted for certain types of very serious conduct, and the adjudicator has not delayed the enforcement date pursuant to section 83(1)(b) of the RTA. The grounds for eviction in section 84 are:

  • Willfully damaging the rental unit
  • Using the unit in a way which is inconsistent with residential use and caused, or is likely to cause, significant damage
  • Committing an illegal act in the unit involving the production or trafficking of illegal drugs
  • Seriously impairing someone’s safety
  • Substantially interfering with the landlord’s reasonable enjoyment – in cases where the landlord and tenant live in the same building and the building has three or fewer residential units

If a landlord believes that an eviction order should include a request to the Sheriff to expedite enforcement, but the application is not based on any of the grounds contained in section 84 of the RTA, the landlord may raise this issue during the hearing. The adjudicator may consider whether the tenant is responsible for an urgent problem such as a serious and ongoing health or safety issue at the residential complex or a serious illegal act that occurred at the residential complex. The tenant will have the opportunity to make submissions on this issue if they are at the hearing.

If the hearing for the landlord’s eviction application has already been completed but the order has not been issued, the landlord may contact the LTB to ask the adjudicator who held the hearing to consider adding to the order a request to the Sheriff to expedite enforcement of eviction. Landlords can submit a request to expedite enforcement of the eviction by fax, mail or email. The tenant will have an opportunity to make submissions on this issue.

Eviction orders that have already been issued can only be changed if the order contains a serious error or a clerical mistake. If a landlord believes that an order contains a serious error, the landlord may file a request to review the order. If the landlord believes that the order contains a clerical mistake, the landlord may file a request to amend the order. More information on this process is available on the Application and Hearing Process page of our website.

We remain committed to updating you about operational planning and we are appreciative of your patience and cooperation as we continue to adjust our operations in response to the ongoing pandemic.

If you have any questions, please contact us at LTB@ontario.ca.

Sincerely,

[Original signed by]              [Original signed by]

Karen Restoule                    Lynn Dicaire

Associate Chair                    Registrar

The Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) is working towards implementing Zoom’s videoconference platform to conduct proceedings

Sunday, March 7th, 2021

The Ontario Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) is working hard to improve the process for small landlords to have access to justice.

The Ontario Landlords Association has explained to the LTB that most of our thousands of members across Ontario are familiar with Zoom for online meetings and not MS products.

We explained that instead of using Microsoft (MS) products, changing over to Zoom would create a space that most small landlords will be familiar with and be more confident using.

March 5, 2021

TO: Ontario Landlords Association Stakeholders

FROM: Karen Restoule, Associate Chair, Lynn Dicaire, Registrar

RE: Zoom Demonstration

The Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) is working towards implementing Zoom’s videoconference platform to conduct proceedings.

Before implementation, we are engaging with stakeholders to obtain feedback to inform our plans to rollout the platform for all proceedings.

We are pleased to invite you to attend a Zoom demonstration session on one of the following days next week.

Please log into the session using the Zoom link provided next to each date.

Note that each session will be the same and you should only attend
one.

– Wednesday, March 10, 2021 from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Please log in using
this Zoom link: https://ca01web.zoom.us/j/64404762691

– Thursday, March 11, 2021 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Please log in using
this Zoom link: https://ca01web.zoom.us/j/67414728067

The LTB values your experience and perspective and we welcome your input on our proposed changes to our processes. We are making this transition to better meet the needs of those who access our services. As we move forward, we will provide more updates in the coming weeks.

We hope you will participate in this session.

Sincerely,

Karen Restoule                         Lynn Dicaire
Associate Chair                         Registrar

TENANTS CAN NOW GET A FREE LAWYER TO HELP YOU FIGHT YOUR LANDLORD!

Monday, March 1st, 2021

EVICTION HELP: THE TENANT-LAWYER CONNECTION PORTAL

There was an excellent story by CBC news explaining how Tenants can now get free legal help from an Ontario lawyer.

YES, FREE LEGAL HELP FROM AN ONTARIO LAWYER.

Unlike the venomous “work for the highest bidder” low-life legal reps that want to evict tenants, hurt families and destroy lives, there are lots of good lawyers out there.

They are successful already and don’t have to be “bottom-feeders” like what many landlords are hiring to try to destroy tenant lives. Tenants face so many scary challenges these days. It ranges from defamation and illegal tenants lists (direct link here)  to landlords not keeping the rental property safe from fires.

Good lawyers believe in justice and fairness and they can protect you from the low-class sharks that are used as weapons against Tenants during the current corrupt LTB Hearing system.

