Resolving strata disputes
Strata corporations, strata owners, and tenants can access online services through the BC Civil Resolution Tribunal's (CRT) to help solve disputes such as:
- non-payment of monthly strata fees or fines
- unfair actions by the strata corporation or by those owning more than half of the strata lots in a complex
- uneven, arbitrary or non-enforcement of strata bylaws (such as smoking, noise, pets, parking, rentals)
- issues of financial responsibility for repairs and the choice of bids for services
- irregularities in the conduct of meetings, voting, minutes or other matters
- interpretation of the legislation, regulations or bylaws
- issues regarding common property
The tribunal also helps solve small claims disputes of less than $10,000.
How are tribunal services accessed?
Tribunal services are available online 24/7. Assistance is also offered by phone, mail or even in person. Disputes are expected to be resolved within 60 days, compared to 12 to 18 months for the court process.
Stage 1: Self-help
Information and tools will be available online 24/7 to help parties resolve disputes.
Stage 2: Online party-to-party negotiations
If Stage 1 fails, parties can go through a guided negotiation monitored by tribunal staff.
Stage 3: Facilitated settlement
Where an agreement is still not reached, parties can pay applicable fees and request active facilitation by the tribunal involving mediation or other dispute resolution processes. All parties must consent.
Stage 4: Case management preparation
A case manager will facilitate mediation and explore options for settlement.
Stage 5: Adjudication
Any dispute not settled by agreement will be heard by an adjudicator with the authority to decide the outcome and make binding decisions.
Fees for tribunal resolution of a dispute have not been finalized.
The tribunal does not decide matters that affect land, including:
- ordering the sale of a strata lot;
- court orders respecting rebuilding damaged real property;
- dealing with developers and phased strata plans; or
- determining each owner’s per cent share in the strata complex (the “Schedule of Unit Entitlement”).
These matters will continue to be heard in the BC Supreme Court, as will other matters, including:
- the appointment of an administrator to run the strata corporation
- orders vesting authority in a liquidator
- applications to wind up a strata corporation
- allegations of conflicts of interest by council members; or
- appointment of voters when there is no person to vote in respect of a strata lot.
New strata housing website
The Province of British Columbia has launched a new strata housing website. It provides strata owners, residents, and strata council members with information about the Strata Property Act, regulations and standard bylaws, including: