The COVID-19 health crisis and its procession of government restrictions to limit gatherings have often made it impossible to regroup. The legislator was forced to organize the rescue of legal persons, banned from assemblies, to preserve, at least for a time, their functioning. The syndicates of co-owners have thus adopted alternatives to face-to-face meetings of co-owners. Social distancing obliges, COVID-19 has given rise to a phenomenon in co-ownership: virtual meetings of co-owners, also called remote meetings. In order to perpetuate this way of doing things, the law now authorizes syndicates of co-owners to hold meetings by technological means.
The process leading to convening a general meeting of co-owners must be rigorously observed. It is necessary to comply with certain formal conditions and time constraints, otherwise the decisions taken during such general meeting could be invalidated. The co-owners are informed of the holding of the general meeting of co-owners by the reception of the notice of meeting. This written notice must indicate the date, time and venue of the meeting and the questions on the agenda. Depending on the nature of these questions, certain documents must be attached to said notice. Look at different aspects of calling the general meeting.
A General Meeting of the co-owners cannot take place without an agenda. To deliberate in accordance with the Law, co-owners should be able to become aware, before the General Meeting, of the questions on the agenda. This the reason why it should be annexed to the notice of call, usually prepared by the Board of Directors (Board). It contains all the questions to be tabled for deliberation during the General Meeting. This document must be clear and unambiguous to avoid legal challenges. An overview of the various specificities of the agenda.
The right to vote is a founding principle of democracy. Citizens of a democracy can express their will in a ballot. In principle, this right is equal amongst all voters. Practically speaking, it is equivalent to the «one person, one vote" rule, which means that every vote has the same weight. However, co-ownership derogates from this principle, namely in that the number of votes held by the co- owners is in direct correlation with their rights of ownership in the immovable. An overview of the various aspects of voting in General Meetings of co-owners.
The declaration of co-ownership generally contains the terms and conditions concerning the conduct of the meeting of co-owners by defining rules of procedure and the role of the meeting officers. Key figures of the assembly of co-owners, they ensure the smooth running of it. Their appointment is therefore necessary for the holding of any meeting of co-owners. These are generally elected at the start of the meeting, in a separate vote taken by an absolute majority of the votes of the co-owners present or represented (50% of the votes plus one). This is an obligation that cannot be waived, because any decisions taken before their election has no legal value.
The board of directors is one of the two decision-making bodies of the syndicate of co-owners. It is a mandatory decision-making body for any syndicate of co-owners. Composed of one or more directors, it is the cornerstone of any well-managed co-ownership. In principle, it is the board of directors as a group that makes the decisions and not the directors individually. Its mission is to administer and ensure the preservation of the immovable. Its operation and decision-making process are governed by the declaration of co-ownership. An overview of the various specific facets of the Board of directors.
The directors are natural persons who make up the Board of Directors of the syndicate of co-owners, of which they are also the mandataries. They are appointed or elected to contribute to the accomplishment of the mission of the syndicate and the good management of its property. They must make use of their know-how, skills and experience to accomplish this mission, making sure they respect the Law and the declaration of co-ownership. Their contribution must be performed with honesty, loyalty, care, diligence, efficiency, assiduity and fairness.
The presence of a board of directors is mandatory in a co-ownership. It is the executive body of the syndicate and its legal representative. As for its members, they act as mandataries of the syndicate. Because of the phenomenon of co-ownership in difficulty or dysfunctional, the legislator, through Bill 16, has put in place judicial mechanisms to overcome these difficulties. Article 1086.4 was thus introduced into the Civil Code of Quebec. This addition allows the court to replace the board of directors with a provisional administrator, if circumstances warrant, and to determine the terms and conditions of its administration (e.g., term of office).
The presence of a Board of Directors is mandatory in a co-ownership. It is the executive body of the syndicate and its legal representative. Its members act as the mandataries of the syndicate.
When a co-ownership is newly constituted, the declaration of co-ownership generally provides for the appointment of a interim director, who exercises the functions of the Board of Directors until the Meeting of co-owners appoints a new board of directors. Consequently, the obligations related to administration, listed below, apply to this director.
Usually, it is the developer who designates him, in accordance with a provision in the declaration of co-ownership (By-laws of the Immovable). Often he appoints one of his representatives to act as the interim director of the syndicate.
Expenses related to the maintenance and administration of the common portions of a co-ownerships start from its constitution as a legal person. It is therefore necessary that each co-ownership sets up, upon publication of the declaration of co-ownership, a Board of Directors to administer it. To ensure the star up of the syndicate, the developer usually designates in the declaration of co-ownership (by-laws of the immovable), one of its representatives to act as the interim director of the syndicate.