They aren’t desperate to make a “quick buck” abusing the system to please their landlord paymasters.

A Lawyer Is Like Your Bodyguard Against Landlord Bullies!

“DON’T BULLY MY CLIENT LANDLORD! OBEY THE LAW OR GET WRECKED!”

Having your own lawyer makes sure your landlords treat you with respect! If they think you are weak they will bully you, but if they know you are protected they will change their tune fast!

The Ontario Bar Association has launched a new pro bono legal service to help tenants at risk of losing their homes when residential evictions resume across the province in the coming weeks.

The enforcement of eviction orders was paused in Ontario when the provincial government introduced a stay-at-home order on Jan. 14 to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Evictions have since resumed across most of the province, though the moratorium will remain for Toronto, Peel Region and North Bay-Parry Sound until at least March 8.

Ontario’s Landlord and Tenant Board is expected to begin processing a growing backlog of cases as enforcement resumes more widely across the province.

“There will be a wave of hearings,” said Doug Ferguson, the bar association’s chair of pro bono work.

“And there will be a wave of evictions.”

The new service offers 30 minutes of free legal advice for tenants facing eviction hearings.

‘Tenants are stuck’

Ferguson said lawyers who volunteer for the program will walk clients through their tenant rights, and help them to negotiate agreements with landlords, such as deferring payments or delaying an eventual move-out date.

The goal, he said, is to better prepare tenants for hearings that have the potential to fundamentally disrupt their lives.

“The tenants are stuck,” Ferguson said. “When you don’t have the legal training or the information you need, it makes it very difficult to make your point.”

The bar association says it has enough volunteer lawyers to assist 100 clients per week. Some tenants in particularly complicated situations may receive more than the 30 minutes of free counsel, if the lawyer agrees to help them further.

The provincial government says it encourages tenants and landlords to reach “fair arrangements,” such as deferring rent or finding alternative payment arrangements.

Thousands of Toronto tenants facing evictions

Renters across Canada have reported difficulty making their rent throughout the pandemic, mainly due to job losses and increased economic instability.

A survey released in January by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation found that rent arrears increased nationally due to COVID-19, with 58.3 per cent of survey respondents reporting a higher rent arrears rate in 2020 than the previous year.

Toronto recorded the highest arrears rate, with 34,858 units, more than 10 per cent of the city’s rental stock, in arrears in 2020. The estimated amount of unpaid rent reached $55 million in Toronto last year.

Kiri Vadivelu is among the thousands of local tenants in arrears and now facing eviction. He hasn’t paid rent at his Scarborough apartment since April 2020 when he lost his job as a security guard.

“It is extremely, extremely frightening because if my landlord can evict me, I have no means to pay, and I have [nowhere] to go. What am I going to do?” said Vadivelu.

He and his wife are awaiting the birth of their first child this spring.

“I’m afraid our family is going to be homeless.”

Vadivelu is also an organizer with the tenant advocacy group Toronto ACORN, which has called on the provincial government to ban all residential evictions, hearings and orders until the pandemic ends.

The Ontario NDP has made similar demands.

Ferguson, of the bar association, did not echo those calls, though he did raise similar concerns about the possibility of tenants across the province being pushed out of their homes.

“At this point in the pandemic, to have thousands of people homeless cannot be good for our communities,” he said.

“Not good for public health and not good for our economy.”

Don’t Estimate The Depths Landlord Desperate Legal Reps Will Go!

“I will evict each and everyone of these tenants so I can finally make enough cash to buy my Ferrari and Miami beach luxury condo!”

Tenants know that landlords (including small landlords) are hiring expensive legal help to try to steamroll Tenants and kick us out of our homes.

Get Help Here.

With LTB hearings now online, many Tenants claim adjudicators (judges) at the Landlord and Tenant Board are stomping on our legal and human rights!

Make sure you get a free lawyer and make sure your landlord knows you have a lawyer helping you so they must RESPECT YOU!

