- Mandate : Mandatary
Definition : Mandate - Mandatary
Person who receives the mandate, from a mandator to represent him in the performance of a legal act or other with a third party. In divided co-ownership, we find this mandator-mandatary relationship both legally and contractually. The law stipulates that a director is deemed to be the mandatary of the syndicate of co-owners. In addition, a co-owner may grant to a mandatary the power to represent him at a general meeting of co-owners. This power and, if need be, the writing that records it, is called a proxy.
WARNING! The mandator-mandatary relationship should not be confused with the relationship between two contracting parties who are bound by a contract for services. Thus, when it is governed by such a contract, a condo manager is not, in principle, the mandatary of a syndicate of co-owners. Note, however, that the contract for services of a manager may include a representation component. The latter may therefore act as a mandatary of the syndicate for the purpose of entering into certain transactions.
En préparation d'une assemblée extraordinaire, certains copropriétaires ont signé une procuration afin de se faire représenter par un autre copropriétaire. À la suite d’une urgence, le mandataire désigné ne pourra pas participer. Celui-ci a signé une procuration à un membre du conseil d’administration. Question : Est-ce donc dire que les procurations qu'il détient seront toutes transférées au mandataire que lui a choisi?
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April 17, 2021 Any co-owner may delegate his right to vote to an mandatary. Thus, with the notice calling the meeting containing agenda, financial statements and budget, there is usually a blank proxy form. However, since there is no requirement for the board to include one, it may be necessary for a co-owner to prepare one himself.
A formidable tool at assemblies and an object of covetousness for many when a decisive vote is planned in the co-ownership. However, proxies and their validity are often the subject of unfortunate questions and attempts to counter them. What about it?
The director plays a leading role in a co-ownership. As a mandatary of the syndicate of co-owners, he ensures the smooth running of the immovable’s day to day business, which implies a working knowledge of the tasks related to this key function. As such, directors must act with prudence, diligence, honesty and loyalty. The members of the board of directors thus evolve in a legal environment where their personal liability can be sought as part of their mandate on behalf of the co-ownership as well as towards third parties. The civil liability of the directors with regard to the tasks incumbent upon them is largely ignored. Thousands of Quebeckers who sit annually on a board of directors, maybe including yourself, are unaware of this state of affairs.
The syndicates of co-ownership must set up a self-Insurance Fund to anticipate and finance, in particular, the expenses relating to the carrying out of future work following a loss. This fund is mandatory since April 15, 2022 following the adoption of the Bill 141, in 2018, which notably created section 1071.1 of the Civil Code of Québec. It had become necessary due to a substantial increase in insurance deductibles. Most of the time, the amount of these deductibles was formerly negligible, whereas today, it can reach tens, even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The desire to preserve the safety of people and property can lead both syndicates and co-owners to consider installing surveillance cameras in the building. For many, when a co-ownership faces repeated acts of vandalism or burglary, video surveillance appears to be the only solution, especially since the decrease in the cost of installations and technical progress facilitate its access. However, the question of the legality of such facilities raises several debates in co-ownership. It should be noted that surveillance cameras are used in many buildings, although they do not please everyone, including the occupants of the building who claim the right to privacy.
However, are surveillance cameras in a co-ownership legal? And if so, is there a procedure to follow?
The Board of Directors (the Board) is made up of members called directors. Their appointment is subject to certain formalities. In this regard, article 1084 of the Civil Code of Québec provides that the composition of the Board of the syndicate, the method of appointment, replacement or remuneration of the directors, as well as the other terms and conditions of their office, are fixed by the by-laws of an immovable. Each director acts as a mandatary of the syndicate of co-owners. This person must comply with the obligations imposed on him by law and the constituting act of co-ownership and act within the limits of the powers conferred on him. A director sits on the syndicate's board of directors.
The condo manager’s tasks are numerous. Therefore, his civil liability could be engaged. As a mandatary of the Syndicate of co-owners, the condo manager is required to fulfill the terms of his mandate. He is thus liable for damages that may result from the non-performance or improper execution of his mandate. This means that he incurs liability in two ways, in contractual civil liability towards the one who mandated him, namely the Syndicate of co-owners and in extracontractual civil liability towards a co-owner or a third party who would suffer damage as a result of a fault. It is therefore imperative that he takes out civil liability insurance for the duration of his service contract.
During a meeting of co-owners, important decisions are made for each member of the co-ownership. Whether for alteration or improvement of the common portions, the election of the members of the board of directors, it is up to the co-owners to decide. However, if a co-owner is absent and has not taken care to be represented at the meeting, his vote may be sorely lacking. This may also prevent the obtaining of a quorum and consequently the holding of the meeting of co-owners. When a co-owner cannot go there, he can ask the person of his choice to represent him. The mandatary the one who receives the proxy is not necessarily another co-owner. It may be a person outside the co-ownership. The latter will thus be able to represent him in this meeting and vote in his place on all the questions on the agenda.
A written instrument is compulsory
Tacit mandate being excluded, you must give a written instrument to the mandatary of your choice if you wish to be represented at the Meeting. The latter, who will represent you and vote on your behalf during the general meeting, can be one of the directors of the co-ownership (in his personal capacity), another co-owner, a friend or a person totally foreign to the co-ownership.