Ontario Landlords with “Bad Faith” Applications Beware

If a landlord gave a notice of termination in bad faith for landlord’s own use, purchaser’s own use, or for demolition, conversion, or major repairs, the board will now be able to order compensation for general damages to the former tenant in an amount not exceeding 12 months of rent at the last rate the former tenant paid the landlord.

To all Landlords:

These amendments to the Residential Tenancies Act under Bill 184 will go into effect on a date yet to be announced.

Landlords awaiting hearings who know they gave a notice of termination in “bad faith” for landlord’s own use, purchaser’s own use, or for demolition, conversion, or major repairs and renovations should beware. You should be scared of sections of the Residential Tenancies Act not yet in effect if, you have a case before the board.

The amounts of money a former tenant given a notice of termination in bad faith, can be awarded has risen dramatically. See section 57, 57.1, 71.1, 72, and 231.1 of the Residential Tenancies Act below for more information.

Landlords with “bad faith” applications currently before the board should consider withdrawing the applications.

Please note that although every effort was made to make sure these explanations are complete and accurate, it is very difficult to take sections of the RTA that are written in complex legal language and explain them fully in layman’s language.

Please check the precise wording of the amendments made in the Residential Tenancies Act. It is recommended that you obtain proper legal advice on interpreting the RTA, and how it applies to you.

Section 57(3) (8)

If a landlord gave a notice of termination in bad faith for landlord’s own use, purchaser’s own use, or for demolition, conversion, or major repairs, the board will now be able to order compensation for general damages to the former tenant in an amount not exceeding 12 months of rent at the last rate the former tenant paid the landlord.  

This section applies even if the tenant suffered no actual out of pocket damages. This section applies even if the Tenant’s application was filed before this section comes into force, provided the application was not decided prior to this section came into effect.

Section 57.1(2)(2.1)(2.2)

A Tenant given a Notice of Termination (N13) as the landlord intents to make major repairs or renovations to the apartment, has the right of first refusal to move back into the apartment when the major repairs or renovations are completed. If the landlord refuses to allow the tenant to move back in currently the tenant can apply to the board up to one year after they vacated.

This amendment will allow a tenant apply to the board up to two years after vacating. If a tenant has already applied to the board between one and two years after vacating, the application will be allowed to proceed.

If an application has already been dismissed as it was filed more than one year after the tenant vacated, the tenant will be allowed to re-apply if it is less than two years after they vacated.

Section 71.1(1)(2)

A landlord who applies for an eviction for landlord’s own use or purchaser’s own use will have to file an affidavit of the person who plans to move in with the board at the time the application is filed. The board will have the right to refuse the application if the affidavit is not filed at that time.

Section 71.1(3)(4)

A landlord who applies for an eviction for landlord’s own use, purchaser’s own use, or for demolition, conversion or repairs will have to indicate whether or not the landlord has given within the last two years, any notices to any tenant, at any property, for landlord’s own use, purchaser’s own use, or for demolition, conversion or repairs.

If a notice had been given to any tenant within the last two years, the landlord will also have to indicate: the date of the notice given, the address of the apartment related to the notice was given, identify who was supposed to move in.

If the landlord fails to comply with this section the board shall refuse the filing of the application.

Section 72(3)(4)

In determining the good faith intention for a landlord’s own use, or purchaser’s own use applications, the board may consider whether notices have been given to any tenant within the last two years under section 71.1(3)(4).

Section 87(1)(1.1)(3)(3.1)(4)(5)(6)(7)

A landlord will be allowed to apply to the board for a money judgment for non-payment of rent up to one year after the tenant vacates. This section will have to be effective on the day the tenant vacated.

The landlord will also be allowed to apply for daily rent from a former tenant, if the tenant remained in the apartment after being given any notice of termination, or there was an agreement to terminate the tenancy.

The tenant will have to be living in the apartment on the day this section came into effect. A landlord may apply to the board under this section while the tenant is still living there, or up to one year after the tenant vacated.

A landlord will be able to seek NSF cheque fees from a former tenant.

A landlord will be permitted to apply for non-payment of rent, daily rent compensation and NSF chqeues from a former tenant, even if the amounts were owed before this section comes into effect.

This section will not affect any claims against a former tenant that are already before the Small Claims Court or the Superior Court of Justice.

Section 88.1(1)(2)(3)(4)(5)(6)

A landlord will be allowed to apply to the board for reasonable out of pocket expenses related to the tenant or former tenant’s interference with the landlord’s reasonable enjoyment of the property, or another lawful right or privilege of the landlord.

This application will have to be made while the tenant is still living in the apartment, or up to one year after the tenant vacates.

The section applies even if the reasonable interference with enjoyment, lawful rights of the landlord, or the expenses occurred before this section came into effect.

This section will not affect any claims against a former tenant that are already before the Small Claims Court or the Superior Court of Justice.

Section 88.2(1)(2)(3)(4)(5)(6)

A landlord will be allowed to apply to the board for utility costs that the tenant or former tenant was required to pay the landlord.

This application will have to be made while the tenant is still living in the apartment, or up to one year after the tenant vacates.

The section applies even if the utility costs occurred before this section came into effect.

A landlord will be allowed to apply for reasonable out of pocket expenses utility costs already paid, or future costs related to utility expenses.

This section will not affect any claims against a former tenant that are already before the Small Claims Court or the Superior Court of Justice.

Section 89.1(1)(2)(3)(4)

A landlord will be allowed to apply to the board to pay for reasonable costs that the landlord has incurred or will incur for the repair of or, where repairing is not reasonable, the replacement of damaged property that the tenant or former tenant was required to pay the landlord.

The damage must be to the apartment or the residential complex. The damage must be as result of the negligence or willful actions of the tenant or former tenant, or the negligence or willful actions of a person the tenant or former tenant allowed in the apartment.

This application will have to be made while the tenant is still living there, or up to one year after the tenant vacates.

The section applies even if the damage to the apartment or residential complex occurred before this section comes into effect.

A landlord will be allowed to apply for reasonable out of pocket expenses utility costs already paid, or future costs related to utility expenses.

This section will not affect any claims against a former tenant that are already before the Small Claims Court or the Superior Court of Justice.

Section 189.0.1

A landlord filing an application against a former tenant for unpaid rent, compensation for daily use, unpaid utilities, or damages to the rental unit or residential complex will have to locate a current address for service for the former tenant.

A landlord suing a former tenant must serve the former tenant with the application and notice of hearing, and file a certificate of service with the board.   

Section 191(1.0.1)

An application and notice of hearing served on a former tenant must be served either personally, by mail to the current address of the former tenant, handing the documents to an adult where the tenant currently lives, or by another method permitted by the rules.

Section 231.1(1)

The Rental Housing Enforcement Unit of the Ministry of Housing prosecutes offenses made under the Residential Tenancies Act. This section permits a provincial judge or justice of the peace, to issue orders for production of documents to assist in an investigation by the Rental Housing Enforcement Unit.