Landlord And Tenant Board Speaks To Ontario Landlords Association Members

Monday, February 15th, 2021

February 16, 2021

TO:                Ontario Landlord Association Members

FROM:           Karen Restoule, Associate Chair

                        Lynn Dicaire, Registrar

 RE:                 Eviction Enforcement Resumes in 27 Ontario Regions

On February 16, 2021, the government announced that residential eviction enforcement will resume in 27 public health unit regions:

  • Niagara Region Public Health
  • Chatham-Kent Public Health
  • City of Hamilton Public Health Services
  • Durham Region Health Department
  • Halton Region Public Health
  • Middlesex-London Health Unit
  • Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services
  • Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit
  • Southwestern Public Health
  • Thunder Bay District Health Unit
  • Wellington-Dufferin Guelph Public Health
  • Windsor-Essex County Health Unit
  • Brant County Health Unit
  • Eastern Ontario Health Unit
  • Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit
  • Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit
  • Huron Perth Public Health
  • Lambton Public Health
  • Ottawa Public Health
  • Porcupine Health Unit
  • Public Health Sudbury and Districts
  • Algoma Public Health
  • Grey Bruce Health Unit
  • Northwestern Health Unit
  • Peterborough Public Health
  • Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit
  • Timiskaming Health Unit.

The Court Enforcement Office (Sheriff) may enforce all Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) eviction orders in these 27 regions and the previously announced three regions that are no longer subject to the Stay-at-Home order. To find out which public health unit your rental unit is located in, enter the postal code in the Ministry of Health’s Public Health Unit Locator.

In all other regions of the province, previously announced restrictions on enforcement of LTB evictions orders by the Sheriff remain in effect. In those regions, the Sheriff cannot enforce an LTB eviction order unless the order asks the Sheriff to expedite the enforcement. If you believe the LTB should request an expedited eviction, please raise the issue at your hearing.

The government may make further changes to the list of public health unit regions subject to these restrictions in the weeks to come.

The LTB continues to hold hearings for all types of applications and issue orders, including orders for evictions. This will help ensure that tenants and landlords seeking resolution from the LTB are provided access to justice with minimal service delays.

Please continue to refer to our website for operational updates. Thank you for your patience and cooperation.

Sincerely,

[original signed by]               [original signed by]

Karen Restoule                   Lynn Dicaire

Associate Chair                   Registrar

Landlord and Tenant Board Expanding Access to Technology for Proceedings

Monday, February 1st, 2021

January 27, 2021

TO:                  Ontario Landlord Association Stakeholders

FROM:            Karen Restoule, Associate Chair, Lynn Dicaire, Registrar,  LTB

RE:                  Landlord and Tenant Board Expanding Access

The Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) is continuing its efforts to improve operations and enhance the quality of dispute resolution for the thousands of people across the province who access its services.

Last year, we heard from you that some Ontarians have difficulty participating in their hearing by telephone or videoconference because of a lack of access to the necessary technology. This feedback has been important to helping us identify opportunities to improve parties’ experience with the board. In doing so, we have carefully assessed and evaluated the LTB’s ability to provide access to technology, while also ensuring the safety of LTB staff and participants.

Today, we are pleased to announce that starting February 1, the LTB is expanding options to address requests for alternative hearing formats for parties in Toronto who do not have access to a telephone, computer and/or the internet.

LTB parties who need access to a computer and telephone terminal may be accommodated at the 15 Grosvenor Hearing Centre in Toronto. Parties who have received a Notice of Hearing and have contacted the LTB to make their request will be considered for access to the terminal. The LTB will evaluate each request on a case-by-case basis and respond with its decision to grant or deny the request. If the request is granted, the party using the terminal will participate in their hearing electronically.

A room will be set up to include a computer and telephone to support the party’s participation. Staff will only be available to help applicants who require technical assistance with the computer and/or telephone. A party can bring two additional individuals into the hearing centre for the proceeding. If the party needs to bring additional individuals, they should ask the LTB before the hearing; such requests will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Tribunals Ontario is committed to safeguarding the health and well-being of staff, and participants, and has implemented safety protocols and enhanced cleaning at the 15 Grosvenor Hearing Centre. Everyone entering the hearing centre will be required to complete an on-site COVID-19 screening assessment before entry and must adhere to all safety measures inside the hearing centre. Individuals who are deemed inadmissible through the screening assessment will not be permitted entry. Front-line counter services remain closed until further notice.

Tribunals Ontario will evaluate this new pilot initiative and determine if and how it may be improved upon and expanded to other tribunals and hearing centres across the province.

We will continue to monitor COVID-19 developments and will update our practices and procedures based on advice from the Ministry of Health, Chief Medical Officer of Health, and public health officials.

The LTB remains committed to updating you with regard to operational planning and is appreciative of your patience and cooperation as we continue to adjust our operations in response to the ongoing pandemic.

Sincerely,

[Original signed by]         [Original signed by]

Karen Restoule

Associate Chair

Lynn Dicaire

Registrar