WHAT’S NEW AT THE RENTAL BOARD?
As of August 31, 2020, the Quebec Rental Board (Régie du Logement) will change its name to the Tribunal Administratif du Logement (the “TAL”) and the commissioners running it, will be known as Tribunal Members.
Here are other important changes to be aware of:
The TAL will now offer conciliation to the parties as soon as the Application to institute proceedings (hereinafter the “Application”) application is received. The parties are free to accept or refuse conciliation without any consequence as to the outcome of their file.
2. Notification of the Application
1) You may notify your Application by any appropriate method.
In fact, it will now be possible to send an Application by e-mail, provided that proof of receipt is available or by public notice, without having to request specific authorization from the TAL.
NOTE: During the transition of these changes, it is preferable to also continue using traditional methods of notification, either by bailiff or by registered mail, to minimize problems at the hearing.
(2) When notified, the Application should be accompanied by the supporting documents (exhibits) or at least a list indicating their availability to the recipient upon request. This is to avoid taking the other party by surprise when handing over the exhibits at the day of the trial.
Finally, both the proof of service and the exhibits should be filed in the court file of the TAL before trial. Do not worry, you will not be prevented from adding documents later on to update your Application.
BEWARE: If no list of exhibits is filed, the TAL may refuse to set a hearing date and if the proof of service is not filed within 30 days of the filing of the Application, it may be closed.
Setting the rent
With respect to setting the rent, the Landlord must notify the tenant of the necessary form which is also filed with the TAL within 90 days of the Application, failure to do so, the file will expire and be closed by the TAL.
The new modifications also allow the TAL to provide management conferences with the parties (to bring the parties closer to a potential resolution) and to require them to collaborate on and file certain documents, in order to help accelerate the process and make it smoother.
If one of the parties does not comply with the TAL requirements, the TAL can make any appropriate decision they deem necessary.
Under section 56.10, any Application filed with the TAL is now deemed to be made under oath.
Hearings on file
If the parties consent, the TAL may allow a hearing to be held by way of sworn declarations, thereby avoiding the need for an in-person hearing or testimonies.
Change of Address
A person could and can request for the revocation of a judgment after finding out that a judgment has been rendered against them by default, meaning in their absence. However, as of August 31, 2020, it will no longer be possible for a person to make such a request if he or she has failed to inform the TAL of his or her address change and if the notice was validly sent to his or her previous address.
Abuse of rights
As of August 31, 2020, the Tribunal members will be able to not only judge an abuse of right (whether dilatory, in bad faith or trivial), but also to sanction it with damages.
Thus, when it deems that there is abuse of right, the TAL will have the power to order the abusive party to pay punitive and material damages to compensate for the other party’s losses (including legal fees).
Struck out Cases
If the parties are all absent from a hearing, the case will be struck out and the file will be closed if it is not re-registered within 30 days.
Assistance at the hearing
If, due to a person’s age and/or health, a person requires assistance, he or she may be assisted at the hearing by a trusted third party.
It was previously possible to produce the City’s inspection report as evidence at a trial, but not that of a Doctor or police officer as these reports required their presence.
As of August 31, 2020, a Member of the Tribunal may allow a police, doctor, firefighter and/or inspector, appointed under a recognized Act or regulation, to be submitted and used as that professional’s testimony.
|Me Zoë Alexandra Fortin||Me Emmanuelle Epstein|
1. Sections 31ss. Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
2. Sections 56 à 56.2 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
3. Section 56.3 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
4. Sections 56.4 à 56.9 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
5. Section 60 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
6. Sections 60.1 and 89 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
7. Section 63.2 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
8. Section 67 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
9. Section 74.1 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.
10. Section 78 Act Respecting Administrative Justice.